Richard Beaubien is greeted by student leaders at Bakhshi's Springdales School in Kota, India.
This summer, Georgia Perimeter College's Richard Beaubien travelled 28 hours to Kota, India, to introduce educational opportunities at GPC to Indian high school students.
However, the students won't have to travel at all to attend GPC-they'll earn their associate degrees by taking distance education courses via the college's Online division.
"The benefits of such an arrangement are patently clear when a student can stay at home in India and save a significant amount off the cost of tuition and fees-not to mention living expenses-of the first two years of a postsecondary education in the United States," says Beaubien, GPC's director of Recruitment and Admissions.
did its homework before identifying Kota from among several larger cities, such as New Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai, as a place to introduce the benefits of GPC Online in a controlled and measured manner.
Kota has earned an exemplary reputation because of the city's high percentage of students in preparatory programs aiming for university entrance.
"Bakhshi's Springdales School
met every possible measure of a potential partner school with many students who have plans to complete a degree in the United States," says Beaubien
"It should be noted that many schools from many countries have approached the Indian market without an understanding of how things work in India, and an unfortunately high number of those institutions have failed in their endeavors and have left a bad taste in many mouths," he
"Understanding this, GPC
intends to work with one prestigious school, start small, and get it right.
India, even more so than the United States, has a word-of-mouth consumer culture in which initial success magnifies further success."
According to Beaubien
, the faculty and staff of Bakhshi's Springdales School
immediately saw the benefits of the proposal and invited Beaubien
to their campus to present the proposal directly to the students and parents.
says there are still some technical issues to be handled, but initial indications are very positive.
"Not fifteen minutes following the presentation at the Palace, we began receiving calls from students at other schools asking how they could also become involved," he