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Cecil and Jeffery Research International Student Engagement

Cecli Jeffery

by Jewel Caruso

Ben Cecil (PhD 2022) and Justin Jeffery (PhD 2021) co-authored an article recently published in the Journal of Higher Education Policy and Leadership Studies. The paper, "International Student Engagement: Closing Gaps and Internationalizing Student Affairs," was released in the December 2022 issue.

International students experience many challenges at US Institutions; such as, language barriers, misunderstandings of their culture and background, underrepresentation around campuses, and a lack of intentional programs designed to promote and support engagement experiences.

Cecil and Jeffery's research covers the importance of engaging international students in campus life, and the challenges and barriers these students may face. The study explored the co-curricular engagement of international students to investigate what motivates students to get involved, engagement opportunities and barriers for engagement. The data for this study came from a focus group participation for undergraduate international students at the University of Georgia, which began prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The results, obtained by a mixed-method approach in this research study, "allowed the Department of International Student Life at the University of Georgia to supplement and elucidate existing data on student engagement with a deeper understanding of the international student perspective on campus."

Overall, Cecil and Jeffery highlighted practices and opportunities for student affairs practitioners to consider and use in their programs. To read the full article, visit here

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PhD, 2022

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