Print Edition: October 19, 2011
Students with a taste for cookies, hot drinks and good conversation have a new destination every Friday on campus: Baker house, where a tea time is now being hosted every week from 2:30-4:30 p.m. The gathering is very informal, and provides a relaxed setting for UFV students to attain a greater sense of community.
Adaly Molina, accommodation liaison for UFV’s International program, came up with the idea of Baker House Tea Time when she realized there was a particular need among the international student population to meet other students and form connections after being immersed in a totally new environment.
“It is difficult for these students to come to another country,” said Molina, “and many of them have expressed feelings of homesickness, or very real concerns over the potential difficulty of making lasting friendships while they are in this foreign country. The last thing we want is for these students to feel isolated while attending UFV.”
Molina recalled with a smile that her solution “was a matter of deciding one day that that I could sit in my office and wait for the students to come to me, or I could bring the help to them.”
“It’s about allowing these students to develop friendships and a sense of belonging in the student community,” she continued, “Tea Time promotes friendship, it promotes diversity, and it promotes community. It’s all about unification and giving students yet another medium to learn from each other and connect.”
This week’s Tea Time seemed to meet its goal of facilitating connections – a mix of both international and non-international students mingled, consumed snacks and hot drinks, and laughed with each other. As Tea Time is organized as a drop-in, various groups came and went. The setup is simple, and the atmosphere is extremely comfortable and casual. All students are welcomed to join.