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Pavelko: What is CSU doing to help international students feel welcome?

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Collegian | Trin Bonner

Editor’s Note: All opinion section content reflects the views of the individual author only and does not represent a stance taken by The Collegian or its editorial board.

Over 1,850 people at Colorado State University are international students, making up less than 6% of the student body. They come from all corners of the world, with a large percentage of the international student body hailing from China, India and Indonesia. 

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With a large number of international students and the rate continuously increasing, is CSU doing enough to accommodate its international student body?

There are many factors to consider in order to help international students feel as comfortable as possible. Accommodating their diet, providing adequate housing and respecting their culture are essential to welcoming international students. Whether they are transfers or first-year college students, CSU tries to extend support and accommodation to international students through the International Student and Scholar Services, which provide international students and scholars support. 

“I am really thankful to the international office who dealt with me, … and they are doing everything to make my accommodations easier,” said Yasmin Uddin, a first-year international student from Bangladesh.

ISSS has advisors to offer support for international students during their applications and throughout their time at CSU. They offer a wide range of services for international students to adjust to CSU as seamlessly as possible. 

“CSU does its best to show respect and appreciation for all cultures. With students coming from various parts of the world, it is important to be respectful of cultures you might not know about or completely understand. Yet most students here at CSU are quite welcoming and accepting.” 

“(People) are very welcoming,” Uddin said. “They always smile at you. … People are very kind. Outside of students and staff, people who live in Fort Collins are very welcoming.”

Among accommodations for international students, events are hosted for international students to help welcome them to CSU’s campus.

CSU hosts international days at several sporting events, including soccer and volleyball in the fall and tennis in the spring. International students are encouraged to attend sporting events to learn about the games and cheer on their fellow Rams, which helps introduce them to the CSU community and American culture. There is also an annual Football 101 event held during the fall semester, inviting international students to learn about the rules of the game, practice the CSU fight song and even get the chance to throw around a football themselves. 

In addition to events that expose international students to American culture, some events teach American students about other cultures. This year, the 68th World Unity Fair will be held Feb. 17, 2024, in the Lory Student Center. Including cultural booths, stage performances and international cuisine, the fair is designed to be a way to promote different cultures at CSU. 

CSU does its best to show respect and appreciation for all cultures. With students coming from various parts of the world, it is important to be respectful of cultures you might not know about or completely understand. Yet most students here at CSU are quite welcoming and accepting. 

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“Before coming here, some of my family members were nervous because I wear a hijab,” Uddin said. “I look different, but there has been no judgment.”

If these trends persist, CSU will continue to welcome more international students to its campus. As an institution, CSU must remain as accommodating and welcoming as it can be. As a student body, it is important to be understanding and respectful of our fellow Rams.

Reach Hana Pavelko at letters@collegian.com or on Twitter @hanasolo13.

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About the Contributor
Trin Bonner, Illustration Editor
Trin Bonner is the illustration editor for The Collegian newspaper. This will be her third year in this position, and she loves being a part of the creative and amazing design team at The Collegian. As the illustration editor, Bonner provides creative insight and ideas that bring the newspaper the best graphics and illustrations possible. She loves working with artists to develop fun and unique illustrations every week for the readers. Bonner is a fourth-year at Colorado State University studying electronic arts. She loves illustrating and comic making and has recently found enjoyment in experimental video, pottery and graphic design. Outside of illustration and electronic art, Bonner spends her free time crocheting and bead making. She is usually working on a blanket or making jewelry when she is not drawing, illustrating or brainstorming.

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