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Estácio is one of Brazil’s largest private-sector Higher Education groups in terms of number of students enrolled. In March 31, 2018, we had 546.000 students in our distance learning and campus programs of our undergraduate and graduate courses, and a network of one university (Estácio de Sá University - ESU), ten university centers, 49 accredited colleges and 409 distance learning units recognized by the Ministry of Education (MEC) with nationwide coverage. All of them strategically located close to the homes and/or workplaces of our target public of middle- and lower middle-income workers.

The origin of Estácio de Sá University (ESU) comes from the creation of the Law undergraduate course in 1970. In 1971, it was transformed into the Estácio de Sá Integrated Faculties, being recognized as a University in 1988, through the ministerial order Nº 592 of November 29th, 1988, published in the Federal Official Diary (November 30th, 1988).

ESU has established as one of its goals the enabling of a creative and dynamic educational proposal, able to generate new ideas and to renew careers, and to anticipate the market trends, aiming at forming individuals who can contribute for the construction of a new reality. This objective, associated with the institutional commitment of excellence, leads to strategies chased by the University throughout time and based on the principles of quality and participation.

In this context, the University, concerned about the democratization of education and its low-cost offering with quality, developed a study from which the results demonstrated that the offer of goods and services was reduced at determined points generating economic, demographic and cultural concentrations, leading to regional imbalances.

The Law undergraduate and graduate courses were the cradle of several successful initiatives of internationalization throughout time – which evidences their experience in establishing and developing collaborations in international networks, especially concerning their professors. However, only after the creation of the Science without Borders program by the Brazilian government, in July 2011 (as a means to foster international academic formation with student mobility in undergraduate courses), Estácio understood the need for the creation of a department focused in this area. At a first moment, the Applied Research Department assumed the responsibility in organizing academic mobility, which increased exponentially in the following years. At the end of 2014, a new threshold was reached with the creation of the International Cooperation Office (ICO), which preliminarily systematized several positive actions and dedicated itself to future perspectives in this area.

The attributions of the ICO are:

  • To establish agreements with foreign institutions for bilateral mobility programs of graduate and undergraduate students;
  • To gather information about internationalization at all higher education institutions at Estácio (Brazil);
  • To manage mobility programs of graduate and undergraduate students;
  • To establish a routine monitoring opportunities in international education and research, and advertising this information to students, faculty members and administrative staff;
  • To stimulate the coming of visiting professors in scientific collaboration at Estácio, especially in graduate programs;
  • To advise foreign visiting professor and students;
  • To preserve a policy of internal utilization of international experiences obtained by Estácio’s students and professor;
  • To support graduate programs in the organization of courses and didactic materials in English, international seminars, colloquies and forums;
  • To fulfill the Estácio’s annual internationalization aims;
  • To establish a constant communication with Estácio’s campuses, in order to monitor professors and students in mobility or work missions abroad, according to the Internationalization Policy.