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Several months ago SWPS University has embarked on a journey, a Journey to Changemaker Certificate (J2CC) granted by Ashoka. Today, we have reached the first stage of this process and are happy to announce that our Management and Leadership program has been awarded the J2CC certificate. SWPS University is the first university in Poland and continental Europe to have received this prestigious recognition.

We are extremely proud of this achievement. This interim goal has motivated us to continue our efforts to pursue the full Changemaker Campus certification for SWPS University.

Ashoka: Innovators of the Public

Ashoka is an international organization that promotes social entrepreneurship. Ahoka’s mission is "to shape a global, entrepreneurial, competitive citizen sector: one that allows social entrepreneurs to thrive and enables the world's citizens to think and act as changemakers”. To achieve this, Ashoka identifies and supports the world's leading social entrepreneurs, learns from the patterns in their innovations, and mobilizes a global community that embraces these new frameworks to build an ‘everyone a changemaker world’.

This applies not only to individuals, but to various organizations, including the education sector. To become a changemaker, a higher education institution has to create an education experience that helps its students to acquire and develop certain transversal competencies, such as:

  • Be ready to see your actions as a way to create common good for the society
  • Be able to effectively work in various inclusive networks
  • Become entrepreneurial in all aspects of your life
  • Be ready to constantly learn and develop your empathy through respectful and responsible interactions.

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The 6-step process of the Journey to Changemaker Certificate

From its inception, SWPS University has been promoting the rule of ‘education beyond the classroom’. In the contemporary world, teaching and conducting research projects is not sufficient. Universities must prepare students for the rapidly changing environment. This attitude is in our DNA. Through building a culture focused on change and by inviting students to be a part of this culture, we acknowledge the fact that young people need to become changemakers, in order to thrive in the constantly changing world. As educators, we believe that our duty is to guide young people towards social impact goals in the process of preparing them to become responsible members of the society. We support the idea of ownership, which shows our students that in order to thrive in the challenging environment, they need to take matters in their own hands and be capable of introducing positive changes in their communities and in the world.

Our Vision is to explore and change the world. Therefore, we sought a partner, who could help us to realize our vision. Ashoka encouraged us to embark on a 6-step journey to the certification process, which includes the following steps:

  1. In-depth interviews with senior management, academic staff and students to establish a baseline
  2. Intense and interactive training for academic staff to support them in designing or redesigning teaching program(s)
  3. Audit of documents and feedback on learning outcomes
  4. Preparation of a Self-Development Report (SDR) - a roadmap for the next steps and improvements
  5. Certification visit of academic experts from the worldwide network of Ashoka
  6. Granting of the J2CC certificate and signing of a formal agreement between Ashoka and the University.

The J2CC certificate is the culmination of the whole team’s effort of the past 12-months and signifies our ambitious plans for future development. Thanks to J2CC, we believe that we hold the future in our own hands and we can achieve anything, if we work together.

Marcin Jacoby, Ph.D., Director for International Relations

 

The longest journey begins with the first step

To begin our journey to the Changemaker Certificate, we have selected the Management and Leadership program to undergo the qualification process. The choice was obvious as the current global environment demands managers who are changemakers and it needs leaders who are engaged and responsible.

This is the story of our Journey to the Changemaker Certificate for the Management and Leadership program:

Steps 1 and 2
After the baseline interviews, the leading faculty members of the Management and Leadership program participated in a special training delivered at the University of Northampton, in the UK, which owns the prestigious Changemaker Campus affiliation granted by Ashoka. The training was delivered through the CAleRO process (Creating Aligned Interactive educational Resource Opportunities). It was designed to support teaching staff to design or redesign teaching programs to embed 'changemaking' into the learning outcomes and objectives. The CAleRO training was supplemented by a work-shadowing tour.

Step 3
An audit of documentation was conducted by Ashoka Poland. The goal was to assess whether the environment at SWPS University, at the strategic level, supports the changemaking culture and whether the learning outcomes (the program and courses) reflect the changemaking approach and skills.

Step 4
The fourth stage of the J2CC accreditation process required SWPS University to write a Self-Development Report (SDR). This project was a true team effort, supported personally by the Director of Ashoka Poland, Ms. Agata Stafiej-Bartosik.

In the report, we recognized the need to provide institutional support to various changemakers active in and around our community, and to move towards a more integrated approach to changemaking as an important part of what we believe our University has always been and should be. We have also understood that we should not embark on this path alone, but rather make ample use of the experience and expertise of friends, partners and organizations, which have managed to arrive at an integrated and conscious level of “strategic changemaking, thinking and doing”.

