Alumni reach out to guide international students - Mid-Pacific Institute

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Alumni reach out to guide international students

The International Guest Speaker workshop series offers international students an opportunity to connect with international alumni.

Posted on September 26, 2017 by Scot Allen

The International Guest Speaker workshop series offers international students an opportunity to connect with international alumni to learn about their high school and college experiences, as well as their career choices.

"Originally, this started as a mentorship workshop for international students to give them the opportunity to learn from international alumni about their experience of being an international student at Mid-Pacific and beyond," said International Student Coordinator Stephanie Toriumi. "I also wanted to reach out to international alums to give them the chance to connect back to Mid-Pacific in a simple way, even though they might not be here in Hawaii."

Toriumi started the program last year with one optional workshop each semester, with guest speakers Yoshinori Tanaka '12 and Ruowen Lu '16. Building on the success of last year's workshops, she opened it up this year to any interested middle or high school student since there may be a few local students interested in learning more about attending college abroad or having an international career. The next workshop in the series is with Miga Lee '11 in February.

Photo above: On Feb. 20 Nijitoshi Nakajima '11 talked with Mid-Pacific's international students via Skype.

"I hope the program will continue to grow so that we see more alums and students participating in the future," she said.

These workshops allow students to ask questions in preparation for college. For the international students, the alumni have a bigger role as a mentor who is able to answer deeper questions:

"What do you wish you knew before going to college?"

"Why did you choose that college?"

"How did you make American friends and learn to speak English so fluently?"

"What challenges did you have as an international student and how did you overcome those challenges?"

"It's wonderful to see the alums helping to inspire the next generation," Toriumi said.