A photo of eight people standing next to each other.
New international students at this semester’s International Student Orientation, which welcomes students to campus as they begin their educational journey at VCU. International Education Week is Nov. 13-17. (Global Education Office)

International Education Week offers opportunities for international and cultural awareness

A series of events at VCU throughout the week will celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange.

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Virginia Commonwealth University will celebrate International Education Week from Nov. 13 – 17 as the Global Education Office recognizes the university’s efforts for globalization throughout the school. International Education Week is a joint initiative between the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education, and is an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. This joint initiative was first held in 2000, and today is celebrated in more than 100 countries across the world. 

The theme of the week this year is “International Education is the Future.”

"This year's theme addresses international education and the future, and the events that we have planned at VCU reflects this theme,” said Jill Blondin, Ph.D., associate vice provost for global initiatives. “We want to celebrate globally engaged individuals and the many ways in which they play a part in making our community and the world a better place."

The Global Education Office will host a series of events throughout the week to celebrate VCU’s global initiatives. These activities and events will bring awareness to global engagement and internationalization efforts at the university. The scheduled events offer a wide variety of engagement, including a reception and information session for students, staff and faculty interested in learning more about the new L & L Friendship Scholarship Fund that will assist with study abroad funding; a reception celebrating VCU international scholars who provide valuable contributions to the university in the area of research; and a panel discussion with globally engaged VCU alumni who will discuss their experiences and encourage student interest in the global workforce.

Scheduled events and activities for International Education Week include:

  • VCU International Student Achievement Series

The VCU International Student Achievement Series consists of virtual advisor-led workshops, focused on topics relevant to the university’s F-1 students. During IEW, there will be four workshops on the following topics:

    • Nov. 14, 9 a.m. - Post-Completion Optional Practical Training
      This workshop is intended for students who are graduating at the end of the current semester.
    • Nov. 15, 10 a.m. - F-1 Travel
    • Nov. 16, 3 p.m. - Curricular Practical Training
    • Nov. 17, 10 a.m. - Pre-Completion Optional Practical Training

Register for the workshops

  • Coffee and Conversation with Phi Beta Delta

Tuesday, Nov. 14
11 a.m. - 12 p.m.
912 West Grace St.
3rd floor, Room 3126

Hear about Phi Beta Delta, the honor society dedicated to recognizing scholarly achievement in international education. Speak with members of the society and find out how the organization can help during your time at VCU.

  • Faculty-Led Study Abroad Showcase

Tuesday, Nov. 14
2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Student Commons, Virginia Room B

Take a virtual tour of the extraordinary excavation site of Pompeii, led by Sant'Anna Institute archaeology faculty.

  • ELP Tea Time with Rodney the Ram
    Wednesday, Nov. 15
    10:30 - 11:30 a.m.
    912 West Grace St.
    3rd floor lounge

Enjoy coffee, tea, snacks and conversation with old and new friends. Rodney the Ram will make a special appearance to help celebrate international students. All are welcome for this fun-filled time of connecting with each other.

  • Rams Around the World: International Alumni Meetup (Virtual Event)

Wednesday, Nov. 15
12 p.m. - 1 p.m.

Tap into VCU’s global alumni community with this Rams Around the World webinar. Join internationally located and global-minded alumni to meet, network and hear from fellow Rams about their unique career paths and life abroad. Includes networking breakout rooms and a question-and-answer session with a panel of global alumni.

VCU Alumni Panelists:

    • Aisha Kamara - foreign affairs officer at U.S. Department of State
    • Oscar Kemp - Fulbright English teaching assistant - Uganda
    • Jada Moss - assistant general counsel at The Brookings Institution
    • Razmila Razaak - program coordinator, Global Outreach
  • Budgeting While Studying Abroad

Wednesday, Nov. 15, 3 p.m.
912 West Grace St.
3rd floor, Room 3126

This event is designed for VCU students preparing for a study abroad experience during the winter break or spring semester to learn more about how to prepare and stick to a budget while abroad.

  • L&L Friendship Fund Reception for Students, Faculty, and Staff

Wednesday, Nov. 15
12 - 1:30 p.m.
Student Commons, Richmond Salons II & III

Come out to celebrate the announcement of the L & L Friendship Fund, established to help students with demonstrated financial need study abroad. Study abroad returnees will speak about the impact of their global learning experiences, and Global Learning staff will present an information session about the new fund and ways all students can access study abroad affordably. Light refreshments will be served.

Register for the reception

  • Boren Scholarship Info Session
    Thursday, Nov. 16
    2:15-3:15 p.m.
    National Scholarship Office
    701 W. Grace Street, Room 1210, or via Zoom: vcu.zoom.us/j/83712120714.

Join the National Scholarship Office and Boren Awards representative, Michael Saffle, program director, for this workshop on the Boren Awards application's national security question. While Boren has a broad definition of national security (including food insecurity, global economies, public health and more), students are expected to have a narrow one that aligns with their skills and interests. Saffle will offer advice on how to approach this essay question and help workshop participants think about their own answers.

Register to attend

  • J-1 Scholars Reception

Thursday, Nov. 16
3:30 - 5 p.m.
Student Commons, Richmond Salons III & IV

A reception will recognize the scholars attending VCU on a J-1 visa. The occasion will feature Fotis Sotiropoulos, Ph.D., provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, who will speak about the accomplishments of the scholars and contributions they make to VCU.

Attendance to this event is by invitation, and those interested may RSVP for the event.

  • Tour of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts for English Language Program Students

Thursday, Nov. 16
12 -1 p.m.
VMFA, 200 N Arthur Ashe Blvd.

Level three English Language Program students will tour the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and have the opportunity to share their experiences, cultural perspectives and thoughts about selected works of art from the permanent collection at the VMFA. Students will be accompanied by Jane Nucup, immigration advisor.

  • Study Abroad and Career

Friday, Nov. 17
Noon - 12:30 EST
Instagram Live @Santannainstitute

View an interview with Chad, Jenny and Paula, Sant’Anna alumni with successful career stories after their impactful study abroad experiences. Learn how their study abroad in Sorrento, Italy changed their life and influenced their future job opportunities.

Several of the scheduled events require registration to attend. Those interested in attending are encouraged to sign up for any events with registrations.

Learn more about the university’s celebration of International Education Week and scheduled events and activities.