News & Event

USRN Staff Development Workshop 2023: Cultivating University Communities with a Broader Mind

The USRN Staff Development Workshop 2023 was hosted by VU Amsterdam from 24 to 26 September. Themed “Cultivating University Communities with a Broader Mind”, the biennial event of the University Social Responsibility Network (USRN) attracted 36 participants worldwide, including 10 USRN member institutions: Ateneo de Manila University, Rhodes University, Sichuan University, Simon Fraser University, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, The University of Manchester, Tufts University, University of Haifa, University of Iceland and VU Amsterdam; and four invited institutions: International European University, Sabancı University, University Paris-Est Créteil, and V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University.

During the Workshop, participants discussed and learned about the “Mixed Classroom Education” model, a diversity and inclusion best practice of VU Amsterdam that plays a pivotal role in cultivating an enriching and supportive learning atmosphere for all students, regardless of their backgrounds or abilities. Participants also got chances to exchange ideas, knowledge, and experiences about building successful University Social Responsibility (USR) initiatives that can be sustained over time.

After the plenary workshop session, four interactive parallel sessions were organised to showcase VU Amsterdam’s best USR practices in Transformative Change Towards Sustainability in Higher Education, Community Service Learning, Mentoring Young Students in Different Contexts, and Developing Socially Responsible Education in Co-Creation with Students.

The 6th USRN Executive Committee (ExCom) meeting was hosted after the Workshop, where members of the USRN ExCom gathered to discuss the future priorities and strategic foci of the Network.

The USRN thanks VU Amsterdam again for organising the very informative and inspiring Workshop.

  • Prof. Ben Young, Chair of the USRN Executive Committee and Vice President (Student and Global Affairs) of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University presented a souvenir to Dr Henk van den Heuvel, Acting Head, International Office of VU Amsterdam as a token of appreciation for VU Amsterdam's support and effort in hosting the USRN Staff Development Workshop.