Image courtesy of Jirka Matousek via Flickr (CC 2.0)
As the new academic year begins at many U.S. colleges and universities this month, we hear from Dr. Patriece Campbell, Director of International Programs, Millersville University (PA), on the very timely topic of the value of participating in new international student orientation on U.S. college campuses.
Q: Describe your institution in 5 words?
A: Comprehensive, Safe, Affordable, Supportive, Suburban
Q: For what is your institution best known overseas?
A: Millersville University is recognized for offering a variety of programs with a great campus location and high return on investment
Q: What are your top academic programs (undergrad & grad)?
A: – Undergrad-Applied Engineering & Technology Management, Biology, Business, Meteorology, Education, Music Business Technology, Education
– Graduate – Education, Clinical Psychology, Innovation and Technology
Q: What are the top 5 countries represented at your college/How international is your institution?
A: China, Saudi Arabia, India, Vietnam, Malaysia
Q: How does your institution use IELTS in the admissions process? How valuable a tool is it in evaluating prospective students?
A: We currently accept the IELTS at both the graduate and undergraduate level. We look at the overall score. The requirement for undergraduate admissions is 6.0 and the requirement for graduate admissions is 6.5. If a student does not have sufficient scores/English proficiency then we can offer conditional admission through our English Language Institute.
The Importance of International Student Orientation
Q: After students have gotten their visas to come to the United States, what next steps should they take to get ready?
A: It is important for international students to become as familiar as possible with the institution. Since most often, international students may not have the opportunity to visit campus prior to arrival, They are encouraged to keep in touch with their admissions counselor or international office regarding pre-arrival information and updates. They will be available to assist you with information needed as it relates to what to bring etc. Ask about special programs that might be available, such as peer mentors, host families, faculty/staff mentor, and even free airport pickup.
Q: What steps do universities take to help international students feel welcome on campus?
A: Many students create a series of communication to help guide the students to programs and activities (and people) that will serve as resources and be a huge impact on their life on campus. Each semester will have a variety of programming through the International Office and Student Engagement department to encourage student involvement. PARTICIPATE!
Stay tuned for the next “The View from Campus” post, where Dr. Campbell speaks about the role of international student orientation, how important it is for new international student and shares advice for prospective students on student life in the USA.