Greetings from the National NAFSA (Association of International Educators) Conference in Houston, TX where, 8,500 International advisers, admissions representatives (that’s me!) and vendors have come together to talk about the International student process, discuss major immigration challenges, and participate in solution sharing activities. Whew what a mouthful! This entire week, I’ve been attending sessions, listening to inspiring plenary speeches, and catching up with my colleagues from around the world!
In case you didn’t know, UMBC has students from over 150 different countries, making us one of the most diverse campuses in the nation! Because of this, it’s incredibly important that our International student support staff has a network of … well … support! NAFSA allows us to meet other International educators with years and years of experience. Since I was a NAFSA Newbie, I felt it necessary to take 20 pages of notes and collect enough business cards to fill a room!
Ok, so maybe International Admissions doesn’t sound as exciting to you as it does to me, but we did get out and have some fun too! We tasted the local cuisine, danced to music from a local band (led by an accordion and washboard), and made a few lasting friendships.
All in all, this NAFSA-ian had a great time 🙂