The Office of International Services (OIS) is preparing to welcome around one thousand new international students in the Fall 2012. The majority of these students will be pursuing graduate level degrees. Planning orientation for this many students who are not only new to the campus, but new to the country, is a big task. OIS relies heavily on volunteers during this time of year. Some of the most important participants in the process are the Small Group Leaders (SGLs). Small Group Leaders are American and international students and community members who volunteer their time and energy to help welcome and orient new international students. “Orientation wouldn’t be possible without Small Group Leaders,” said Lauren Ball, Programs Coordinator of OIS.
Each new international student is assigned to a “small group.” This is a way to make orientation more personal and meaningful. It also helps the students meet new people right away. Each small group is lead by two SGLs, one American and one International . The leaders communicate with their group members located around the world throughout the summer months to answer questions and offer advice. On orientation day the group gets to meet in person. “I participated as an American Small Group Leader, while doing graduate studies at NC State. It was one of my favorite experiences as a student here and the friendships I made will last a lifetime.” – Student volunteer.
As OIS begins recruiting orientation leaders for Fall 2012, they welcome everyone to apply and say thank you to all of those who have helped in the past. For more information about becoming a SGL contact Lauren_Ball@ ncsu.edu.