Will I still feel part of my University if I am an international student?
I will be attending Graduate School in either Ireland or the UK this fall, as an international student I am nervous about not feeling part of my University as much as I did when I attended an Undergraduate course in the US. Will my status as an international student make it harder to feel completely integrated in my University's student culture? #gradschool #international #abroad #integration #student #college #student-affairs #college-student
As a former international student in the States, I can tell you that I didn't feel I wasn't part of my school.
There are several things that may help you feel more connected with your University culture.
- International student office - great place to get started and learn your campus. They have all sorts of information to guide you through your days there for sure
- Join student clubs - you'll feel like you are part of a big family and that helps to increase your sense of belonging
- Participate in school events - take sports game for instance, when you are in the arena surrounded by schoolmates and you are all cheering for the same team, you will feel a strong school spirit that connects you and the others as well as your University
- Make friends - broaden your circle by hanging out with local students and international students. Local friends will help you get involved with local culture faster. Friends from abroad, like you, will know your hardship and you will support each other and be each others' home away from home
- Be open-minded - having a welcoming mindset to accept culture and environment that are foreign to you so you can truly enjoy and be involved in your University
You will be fine :) Good luck.
I am a higher education professional who has experience working with international students, and international students can have a great experience at their University campus. Please ensure you are visiting the International Student Services at your campus to receive support on immigration advising, employment and other professional development opportunities. I am certain you will love your college experience!