Jane Wang and Jonathan Weller are part of the UC International Admissions team that has increased the number of international students at UC fivefold in the past five years.
More than 2600 international students attend the University of Cincinnati. This figure includes exchange students from universities all over the globe with whom UC has agreements. UC students are encouraged to take advantage of education abroad opportunities at these same international universities.
So how do international students discover UC? One way is through active recruitment by UC International Admissions staff.
UC employee Jane Wang, whose Mandarin name is Xiaoying Wang, used to be located in Beijing, China. She worked as a student recruiter and helped Chinese students with their decision to come to Cincinnati.
She has recently relocated to Cincinnati and now works on campus at the UC International Admissions Office, where she helps international students make UC their temporary home. She also continues to assist with recruitment of international students.
The recruitment attempts are very obviously successful. “The number of international undergraduate students was 200 just 5 years ago. Today it is 2000, so five times as high,” says Jonathan Weller, director of UC’s International Admissions.
A continuously increasing international community needs special attention. That’s one aspect of Wang’s new job in the United States. Being exposed to a new environment, a new phase of your life and a different culture can be quite a shock. In addition to that, a lot of people know hardly anything about this new place and might not be very confident about their English.
Wang helps incoming internationals have a smooth arrival and assists them with their daily struggles. She also reaches out to international students who are already here. She tries to help the international community get to know each other as quickly as possible. Furthermore, she wants to improve the communication between the internationals and American students.
Back in China, Wang traveled all over the country to attend fairs and to talk to potential future Bearcats. She pointed out UC’s selling points, translated positive newspaper articles into Chinese and informed students about the admissions process and what to anticipate when they went to the US.
Potential students, says Wang, consider four main factors before deciding which university to attend: location, ranking, tuition fees and job opportunities.
“Our amount of scholarships and the number of Fortune 500 companies in the greater Cincinnati area definitely improve UC’s stand,” says Wang.
“The one thing Cincinnati is the most famous for, though, are the coop-programs, and they improve the way students see their job opportunities by a lot.”
UC has full-time employees in China, India and Vietnam. Their job is to find people willing to study abroad and lead them to UC. In addition, UC cooperates with local companies to attract students to UC. Although UC’s approach seems to be successful, their goals for the future are even more ambitious.
“We want our staff in Vietnam to be responsible for a whole region and not only for Vietnam and we definitely try to broaden and improve our net of admission employees around the world. Our goal is to eventually increase the number of International Bearcats from the current 2600 to over 5000.”
Weller says they are also working to increase diversity at UC. Currently, more than a hundred nations are represented on campus. Three nationalities have the biggest share of UC’s international community: 1000 Chinese students, mainly at the college of business; 700 Indian students, who mostly study engineering; and 500 Korean students who are well represented in CCM.
At UC, all nations are welcome!