NISO: You Got a Friend in Me

My international group this semester has been NISO. That’s New International Student Orientation. I was driven to become a peer mentor for NISO because returning from my own study abroad experience, I decided I was in the perfect place to be able to help students as they took on their own abroad adventure.
I was paired with a veteran NISO peer mentor and we were given a lovely group of students to work with. The students were from eight different countries. We kept them up to date on events, held dinner parties, and spent time getting to know them. I tried to reach out to students each week to see what was going on in their lives and how their semester was going. It got difficult when I got busy and stressed. I spent less time with my group in person, but tried to make it a point to reach out on social media.
My best moments included small conversations. I loved the chance to talk with the students when they had cultural questions about, “Is this normal?” because I’ve been there and I was able to help answer their question and calm their concerns, because yes we do things differently here and that guy saying that was definitely flirting with you.
I hope to continue this experience next year. My intention is to be bolder and better connected to my group with activities better planned and make deeper connections with my international friends. I love seeing my web of connections grow. Hearing their stories pushes me on as I look forward to my next adventure, which is hopefully just around the corner.

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