International students speak on campus climate

Photo courtesy of Xavier University | International students make up about three percent of Xavier’s population with 175 students enrolled, but some are concerned with campus climate.

Two weeks ago, Ese Obrimah’s article “Is Xavier for and with its students?” highlighted low funding in the Center for International Education (CIE), low attention to the international student population’s involvement on campus and even the discouragement for the growth of diversity within the campus.

Ese included in her article that 22 percent of the incoming class of 2021 categorize themselves as racial minorities. That number includes people who have lived their entire lives in the U.S. with their family of non-U.S. heritage. According to the CIE, there are 175 international students currently at Xavier. That makes up about three percent of the entire class of 2021. Xavier’s mission statement says, “In an inclusive environment of open and free inquiry, we prepare students for a world that is increasingly diverse, complex and interdependent.” However some, like Ese, believe that this is not reflected in the annual decrease of the international student population.

During interviews with international students, one of the most frequently mentioned topics was the political climate of the United States. Students, especially from the Middle East, are potentially afraid of what was going to happen to them throughout and after receiving their college education.

One reason for this is that there is only one part-time international admissions counselor to handle all of the international student recruitment as well as regional recruitment within the U.S.

Students expressed that Xavier places priority on the income from the international students’ family rather than on bringing diverse racial and socio-economic perspectives in their classrooms.

Xavier preaches its goal of “preparing students for a world that is increasingly diverse, complex and interdependent.” But some international students feel as though they have been left behind in funding and attention as the emphasis fades on bringing in more students of all racial and socio-economic backgrounds.

By: Hyehyun Hwang ~Guest Writer~