How You Can Help International Students Feel At Home

Posted by liveatcvi on March 22nd, 2019

Here are some ways to help you become a better ambassador for international students at your school.

1. Be friendly.  Just like you are with anyone else, be warm, welcoming and accommodating to international students.  For instance, if there's a foreign student in your classes, student housing around ucf or clubs, don’t let them feel alienated, but treat them just the same as everyone else. Invite him or her to join your study group, off-campus get together or party, or ucf student online HUB community. Don't presume that your invitation will be un-welcomed if they seem quiet or shy.

2. Be an ambassador.  An awesome way to make international students feel welcome on campus is to simply be a good ambassador of your school. Be nice, don't be mean or rude.  If there is an international student in your school looking for off-campus affordable student housing near ucf, lend them a hand to search for apartments near ucf.

3. Be respectful.  Being a good friend to an international student means to follow the social cues your new friend gives you and act accordingly. It's okay to be curious and ask questions, but make sure you aren't going overboard and putting someone on the spot or making it seem like you find them weird. If he or she seems uninterested in changing something you think is strange, accept that as part of who they are. This is a good skill to learn with friends of any culture or race.

4. Don't make cultural differences a big deal.  Foreign students might refer to family practices and traditions that seem shocking to you. They might dress in a way that you find strange or prefer to eat food you might find weird, but that's normal to them.  It's okay to be curious and ask questions, but make sure you aren't going overboard and putting someone on the spot or making it seem like you find them sinister. Don’t let cultural differences hinder you from treating them right.

5. Follow the golden rule.

As the saying goes, “Treat others the way you'd like to be treated.” For instance, if you decided to go to college, say in South Korea, how would you want people to treat you? A great guide to proper behavior and response is your own feelings about certain situations.

These tips will help you become an ambassador of your campus and help international students feel at home away from the comfort of their homeland.

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