We also understood that in order to achieve this, our J2CC know-how needed to expand further from the level of one program to that of the whole University. This would require the implementation of structural changes, recognition of social engagement as one of the key areas of top management interests apart from teaching, research and institutional growth.

Step 5
The certification visit was the fifth stage of the J2CC accreditation process. The goal of the visit was to discuss the Self-Development Report with auditors from the international Ashoka network, including the co-founder and Head of Ashoka U, Ms. Marina Kim, from the United States, and to receive their feedback.

After careful analysis of the J2CC process and how it can help to improve the Management and Leadership program in the short term and the whole University community in the long term, Professor Roman Cieślak, Rector of SWPS University, acknowledged the plan of action and the goals set forth in the Self-Development Report. The Rector expressed his full support for the initiative and his trust in the transformative effect of J2CC for the whole institution, our students, and staff.

Step 6
Finally, after several months of hard work and commitment we are proud to have been granted the Journey to Changemaker Certificate, awarded to our Management and Leadership program and we are looking forward to the upcoming phases of the project. We hope to join the community built by Ashoka in the United States, the Americas and other continents, where the network is growing dynamically.

We also hope to become the first Changemaker Campus in Poland and in continental Europe, a university that encourages other similar institutions in the region to follow suit. We believe that as a Changemaker Campus, we could actively change higher education in Poland, by showing practical and tangible value of teaching changemaker skills and by proving that these teaching methods and strategies can be successfully integrated in the teaching process.

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Rankings & Recognition

Grants 26-08-2019

Our doctoral students awarded grants from NCN

Several doctoral students from SWPS University have been awarded research grants by the National Science Centre. Thanks to the NCN’s ETIUDA funding scheme for doctoral candidates, they will research various...

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Grants 23-08-2019

Dr. Konrad Bocian awarded grant from EASP

We are pleased to announce that one of our scientists, Dr. Konrad Bocian, from the Facutly of Psychology in Sopot, has been awarded a 'seedcorn' grant from the European Association...

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Awards & Recognition 24-07-2019

SWPS University recognized for commitment to changemaking

SWPS University as the only higher education institution in Poland has been recognized for its commitment to spark and accelerate changemaking. The recognition comes from Ashoka U as part of...

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Grants 17-07-2019

SWPS Researchers Receive Over 4M in Grants from NCN

Several psychologists, social scientists and culture experts from SWPS University have been awarded over PLN 4 million in research grants from the National Science Center (NCN). Professor Radosław Markowski, Associate...

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Awards & Recognition 04-04-2019

Our Management and Leadership Program Awarded Ashoka J2CC

Several months ago SWPS University has embarked on a journey, a Journey to Changemaker Certificate (J2CC) granted by Ashoka. Today, we have reached the first stage of this process and...

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Grants 27-02-2019

NCN Grants Close to PLN 4.5M to Our Researchers

Why do people tend to reach for sugary or salty snacks when they feel stressed? Why do strongly motivated individuals give in to everyday temptations and abandon the pursuit of...

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Awards & Recognition 21-01-2019

Faculties in Katowice and Poznań gain right to grant doctoral degrees

We are happy to announce that the past eight years of diligent work contributed by faculty members from SWPS University in Katowice and Poznań have been recognized by the Central...

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Awards & Recognition 13-12-2018

Elsevier Research Impact Leader Award for SWPS University

We are very happy to announce that SWPS University was recognized for its contribution to the visibility of Polish science around the world with the Elsevier Research Impact Leaders Award...

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Awards & Recognition 10-12-2018

SWPS University Awarded 2018 Silver Paper Clip for Educational Channel

Sharing knowledge and helping people is an inherent part of our strategy. Therefore, we are very happy to be recognized with a 2018 Silver Paper Clip Award for our work...

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Grants 27-11-2018

SWPS University Researchers Receive PLN 6.5M in Research Grants

Researchers from SWPS University have been awarded a total of PLN 6.5M in research grants from the National Research Center and the Polish National Agency for Academic Exchange. The awarded...

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Grants 24-05-2018

SWPS University Receives PLN 4.3M in Research Grants from NCN

Researchers from SWPS University have been awarded a total of PLN 4.3M in grants from the National Science Centre (NCN) for research projects that will focus on topics such as...

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Grants 19-02-2018

SWPS University Receives PLN 4.5M in Research Grants from NCN

Researchers from SWPS University have been awarded a total of PLN 4.5M in grants from the National Science Centre (NCN) for research projects that will focus on topics such as...

