CoSS participate in Global Leaders’ Experience

Issued: Fri, 05 Oct 2018 13:41:00 BST

This September, 23 students from across all subjects in the College of Social Sciences, participated in a Global Leaders’ Experience (GLE) hosted by RMIT University in Barcelona. The aim of the programme, run by the organisation Common Purpose, was to help students develop their cultural awareness and leadership skills. Participants, also from the Universities of Exeter and RMIT Barcelona and making up a total of 21 nationalities, worked in teams of ten to develop new ideas to make sure that smart cities are inclusive and provide opportunities for all their inhabitants. On the final day, teams pitched their ideas and solutions to a panel of experts and city leaders who are specialists within their fields, and were given feedback on their idea as well as their cohesion as a group. The GLE gave participants an immersive international experience, meeting and interacting with employers and employees from local business from across the public, private and not-for-profit sectors.


As part of the overall international experience a day was set aside to experience Catalan culture, and students went on a guided tour of the magnificent Sagrada Familia, which is now 136 years into its construction! It is due to be finished in time for the 100th anniversary of its architect Gaudi’s death in 2026. They continued the Gaudi theme by visiting the beautifully designed Park Guell, which also has spectacular views across the city. Students were able to fit in many other cultural activities during the trip such as exploring the Gothic Quarters, Bunker del Carmel and taking the cable car to Montjuic amongst many others.

Overall, successful participation on the programme has given students a short-term international experience which will be added to their HEAR (Higher Education Achievement Report) and they have gained points towards their Social Sciences Glasgow Global award.

What the students said…

GLE 2‘It is an incredible addition to a student's CV and global experience’

‘I would definitely recommend the programme to other students. Thanks to it, I had a chance to meet like-minded people, work together in diverse groups, gain and improve some skills (teamwork, active listening, leadership, communication,..), and, of course, explore one of the most beautiful cities in Europe’.

‘Initiatives like this are so great for students who would not be able to afford a programme like the Common Purpose one’.

‘I did learn to be more confident in situations, such as on the first day when we were made to debate key and controversial societal issues with relative strangers. I did enjoy the interaction with the Exeter students and being able to visit different local businesses’.

‘I found the programme very enjoyable. The multiple speakers were inspirational and engaging and the experience as a whole made me into a more confident, determined person. I gained most from the opportunity to go to different companies and ask the individuals questions regarding the topic at hand’.