ISSS Intercultural Workshop Series

The Intercultural Workshop series combines intercultural competency and skills development workshops and "Culture In-Depth" sessions discussing the unique practices, customs, and values of some of the largest international student populations on our campus.

Each session helps UMN staff members gain greater cultural self-awareness, an understanding of the contributions of international students, and communication skills to improve interactions and relationships with international students, staff, and faculty.

Participants must register for each session they wish to attend. PLEASE NOTE: While most of the sessions will be held virtually, one is held in-person. Registrants should check Training Hub for the location. Email [email protected] with any questions.

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Socially Just and Interculturally Inclusive Approaches to a Re-opened Campus

January 20, 2022
10:00 a.m.

The return to campus has been made by the majority of students and staff. As we readjust to working, studying and advising in person how do we implement the benefits of socially proximate activities, while retaining the benefits all of us learned during our virtual year. This session will draw on both the intercultural and social justice fields to help participants uncover opportunities for inclusion for all students as we return to campus.

Learn more and register

Understanding International Student Experiences To Better Support Their Academic Journey

February 1, 2022
10:00 a.m.

Understanding the experiences of international students is an important first step to continue to build your intercultural skillset. In this session, we will learn what international students have said about their experiences both inside and outside the classroom through targeted listening sessions, survey results and individual interviews. As a group we will discuss ways to minimize barriers and maximize opportunities based on the student themes and feedback.

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5 Intercultural Competencies for Advising International Students

February 9, 2022
10:00 a.m.

Learn how communication, parental expectations, and cultural values affect advisors' ability to provide timely and effective guidance for international students during this interactive workshop.

This training is intended for new or seasoned advisors, career counselors, and student services staff who work with international students.

Learn more and register

Bridging Cultural Differences

February 22, 2022
3:00 p.m.

When interacting with those from around the world, an understanding of the relevant values of all participants will help to create positive connections. While it may be easy to adapt to obvious differences in eye contact or handshakes, it is more difficult to take actionable steps to address more hidden value differences, such as hierarchy or independence. Participating in this experiential workshop will allow you to identify problems or opportunities that stem from cultural value differences. As a result of this identification, you will be able to effectively connect with students and colleagues from different cultural backgrounds.

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Disruptive Practices for Interculturally Inclusive Communication 

March 1, 2022
10:00 a.m.

As we strive for a more socially just, equitable, and inclusive campus, there is an opportunity to revisit our ways of communicating and interacting across differences to create spaces of belonging for all.  Drawing on improvisational and language acquisition practices, this session will help participants explore and appreciate more equitable intercultural communication strategies. Building off this exploration, we will practice puckish techniques to flatten hierarchical systems while increasing overall comprehension and co-creative meaning making.

Please note: This session will be held in person.

Learn more and register

Culture In-Depth: Chinese Students at the UMN

March 16, 2022
3:00 p.m.

Like many other higher education institutions across the U.S., the University of Minnesota has seen a significant increase in the size of our Chinese student population over the last ten years. Approximately half of the international students at the University are from China, and these students bring unique experiences and curiosity to our campus. During this workshop, a panel of Chinese students will share their personal stories about interactions on campus. From their discussion and other interactive exercises, you will learn about the academic choices Chinese students make and how unique aspects of Chinese culture (such as collectivism, face saving, and shame) impact the student experience. Walking away from this workshop, you will be better able to connect with Chinese students and help bring their talents and perspectives to the forefront in the classroom and student life.

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Communicating with International Students

April 14, 2022
3:00 p.m.

When attempting to navigate new systems at the University of Minnesota, international students can be confused by the U.S. American approach to conversations, instructions, and explanations. Likewise, staff and faculty often wish they understood the cultural expectations and communication styles of international students, as well as had stronger skills in listening to accented English. This interactive workshop will be your opportunity to share, learn, and practice actionable approaches to communicating and connecting with international students, staff, and faculty (including those who are working in their second, or even third or fourth, language).

Learn more and register

Last updated: March 23, 2022