January is National Mentoring Month. The GTI Mentorship Program aims to connect international students to working professionals in the NC State and local communities. Mentors are part of the PACK (Professional, Accessible, Compassionate, and Knowledgeable). Sandy Canfield is the assistant director of partnerships and resource development for the North Carolina Space Grant. She shares her thoughts about the benefits of mentoring in a brief Q&A.
Professionals have a lot to share that can benefits students, but looking at my experience through the lens of a global student of today has reminded me to keep my skills and means of communicating fresh and up-to-date.
The Spring 2018 semester had an icy start, with snow falling the day before most new international students were due to arrive in their temporary home of Raleigh. Hundreds of new SKEMA students as well as degree-seeking and exchange students, however, landed on campus the first week in January. The Cultural Exchange Network (CENet) is just one of hundreds of options for these students to get involved on campus and interact with other NC State students, but the CENet Leadership Council has been hard at work prepping for a full semester of opportunities for NC State students to gain some global perspectives outside of the classroom. And despite a snowy setback after the MLK Jr. holiday weekend, the crew has already co-hosted UAB’s Global Karaoke Winter Welcome Week event and coordinated a very well-attended Speed Friending social!
Mauricio is the recipient of the CENet Study Abroad scholarship this semester. He’s spent the fall semester in Quito, Ecuador at Universidad San Francisco de Quito.
Here are two of his recent blog posts:
See why Stars Wars is such a big deal for USFQ.
“The month of September is proof that Ecuador is a mesmerizing, beautiful, and captivating country with so many different places to visit and learn from.” – CENet Scholar Mauricio Carrillo
Find out more about all the adventures Mauricio experienced during the month of September:
CENet Scholar Jael Garner spent last spring studying in Spain and recently spent some time reflecting on her semester abroad. Students who are interested in going abroad can attend the Study Abroad Fair on Thursday, October 12 from 10 am – 3 pm in the Talley Student Union Ballroom.
“Study abroad was one of the most amazing things I have decided to do so far in my life. Before it all started I didn’t really know what to expect, what the whole experience would be like or how it would even be like to live in Spain. I was able to make some of the most amazing friendships and connections in my life from class, city events, and at home. I studied in Madrid, Spain and there are many exchange students who do their “Erasmus” or study abroad experience there. I made a lot of Spanish friends but surprisingly my closest friends turned out to be Portuguese, French, German, and Australian.
My favorite things of the experience were the food, the fashion, and the travelling. I won’t lie I did miss the occasional Bojangles stop and other American type foods like ribs and such- but I did learn a lot of new recipes while I was there. My favorite foods were paella, jamon iberico, croquetas, and the Spanish tortilla OMG. The fashion was definitely different I am a fan of European fashion in general but when I first arrived it was so overwhelming. Everyone shops at Zara or Bershka among many other stores and it was always amazing to see students during class online shopping or even walking down Gran Via seeing all the people shopping. I soon fell in and starting going on a shopping craze as well because well come on its fashion. My last top favorite thing was the travelling. Flights are so cheap especially from the airline Ryanair where most my flights cost about 20 to 30 euros. While in Spain I travelled to Italy, Germany, Belgium, Ireland, France, Switzerland, England, Portugal and throughout Spain. Of course 20 euros per flight can add up if you travel a lot not to mention food and travel expenses within the country but it’s worth it definitely. I suggest if you plan on studying abroad in Europe to save a bunch of money to travel!!
My university was Universidad de Complutense. I am a Biology major and if you are in the sciences I really recommend studying abroad even though you think you might not be able to. The school was so different- it was very open aired with graffiti all over the building inside and out, the police aren’t allowed to enter the campuses, and there were often strikes. I clearly didn’t have a car so to get to my university I had to take the metro and then a bus to campus, like most students.
This opportunity was amazing and if I were given this opportunity again I would definetly do it. I recommend everyone to study abroad even if it is during the summer or spring break it is an unforgettable experience.”
On a beautiful football Saturday in September, twenty-four diverse students came together for a full-day training on topics of leadership and intercultural competencies. These students represent 11 nationalities and various multicultural backgrounds.
The Office of Global Engagement, along with the Center for Student Leadership, Ethics and Public Service designed the Intercultural Leadership Summit as a student professional development opportunity during which students expanded their network, gained cultural competence, and developed skills for effective leadership.
After completing the Summit, students have successfully completed the first three workshops of ten required for the Leadership Development Program and earned 7 hours of co-curricular credit for the Global Perspectives Certificate.
Find other opportunities from the Office of Global Engagement here: https://global.ncsu.edu/events/
The GTI Mentorship Program aims to connect international students to working professionals in the NC State and local communities. Mentors are part of the PACK (Professional, Accessible, Compassionate, and Knowledgeable). Tim Rhoads works in the field of supply chain consulting. He is the managing partner of Kelekent Systems, Inc. Tim became involved in the program because he has a passion for guiding people who are young in their careers or their roles and has previously mentored college students and new hires during his corporate career.
Tim’s experience with the mentorship program has been positive and beneficial:
“The program is new and evolving, but well organized and managed. A primary objective when I joined the program was for the time invested to be beneficial to both me and the mentee. That objective has been fully met from the very first meeting with Yuantong. The program structure both supports and enables the mentor / mentee relationship, and the time invested, to change focus as appropriate for the relationship. As Yuantong’s schedule and focus changed through the semester and he learned more about the area, we were free to adjust our objectives. Yuantong and I are excited to pursue more objectives as soon as he returns from his summer research project. From resumes to networking to professional references to internships our relationship has grown and opened more options to pursue this semester for our mutual benefit.”
To find out more about the program, visit go.ncsu.edu/GTImentor.