The St. Olaf College mission statement commits to incorporating a global perspective. Each year about 40-50 students from various parts of the world join the St. Olaf College community, as well as American students who grew up outside of the U.S. International Student Counselors make the very first impressions on our new international students – and so they play an essential role in our welcome.
International Student Counselors enjoy a unique position of leadership on the campus. They gain a whole new world of friends and enjoy multicultural experiences more intensely. For someone who cares and shares, who is curious and willing to help others, being an International Student Counselor is an opportunity that will help the Counselor grow in sensitivity and global perspective.
A person serving as an International Student Counselor should possess the following qualities. These qualities are essential to fostering individual and community development.
- The position of International Student Counselor is a full-year postion— highly demanding of personal motivation, self-discipline, and maturity.
- The International Student Counselor is expected to abide by all college policies and regulations.
- The International Student Counselor must have a working knowledge of all aspects of St. Olaf College to appropriately assist, advise and serve as a liaison between students and other members of the St. Olaf community.
- There must be a sensitivity and concern for others as individuals and a personal and professional commitment that goes beyond outlined responsibilities.
- There must be demonstrated emotional maturity necessary to cope with day-to-day decisions involved in maintaining healthy living conditions within the residence hall and on the floor.
- The International Student Counselor must be committed to continued growth and development as a counselor, as well as personal growth, taking care to budget personal time for study, work, and relaxation.
- The International Student Counselor is a role model for the international student community. The position demands integrity, responsibility and a positive attitude.
- International Student Counselors must be in good academic standing. If, during the year, an International Student Counselor is placed on academic probation, his/her status as a counselor will be reevaluated to determine whether the position has a detrimental effect on his/her academic performance.
- An individual may be terminated from the International Student Counselor position for failing to meet the expectations of the position as described below or if his/her actions conflict with the policies of the Residence Life Staff and/or St. Olaf College.
- International Student Counselors will be expected to attend the International Student Banquet in early May.
- If you have a US drivers license, please plan on attending one Drivers Training Session as soon as possible and stay for the behind-the-wheel section for the 12-passenger van.
- Helping to develop an atmosphere of concern and respect for each other.
- Developing a positive personal relationship with the counselees.
- Establishing and maintaining open communication with the International Student Advisor.
- Making an effort to be aware of student attitudes, academic difficulties and health problems and assisting in the resolution of student concerns.
- Within the limits of training and capability, advising and counseling students on academic, personal, and social matters and making referrals when appropriate.
- Being aware of existing individual backgrounds and if necessary communicating about them with the advisor.
- Acting as a role model in academics and general areas of community living.
- Personally abiding by College policies and regulations.
- Being committed to personal growth and self-improvement, allowing ample time for study, work and relaxation in personal schedules.
- Acquiring a working knowledge of campus referral services for students in need of specialized help (including the Health Service, Food Service, Counseling Center, Financial Aid, Academic Support Center, the Dean of Students Office, Center for Vocation and Career, International Student Office, Academic Advisors, etc.) and encouraging students to use these resources.
- Working with College resource personnel, including the International Student Advisor, Associate Deans of Students, Residence Life Administrators, Counselors, Pastors, Nurse, etc.
Programming & Responsibilities
- Communicating with new students during the summer.
- Assisting with the arrival of new international students.
- Helping students throughout Week One orientation sessions.
- Meeting with counselees on weekly basis.
- Planning and hosting social activities for international students.
- Being available to assist students when they need it.
- Attending regular meetings (both group and individual) with the International Student Advisor.