At the LaunchPad, we’re proud of our community of innovators and learners from 118 different countries. During Global Entrepreneurship week, we want to celebrate the diversity and richness of heritage that creates a more well-rounded community, but we also want to highlight the remarkable opportunities to learn and grow by becoming a global student. While not all encompassing, these are some SU resources that can help create communities for students from all over the world to connect and cultivate cultural understanding and appreciation.
The Center for International Services
The Center for International Services seeks to make Syracuse a home for international students and create a shared global community between domestic and international communities. It provides essential services to international students for practical living such as help for applying for a visa, how to apply for employment in the US, how to get US health insurance, and paying taxes. Beyond that, the Center provides valuable community groups to build a more connected Syracuse culture.
Every Friday evening, a mixture of domestic and international students gather to share a cultural meal and exchange dialogue about pressing social issues. Mix-it-Up is an initiative to build understanding and bridge the gap between international and domestic students.
Looking to increase your foreign language or English language skills? Conversation Groups partner you with a fluent speaker in your target language to foster increased language skills and greater cultural awareness.
The English Language Institute
ELI helps students from around the work achieve English language proficiency to help achieve success in education, work and life. Instructors are cultural and linguistic experts who can help in many areas ranging from housing to connections on immigration issues, enhancing academic success and finding campus and community resources.
An honorary society recognizing intercultural competence and international education, membership in Phi Beta Delta is built upon students who study abroad and are engaged in international research.
The best way to learn is by doing, and the best way to gain cultural competence is to step outside of your comfort zone to live in a different country. Syracuse University has some of the most excellent study abroad programs of an American University- from our five campuses in cities around the world to our World Partner Programs which allow students to study in almost any region of their choice, to the exchange programs which enable direct enrollment at another university. While study abroad may not be a current option for most in a pandemic world, take the time to dream about the future and what wonderful places you might end up.
If college is notorious for having every club you can think of, Syracuse University’s wide array of multicultural student organizations is no exception. From multicultural Greek Life organizations to student unions celebrating ethnic and cultural identity to publications championing global perspectives; Syracuse has everything you need to open your mind and learn as much as possible about the fascinatingly diverse world we live in.
Global community isn’t just built between students, but it can also be found in the increasingly global city of Syracuse. Syracuse accepts some of the most refugees of any city in the United States, and the city has burst with diversity of culture and background. Students can help foster growth and prosperity in the refugee community through volunteer programs that the Shaw Center offers, such as its partnership with the Northside Learning Center, where students can help tutor refugee students and teach refugees English.
Quick links to some of SU’s many global resources:
Building a community takes work and investment of empathy, but it is the responsibility of every single one of us. During our Global Entrepreneurship Week, we encourage members of the Syracuse community to pour themselves into cultivating a global community through the wonderful resources offered by the university.
Story by LaunchPad Global Fellow Claire Howard ’23