How to Attract Talent – University of Copenhagen

04 March 2016

How to Attract Talent

The Center for Healthy Aging at UCPH is on a mission to recruit the smartest brains from all over the world to become researchers at the center. How do they do that? One way is by offering two state-of-the-art summer courses to international students.

The Center for Healthy Aging (CEHA), an interdisciplinary research center at UCPH, aims to be leading within aging research. Being able to resolve the global challenge of an aging population requires world class research and bringing together the smartest brains under one roof. Recruiting talented people requires smart thinking. Therefore the center has been offering a summer course for international students for the past six years and is now expanding with one more.

CEHA’s director, Lene Juel Rasmussen, believes that summer courses have major potential as a recruitment tool: “The courses are important for inspiring students to engage with a given field of research - in this case, healthy aging. The courses are also a potential platform for recruiting talented people since the brief, intensive nature of the courses gives the students a highly realistic picture of what it is like to study or work at UCPH".

Blending learning formats

CEHA offers two summer courses. One, Interdisciplinary Aspects of Healthy Aging, started in 2010 and is provided under the IARU Global Summer Program. The other, Alive and KICking – Innovative solutions to aging-related challenges, will be offered for the first time in 2016 and has just been named as an EIT Health summer course. While the on-campus project work is at centre stage in the new course, an online component has also been added, combining two distinct ways of teaching and learning.

The online part of the summer course consists of a new MOOC, which will be launched on the Coursera platform 1st June 2016. Investing in online courses is also a way to create global awareness of the work of CEHA – and by extension attract international talents to UCPH, says Lene Juel Rasmussen.

An interdisciplinary approach

Blending learning formats is a natural extension of CEHA’s unique interdisciplinary approach to aging research. For the students who attend a summer course, it means they get the chance to interact with people from a broad range of academic disciplines.

Hannah Bathula, a student who attended the summer course in 2013, says: “This course provided me with an opportunity to study and research in an international multidisciplinary team. Since the participating students were from diverse fields […] we were able to learn from each other’s experiences.”

Grants for international talents

Attending a summer course abroad can be expensive. UCPH has teamed up with pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk to set up the Novo Nordisk International Talent Program, a scholarship programme supporting student mobility between UCPH and partner universities in the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), as well as Harvard University.

For further information please visit CEHA’s website or contact academic officer Line Damberg.