New program softens landing for international students
By Mark Kerr, Senior Communications Officer
As the university seeks to increase the number of international students, units across campus are working together to help ease their transition to Queen’s and Canada.
One new addition is the Acculturation and Transition to Life and Academic Success (ATLAS) program, which is initiated by the Queen’s University International Centre (QUIC) in collaboration with several on-campus student services.
Susan Anderson, Assistant Director, QUIC, says ATLAS emerged from a desire to ensure international degree-seeking undergraduate students feel welcome at Queen’s as soon as they set foot on campus.
“We know that international students have the potential to enrich this university. The aim of ATLAS is to give international students that soft landing at Queen’s so they can more easily fall in with the rest of the first-year students and be part of it all,” she says.
On Aug. 30, ATLAS registrants can settle in to residence a day before official move-in for the majority of students and attend an optional reception where they can connect with other international students. The following day, the group will participate in a variety of activities related to cultural transitions, health and wellness, and academic resources such as the library and Student Academic Success Services.
Rather than throwing a lot of information at new international students, ATLAS offers participants experiential learning opportunities to help them adjust to Queen’s. They will participate in a variety of activities and explore the library in a small group setting.
“Through the ATLAS experience, international students will get to know the resources that are here for them,” Ms. Anderson says. “At the same time, the content of the program will suggest to them the important elements they will have to balance in order to have a healthy and successful experience at Queen’s.”
The deadline to apply for ATLAS has been extended to July 18. Visit the QUIC website for more details about the program.