October 21, 2014
Where are you currently working?
I am currently the Assistant Director of International Student and Scholar Services at Appalachian State University.
What are your main job responsibilities?
I am responsible for helping international students navigate complex immigration and university policies and procedures before, during and after their time at Appalachian. I work with our partners on campus to provide each international student with the support that he or she needs to excel academically and personally during his or her time at Appalachian. I coordinate a comprehensive orientation program for all new international students each semester. I also serve as the advisor to an internationally focused, university-funded student organization.
How did the International Education Management program at MIIS prepare you for what you're doing now?
In a broader sense, the IEM program gave me the opportunity to narrow my focus and find my niche in the field by exposing me to many areas of the industry that I had little experience with in my professional life before MIIS. Concretely, the IEM program has given me knowledge and skills that I use almost every day in my job and will continue to use throughout my career. The Institute's emphasis on intercultural competence has also been a huge benefit to me personally and professionally. Not only do I employ the intercultural skills that I acquired in multiple courses at MIIS on a daily basis when interacting with students and faculty, but I have even begun to facilitate intercultural communication workshops for students at Appalachian.
What is your fondest memory of your time at the Monterey Institute?
My fondest memories of my time at the institute are the many days I spent hiking the wilderness of the Central Coast with my wife, and my time playing and practicing with the Institute's softball team the MIISfits. There was also the time I played accordion while another student in the IEM program walked on stilts and twirled fire as part of a talent show. That's a fond memory too.
What advice would you give to current students on how to prepare themselves for a future career in this field?
First and foremost I am a strong believer that gaining some experience in the field is just as important as getting your advanced degree. Having experience and an advanced degree will make an even stronger candidate on the job market. Plus, having experience will allow you to make even more of your time in the IEM program. I can't say it enough. Network, network, network and then network some more.