INTO CSU helps international students become Rams

Rachel Musselmann

Just past the Oval in Spruce Hall, INTO CSU is putting a Colorado State University education within reach for international students.

The program offers support in advising, tutoring and immigration for international students interested in becoming CSU Rams, said Tamara Hunter, the program’s marketing communications manager.

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“Our program helps students who have never even traveled to the U.S., let alone lived and studied here,” Hunter said.

Hunter said INTO CSU boasts a staff of over 70 English tutors and teachers, as well as advisors and student ambassadors, designed to promote English immersion and a close-knit community.

“The coolest part is how similar the students are,” Hunter said. “There’s so much diversity, but in the end they’re all working so hard to succeed.”

The students in transition can choose a graduate or undergraduate Pathway program, Hunter said. The program will prepare them for speaking English and navigating the American academic system, and will place them in a residence hall with a native English-speaker.

Academic English Coordinator Beth Hasbrouck said the classes offered, including general English and academic English, are taught fully in English to students of all backgrounds to facilitate learning.

“It’s helpful for the students to be in class with others of different language backgrounds,” Hasbrouck said. “They learn a lot from each other.”

Hasbrouck said due to a recent rise in enrolled students without even a basic English background, INTO CSU plans on increasing resources for first-time learners in the fall.

Student Ambassador Natalia Bakova, an INTO CSU alumna and business administration sophomore, said she chose to return to INTO CSU to help other students adjust.

“INTO CSU was so important in my transition,” Bakova said. “They helped me make my first friends here, and paired me with an American roommate who was really helpful.”

Bakova said she was attracted to INTO CSU because of a presentation given in her hometown in Russia.

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“I paid attention because of the emphasis on English immersion and the mandatory American roommate,” Bakova said. “I thought it would really help me adjust, and it did.”

Hunter said the three-year-old program, which expects to see its first alumni graduate from CSU this year, can be vital to the success of international students.

“Not only do the students learn a lot, but we’ve built a community,” Hunter said. “It’s nice for them to know they’re not alone.”

Collegian Reporter Rachel Musselmann can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @rmusslemann.