Educational advisers from 18 countries (e.g., Peru, Kazakhstan, Bosnia, Malawi and Argentina) traveled to Lexington on April 29 to attend a weeklong Training Institute where they learned to navigate the complex process of applying to U.S. colleges and universities.
The University of Kentucky, Georgetown College and Bluegrass Community and Technical College (BCTC) were selected to host the Training Institute by EducationUSA, a U.S. Department of State-supported network of 400 advising centers around the world. The centers are based in embassies, university campuses and nonprofit organizations abroad, such as Fulbright commissions.
“The overall goal of the Training Institute is to provide accurate, up to date, information so the advisers can help international students find the right opportunity,” said Carlton McLellan, senior manager for adviser professional development at the Institute of International Education.
EducationUSA holds three two-week Training Institutes a year in the U.S. The first week is held in Washington D.C. where the advisers attend workshops on leadership development and learn about the importance of a U.S. education and how it can promote diplomacy between the U.S. and other countries.
The second week of the Training Institute – held on UK, Georgetown and BCTC’s campuses in April –covered international student experiences, admission processes, international student support services, financial aid and many other aspects of U.S. higher education.
“Hosting the Training Institute is an opportunity to share our expertise with the advisers – and I do believe we have a lot to offer – especially as a group of institutions,” said Audra Cryder, international representative for UK. “The insights and feedback from the international advisers helped us improve our processes and meet the expectations of international students.”
According to Susan Carvalho, associate provost for international programs, the Training Institute was also a great opportunity to showcase the state of Kentucky to an international audience and show how UK, Georgetown College and BCTC provide a soft landing for their international students and a high-quality education.