“You already know somebody”: The International Postgraduate Student Mentoring Project

Miss Georgia Killick1, Miss Ashleigh McIntyre1

1Newcastle University Postgraduate Students Association (nupsa), Newcastle, Australia

Last year, Newcastle University Postgraduate Students Association (NUPSA) launched its International Student Mentoring Initiative, which sees international students paired with a mentor prior to their arrival in Australia. Research shows that it takes 6 months for international students to gain momentum in their study when working abroad(Poyrazli, Senel & Grahame, Kamini, 2007). In addition to commencing the highest level of education, students must navigate a new culture, a new city, find a home, and source income — sometimes with the absence of familial supports. The project aims to support international students settling into Australia and life at an Australian University by pairing them with a student who has been through the experience before.   This session will report on the project’s pilot year, evaluate the outcomes based on student feedback, and focus on ways we can improve the process. This is a student-led project that demonstrates ways students can work with their respective institutions to collaboratively improve the student experience. The efficacy of the International Postgraduate Student Mentoring Initiative depends on the combined engagement of students and staff within the association and exemplifies the importance of effective strategies to transfer knowledge through student leadership cycles. ”

Poyrazli, Senel & Grahame, Kamini. (2007). Barriers to Adjustment: Needs of International Students Within a Semi-urban Campus Community


Biography:

Georgia is currently working as the Student Rep Support Officer for NUPSA and is passionate about student consultation shaping educational institutions, practice and policy. She loves to laugh, look at pictures of animals on the internet and always seems to wind up hanging out with the hosts pets at parties. She is one of those odd people who loves public speaking and feels most alive when in front of an audience. A+, Would recommend.

Ash McIntyre is serving her second term as President of Newcastle University Postgraduate Student’s Association (NUPSA). She is passionate about student voice and improving mental health in the postgraduate student space. Ash is PhD candidate,a casual academic and her research is based in the Environmental Humanities. When she is not writing, teaching, or planning extravagant excursions with NUPSA, Ash is likely to be with her three cats or singing loudly and terribly to her Spotify playlist.

 

ABOUT THE ASSOCIATION

ISANA International Education Association is the representative body for professionals in Australia and New Zealand who work in international student services, advocacy, teaching and policy development in international education. For more information, please visit the ISANA website.

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