The Office of International Education plays a key role for many student-athletes
FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The office of international education at Purdue University in Fort Wayne is essential in the efforts of the behemoths to recruit and develop relationships with international students. Their work contributes to a diverse and inclusive environment on campus.
Who are they and what are they doing? Let’s find out!
Brian Mylrea (Director of International Education), Maureen Linvill (Deputy Director of International Student Services) and Kerri Gouty (Deputy Director of International Admissions) serve as primary points of contact for international students and student-athletes once they are ‘they decide to apply to Purdue Fort Wayne.
Two international student-athletes, Laura Caetano and Luiza Caetano, from the Mastodon Women’s Golf Team, were involved through the International Education Office as guidance officials. Luiza also works in the office to help with the daily tasks of the department.
The office admits international undergraduate students and works in coordination with the graduate studies department for graduate students. Linvill mainly oversees student immigration and helps students obtain all the documents needed to apply for a student visa in their home country as well as the different types of authorizations required by the Department of Homeland Security for work permits. .
Gouty and Linvill run general question-and-answer sessions for incoming students and organize new directions for students.
The mountain of paperwork required has become even more difficult over the past two years as several US embassies have been closed due to the pandemic. While most embassies have reopened, many have a backlog of applications. Linvill works with students after they have secured their visa appointment to give them advice on how to ensure they get approval for their visa application.
Once international students arrive on campus, the office strives to answer all of their questions. Understanding the class structure at American universities is very important. However, the little things can also be difficult. Adaptation to food in America is one of the main differences according to Linvill. The office provides a list of supermarkets that cater to different ethnicities to help with this transition. Transportation is also a big challenge, so the office helps students learn about the process of getting a driver’s license. If a student wants to get a job on campus, they’re there to answer those questions as well.
The Office of International Education also runs programs throughout the school year to introduce American culture to international students. They recently hosted a Harvest Fest with pumpkin carvings and other games.
They also host events that showcase the home culture of international students to the Purdue Fort Wayne student body and the campus community. The Global Student Celebration in November features music, dancing and food to provide a glimpse into the campus community where Purdue Fort Wayne students come from.
Almost all Mastodon teams have an international student-athlete on their roster. The contributions of international student-athletes are woven into the fabric of the department. The campus sees these same contributions in the classroom, adding their perspectives and experiences on different topics to help create a diverse learning experience.
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