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Students stranded in Czechia? An option for uninterrupted studies

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There are thousands of ambitious Czech students who dream of studying in the US, and might now think that the pandemic has ruined their plans. But all is not lost; although these students have seen their study abroad plans interrupted, they still have the opportunity to receive an authentic American education without leaving the Czech Republic. The close partnership between the University of New York in Prague and the State University of New York allows students to earn an American bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Communication & Media, International Relations, IT Management or Psychology directly from the State University of New York while living in Prague, without traveling to the US or paying US tuition and/or US living expenses. Students who find that their current university is not meeting their expectations can quickly transfer to one that would suit them better, without losing any time or credits. For students who prefer a more communicative and comprehensive approach to learning and are interested in studying in English, an international education might be the right solution.

“Transferring to UNYP from a different university is a very straightforward process, given the fact that we offer American degrees which are also accredited in the Czech Republic,” says Dr. Andreas Antonopoulos, Rector of the University of New York in Prague. “Students must have studied at an accredited university in the Czech Republic or any other country. If they have previously studied in the US or most OECD or EU countries, they will receive a direct assessment of credits here at UNYP in co-operation with our partners at the State University of New York, and transfer all the relevant courses that they have taken at their other university. If they have studied in a different country, that would mean an independent evaluation of their credits with a standardized approach to the assessment, available with several international accredited companies which do just that. Here at UNYP, we often get students transferring credit; close to a quarter of our student body have transferred from a public or private university in the Czech Republic or abroad. On the four-year American bachelor programs, we can transfer up to the equivalent of two and a half years—a little more than half of their studies. This is the maximum amount permitted. The most common situation is when students transfer after half, one or one and a half years, because they have realized that their first-choice university or program is not of the quality they were expecting or is not where they want to be, and not what they want to do with their lives. And then they choose UNYP as a more suitable educational experience.”

There is no reason to lose precious time when choosing to switch universities. Once students have made the decision to transfer, it is crucial for them to conduct thorough research. It could be useful to attend a virtual or traditional Open Day, and have a chance to discuss their particular transfer situation with the Admissions officers.

There are many reasons why a student might want to transfer. They may want to pursue a program that could broaden their career horizons in today’s highly competitive work market, or to study at a university with a better reputation than their current institution. Many students move to UNYP from public universities in the Czech Republic because their aspirations have risen and their career goals have become more apparent, or because they want an international degree or to receive higher education in the English language. Quite often, students realize how much more they could achieve by going the extra mile and choosing to study for their bachelor’s degree at an American university in Prague.

“The great benefit of an American education is its phenomenal flexibility and mobility, based on the credit system. All the state and private universities in the US have a credit transfer system. As long as the student comes from an accredited institution, they can transfer relevant credit. The definition of ‘relevant credit’ is rather broad in that the US education system has a substantial general education credit component, which means that it doesn’t matter what you study on a full-time bachelor’s degree—a good part of your study is dedicated to General Education. It doesn’t matter if students study Business, Communications or International Relations because the earlier years of the program will have most of the General Education courses, which means that students can transfer a lot of credit by moving from one program to the other. This also means if a student goes from studying, say, Psychology to International Relations, something that would not be directly relevant in a European education, a good part of the credits you have studied can be transferred from one program to the other, so you won’t have to start from scratch. This is an excellent benefit of American education, wherever it is offered around the world.

Because UNYP is an accredited institution, our students have a great deal of flexibility if they want to continue their education abroad, especially in the US, after a few years with us. Instead of going to the US directly, they could begin their program in the Czech Republic, and transfer to any American university when the time is right for them. Conversely, Czech students who started their studies in the US or any other country, but now are looking into returning to the Czech Republic due to the current situation with the COVID-19 pandemic, would be able to continue their studies at UNYP without losing their credits and could still be graduating with an American degree from the State University of New York” concludes Dr. Antonopoulos.

Dr. Andreas Antonopoulos, UNYP Rector

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