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Despite low turnout, DiscoverUFV’s future optimistic

DiscoverUFV is designed to support new international students experiencing Canadian life and culture for the first time. The program’s five-week calendar of events aims to give new international students information regarding UFV campus resources and Canadian government processes.

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By Jeffrey Trainor (The Cascade) – Email

Image Credit: UFV Flickr

Image Credit: UFV Flickr

UFV International’s supplementary information program DiscoverUFV had a rocky start this past Friday, September 11.

The first session, discussing immigration, had to be cancelled due to no attendance — while the second session on recreation ran with limited numbers.

DiscoverUFV is designed to support new international students experiencing Canadian life and culture for the first time. The program’s five-week calendar of events aims to give new international students information regarding UFV campus resources and Canadian government processes.

This is the first year the DiscoverUFV program is running for international students. Global Engagement Programming Coordinator Chelsey Laird says the program gives students information — while orientation was more social.

“The focus of orientation was more on building meaningful connections between students,” she says.

The DiscoverUFV sessions are weekly — more of a step-by-step guide to university life rather than an overwhelming amount of information presented at one time in previous orientation sessions.

Laird says DiscoverUFV will cover topics as they become applicable throughout the course of the semester. For instance, the last sessions on October 9 — nearing midterms — will host a member of UFV’s counselling department to highlight smart study skills. ”There was a conscious effort to pick themes that were appropriately based on the experience of a student in their first five weeks of university,” she notes.

Laird says she isn’t too concerned by the lack of participation. “[UFV International is} playing around with times and with different methods of advertising,” she says.

The September 11 seminars were only advertised on the new My Campus Life page, but that has since been expanded to the UFV International Facebook page and emails to new international students about the sessions.

Laird also mentioned they are conducting a survey at the conclusion of the DiscoverUFV seminars for all the new international students on the program to collect feedback for running it in upcoming years. Laird is hoping the results of the survey will be available by November.

DiscoverUFV is open to all new international students. This week’s session surrounds the Academic Success Centre and they run from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and again from 2:30 to 4 p.m. on Friday, September 18. Registration is required.

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