“There is obviously great diversity on Mason’s campus—as you’re walking to class, you hear people speaking different languages and you can see the [diversity]—but there weren’t tons of opportunities to bring the groups together,” says Amy Reagan, coordinator of the LLC.
This fall, each of the 28 students participating in the LLC will be assigned a roommate from a different country or culture, attend events hosted by Reagan and the resident advisor, and take the same 1-credit Global Leadership course, which deals with cross-cultural communication and conflict resolution, current global affairs, and international resources on campus.
“The students who applied for Global Crossings know how valuable it is to have these experiences and develop these skills,” Reagan says. “It’s a very competitive job market, with globalization occurring at a rapid pace, and they want to be ready for it.”
This year, 10 American students are moving into the LLC; the rest are international students from the China 1+2+1 program and Russia’s Moscow State University, the Center for Global Education Exchange Program, and the English Language Institute.
“As we expand the number of international students, we need to work even harder to make sure they interact with American students to mutual benefit,” says Provost Peter Stearns. “We’re doing more, but there’s still a lot more that we can do. This new [LLC] is a very exciting next step.”