Familial Values of the International Students Initiative

One of the most rewarding experiences that tertiary education institutions have to offer are the instances in which you meet a variety of interesting, daring, and downright fantastic people. BCIT, being partners with other business schools and institutes around the world, prides itself on the influx of international students that have skills and knowledge to offer to the already enriched environment of the business school and other schools. Primarily, this adds to the cultural aptitude in which the school possesses. The result of such a collaboration is brusquely captivating, where the students that come together become a community that simply enjoys their semester of both academic and recreational endeavours. In my time at BCIT, I find that the element that constitutes the significance of mateship is, but not limited to, the symbolism of a pint of beer; but also the essence of which the individuals of the said group binds in its own sense of unity. Connecting with international students and their respective cultures is exemplary of that unity. As the semester progresses, the people you meet along the way become your best mates, and you will find yourself almost dependent on them to brighten up your day as you endure the melancholic days of school in the fall term.

In the months leading up to the rebirth of the long-forgotten International Students Club, I volunteered in the orientation event and was part of various other collaborations with the students and coordinators. Admittedly, I only participated because I saw a chance to get a free feed and volunteer experience on my CV. I ended up with good mates on my contact list and two or three new languages learned, which was my favourite part. As an enthusiast of the study of linguistics and communication, I constantly seek the opportunity to find new ways to communicate, and otherwise, build my vocabulary bank. My interests were piqued as the year progressed, and the international students community only seemed to grow larger.

The International Students Center (ISC) at the SW1 building had recently been organizing a variety of events and functions that brings students together. The most recent function was a dodge-ball tournament with food and drinks at the SE16 building. The choice of activity was odd to me at first, but getting hit with foam balls in the spirit of aggressive yet endearing sportsmanlike banter was somehow appropriate. The turnout for this was greatly successful judging from the scenes. Approximately seventy to a hundred students from different faculties filled the distinguished racquetball halls of the rec building, and everyone I saw there were people whom I had encountered from the different areas of the school that I’m a part of. For example, my workmates, past classmates, fellow on-campus residents, fellow sports teammates, casual buddies met in passing and the latter; all of which I had either seen once or more times were there.

Travelling to a place far from home to stay there for a long time is a great feat. The experience is highly rewarding, especially when given the opportunity to insinuate yourself into a gradual acculturation process. I love Canada, ice hockey, mountainous landscapes, Northern Hemisphere weather and everything else in the past ten months that I had experienced all of it. However young and ambitious you may be, home is always the place of solitude to return to after grinding for your educational success. As an international student myself, I can appreciate the great lengths that the department goes to in order to accommodate for a welcoming experience.

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