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Awards & Recognition 01-02-2018

Aigerim Balkhashbayeva Wins Interstudent 2018 Award

Aigerim Balkhashbayeva from Kazakhstan, who studies Psychology in English at SWPS University, has won the INTERSTUDENT 2018 award, in the Undergraduate Studies category. The award recognizes international students, who build...

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Awards & Recognition 04-12-2017

Golden Paper Clip Award for SWPS University’s YouTube Channel

Over 34,000 subscribers, close to 4 million views, hundreds of likes, positive comments, and shares of educational and scientific content provided by SWPS University - these numbers speak for themselves...

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Grants 20-11-2017

SWPS University Receives PLN 1.3M in Research Grants from NCN

Researchers from SWPS University have been awarded a total of PLN 1.3M in grants from the National Science Centre (NCN) for research projects that will focus on topics such as...

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Awards & Recognition 14-11-2017

Graduates of SOF Win Prestigious Prize in Dubai

MIKO+ jewelry, designed by Ewa Dulcet and Martyna Świerczyńska, graduates of School of Form in Poznań, has been awarded the Progress Prize at the Global Grad Show in Dubai. The...

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Grants 27-07-2017

Among Top Recipients of Grants from the National Science Centre

The National Science Centre (NCN) has published a report related to grants awarded to research institutions in Poland for the period 2011-2016. SWPS University ranked 5th among the top recipients...

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Awards & Recognition 05-06-2017

Our Students Win 2nd Place in Enactus Competition

Two community projects, developed and implemented by students of SWPS University, have been awarded 2nd place in the national edition of the Enactus Competion 2017, organized by an international non-profit...

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Awards & Recognition 01-06-2017

Prof. Wiesław Godzic on FIPRESCI Jury at Moscow Film Festival 2017

Professor Wiesław Godzic, media expert at SWPS University’s Institute of Cultural Studies, will join the Jury of the International Federation of Film Critics, FIPRESCI, at the Moscow International Film Festival...

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Awards & Recognition 27-02-2017

School of Form Awarded at 2017 London Fashion Week

The first ever fashion exhibit designed by students and graduates of the School of Form (SOF) for the International Fashion Showcase (IFS) at the 2017 London Fashion week has been recognized...

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Awards & Recognition 07-11-2016

Polish Nobel Prize for Professor Bogdan Wojciszke

For the 25th time, the Foundation for Polish Science (FNP) has granted the annual FNP Prizes, considered to be Poland’s most important scientific awards. This year’s winners include three leading...

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Awards & Recognition 13-10-2016

Teofrast Superstar Award for Professor Andrzej Eliasz

Professor Andrzej Eliasz, the co-founder and first Rector of SWPS University, has received the Teofrast Superstar award, established by Charaktery, a Polish popular science magazine devoted to psychology. “Twenty years ago...

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Awards & Recognition 30-09-2016

Piotr Voelkel - Visionary of Polish Business

Piotr Voelkel, the owner of Vox Capital Group, Founder of SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities, art connoisseur and promoter of Polish design has been awarded Wizjonerzy 2016 [Visionaries...

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Awards & Recognition 27-06-2016

SWPS YOUTUBE LEARNING CHANNEL REACHES 1M VIEWS

SWPS University Channel on YouTube has become the most popular and the highest ranked university channel on the video sharing platform, in Poland. It is an indication that SWPS University...

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Awards & Recognition 22-06-2016

Agnieszka Kruszewska joins editorial board of Journal of the Research Society of Pakistan

Agnieszka Kruszewska, Ph.D., an international relations expert, specializing in the issues of South-Asia, has joined the editorial board of the Journal of the Research Society of Pakistan. JOURNAL OF THE RESEARCH...

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Awards & Recognition 13-06-2016

Chinese Book Center Opens at SWPS University

On June 14, 2016, the first in the world Chinese Book Center was opened at SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Warsaw. The ceremony coincided with the official...

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Awards & Recognition 01-06-2016

HR Excellence in Research - Our Commitment to Researchers

As a research institution that meets the requirements of the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers, developed by the European Commission, SWPS...

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Awards & Recognition 16-04-2016

DOCTOR HONOROIS CAUSA FOR PROFESSOR JAN STRELAU

Professor Jan Strelau, the creator of the Regulative Theory of Temperament (RTT) and the leading psychologists in the area of Psychology of Individual Differences was awarded the title Doctor honoris...

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Awards & Recognition 25-01-2016

SWPS University Academics Awarded Elsevier Certificates

Two SWPS University academics from Wrocław, Agata Gąsiorowska and Katarzyna Byrka, have been awarded Elsevier Reviewer Certificates. Elsevier, a world-leading provider of information solutions for researchers in the field of...

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