International Educator - January/February 2018 - 25

CHECKLIST

What Not to Forget
Both Lei and Hassan use high-touch
approaches to engaging and recruiting
international students, including ones
with possible lessons for institutions:
Be available to answer questions. Hassan stresses the importance of having
people-staff or agents-who know
international students' culture and can respond promptly in their native language.
"It's all about answering their questions
quickly and understanding exactly what
they want," he says.
Focus on culture. Students have as many
questions about living in the United
States-how things work, where to find
familiar food, and how to navigate everything from transportation to housing-as
they do about their studies. Be prepared
to help address these cultural concerns.
Social media. Engaging students where
they are-in WhatsApp discussion groups
or other social media channels-is vital.
Patience. Engaging international students
is important. Some may ultimately lose
interest, while others may lack the right
qualifications for admission. Yet taking
time to cultivate relationships is vital.
Hassan estimates that perhaps 10 percent

of the students he works with ultimately
are admitted, register, and come to the
United States. But in many parts of the
world, word of mouth drives additional
interest-and future students.
Climate concerns. Unease about the political climate in the United States is real, with
well-documented drops in international
student interest that institutions and their
agents must be prepared to address. Hassan responds to questions from students
in the Middle East by explaining the U.S.
system of checks and balances and the
rule of law, and how U.S. institutions have
made public stands against the current
administration's travel ban. Ultimately,
Hassan believes this will be a temporary
issue. "Time cures everything," he says.
Consider the image of intermediaries.
Agents can help colleges make connections, but they must do due diligence
about who is representing them, Lei says.
"Does the agent or organization represent the best branding and image of the
college or university in front of prospective students?" she asks.
Focus on career placement. Given changes in student visa policies, it's increasingly

Supporting International Entrepreneurs
Both Bao and Hassan got their businesses off the ground with
the help of the University of Bridgeport's Student Entrepreneur
Center, which opened in 2015 out of the university's on-campus
incubator program. And they aren't alone.
Around half of the cohort participating in the University
of Bridgeport's Student Entrepreneur Center are international
students, according to Cahill. Regardless of whether students are
domestic or international, "about 10 percent are going to have an
entrepreneurial personality, and having a place on campus for them
to come and explore the opportunities is essential," she says.
All students working with UB's Student Entrepreneur Center
are assigned personal mentors to support them as they ideate
and develop business plans. Networking opportunities, business
plan competitions, and launch weekends help students refine
their pitches and plans. Students also have access to mentors
with specific skillsets, such as technology, as well as attorneys and
CPAs who provide free help with issues like intellectual property,
incorporation, and tax issues. But international students also
need additional support, Cahill says.
"They need help with immigration, understanding student

difficult for international students to stay
in the United States without jobs. Colleges
and universities should redouble efforts
to work with local companies to provide
jobs or internship opportunities for these
students, according to Lei. "Some colleges
have great placement rates for local students, but they provide limited resources
for international students," she says.
Help students return home. Not all international students can-or want to-take
jobs in the United States after graduating.
Colleges can make connections with foreign companies to help students returning
to their native countries find employment,
says Lei, who also helps Chinese students
returning to their native country adjust
personally. "It's possible to feel isolated
and experience reverse culture shock
when students return home," she says.
Track alumni-and enlist them in recruitment efforts. Colleges also should
track and build alumni communities for
international students who return to their
native countries, who in turn could help
with recruiting. "They could invite their
alumni to speak and promote the school,"
Lei says.

visas, and when you can and can't start a business so it's not in
violation of a student visa," she says.
UB's Student Entrepreneur Center provides free access to
immigration attorneys who help international students ensure
that their ventures don't jeopardize their student visa status. The
center also developed a four-page dos and don'ts worksheet that
helps students understand what they are legally allowed to do.
"Our hope is that students can sustain an entrepreneurial
spirit," Cahill says. "We want to foster an environment where you
can explore your entrepreneurial feelings while in school."
Hassan agrees. "I'm over 40, but I was a student and could still
be inspired," he says. n
MARK TONER is a Washington, D.C., education writer.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
University of Bridgeport Student Entrepreneur Center: http://bit.
ly/2yYOQFs
Chinese-American Higher Education Institute http://cahei.org/
Education & Cultural Travel: http://bit.ly/2igDMch

J A N.+ F E B .18 INTERNATIONAL EDUCATOR

25  


http://bit.ly/2yYOQFs http://bit.ly/2yYOQFs http://www.cahei.org/ http://www.bit.ly/2igDMch

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of International Educator - January/February 2018

From the Desk of
Frontlines
In Brief
Global Spotlight: Malaysia
Quick Questions
Feature: Recruiting Farther Upstream: U.S. Institutions Are Exploring New Opportunities Among International High School Students
Feature: CASE STUDY: The Business of Global Engagement
Feature: Middle Class Rising: As the Number of Families with Discretionary Income Grows, So Do Prospects for More International Students
Education Abroad
International Student Affairs
International Enrollment
International Education Leadership
Forum
In Focus
Feature: Minimizing Risk, Maximizing Results
Advertiser Listings & Index
International Educator - January/February 2018 - BB1
International Educator - January/February 2018 - BB2
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Cover1
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Cover2
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 1
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 2
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 3
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 4
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 5
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 6
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 7
International Educator - January/February 2018 - From the Desk of
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Frontlines
International Educator - January/February 2018 - In Brief
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 11
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 12
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 13
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Global Spotlight: Malaysia
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 15
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Quick Questions
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 17
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Feature: Recruiting Farther Upstream: U.S. Institutions Are Exploring New Opportunities Among International High School Students
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 19
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 20
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 21
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Feature: CASE STUDY: The Business of Global Engagement
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 23
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 24
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 25
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Feature: Middle Class Rising: As the Number of Families with Discretionary Income Grows, So Do Prospects for More International Students
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 27
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 28
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 29
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Education Abroad
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 31
International Educator - January/February 2018 - International Student Affairs
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 33
International Educator - January/February 2018 - International Enrollment
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 35
International Educator - January/February 2018 - International Education Leadership
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 37
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Forum
International Educator - January/February 2018 - 39
International Educator - January/February 2018 - In Focus
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Cover3
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Cover4
International Educator - January/February 2018 - SCover1
International Educator - January/February 2018 - SCover2
International Educator - January/February 2018 - S3
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Feature: Minimizing Risk, Maximizing Results
International Educator - January/February 2018 - S5
International Educator - January/February 2018 - S6
International Educator - January/February 2018 - S7
International Educator - January/February 2018 - S8
International Educator - January/February 2018 - S9
International Educator - January/February 2018 - Advertiser Listings & Index
International Educator - January/February 2018 - SCover3
International Educator - January/February 2018 - SCover4
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