IPO: Your Portal to a Global Perspective

A map across from the International Programs Office features profiles of McDaniel students who have studied abroad. Photo by Nikki Krug.

Be prepared for more campus announcements than ever from the International Programs Office (IPO) as students are encouraged to expand their horizons through various events.

Jennifer Quijano Sax, the Coordinator of International Programs and Services, is hoping the programs will raise the number of students that explore study abroad options, increase the diversity of students that study abroad and debunk myths surrounding studying abroad. This spring, 22 students are studying abroad in 12 countries. In 2014, 75 students studies abroad throughout the year in semester, Jan term, and summer programs.

“I feel strongly that study abroad is possible for every McDaniel student regardless of foreign language proficiency, academic major, or budget.” Quijano Sax said.

Monthly events, such as Global Cafes, Pizza & Passports, and International Movie Nights, are geared towards educating students about the study abroad opportunities offered through the IPO, whether the decided or undecided about studying abroad.

The events also seek to engage students with a global perspective, something that Lucy Benson, a Global Fellow, encourages students to have. “Talking to people that are from different countries has been really interesting just because they provide a different perspective to information we already know,” Benson said. “I would encourage students to attend these events for a chance to think with a global perspective and just learn something new, beyond Carroll County and what they know.”

With 27 international students who hold F-1 visas in addition to recent immigrants, multi-national students and students with international backgrounds attending McDaniel, the IPO makes sure to provide events aimed at international students as well. Events are designed to make sure students comply with federal regulations in addition to adjusting successfully to life at McDaniel. One such event is the American Bowling Night on Feb. 13.

Although Quijano Sax is excited for all the events this semester, she is most excited for the trip to Washington, D. C. on April 11 and the IPO’s First Annual Photo Contest. She hopes the trip to Washington will appeal to international students, “study abroaders” (prospective and returned), Global Fellows, and other students.

The Photo Contest is for photographs of international experiences. The photos will be exhibited in the Hill Hall Lounge throughout April. It is partially a culminating event for the end of the academic year and partially a way to increase IPO’s visibility. Quijano Sax is interested to see what kind of interest the contest generates as well as celebrate students’ ability to go abroad.

Quijano Sax said that to see a photos of students who timidly knocked on the office door at the beginning of the year submit a photos of themselves actually abroad is inspiring and reminds her of why she does what she does.

Global Cafes are on Jan. 26, Feb. 23, March 23, and April 20 (all Mondays) in the Hill Hall Lounge. Pizza & Passports are from 7 to 8 p.m. and International Movie Nights from 8 to 10 p.m. on Feb. 12, March 5, April 2, and April 30 in Hill Hall 108. The IPO will take suggestions for international movies to show.

All of these events provide the opportunity to talk to IPO staff, international students, “study abroaders” and globally minded friends.

For more information on these IPO events (and more), stop into the IPO office in Hill Hall 105, email ipo@mcdaniel.edu, and keep an eye on the campus announcements.