Taking International Students Seriously
International students enhance diversity in many high schools and universities throughout the United States, enriching experiences of other students on campus while developing their own educational experiences. Schools that have a strong global presence often have a wealth of ethnic groups and cultural events which allows international students opportunities to share their traditions with their fellow American peers. But, what many schools do not recognize is the significance of these international students. Rather than appreciating the wealth and knowledge of different cultures that international students provide, many schools underestimate the educational abilities of the international students and, thus taking them less seriously than American students and neglecting multiculturalism.
When discussing how international students are taken less seriously in American institutions it is important to focus on both the social and educational factors. Socially, many international students find it difficult to fit in due to cultural discrimination. For example, women who wear saris to represent their heritage find it difficult to integrate with campus life and suffer unpleasant experiences. This type of discrimination makes international students feel uncomfortable to reach out to other students; they feel that they are not taken seriously because of their cultural customs (Lee and Rice 385). They also perceive Americans as those who lack desire to appreciate or comprehend other cultures. Therefore, they feel alienated by other students. Even though it may not be intentional, such ignorance and expression of irrelevance of other cultures can ostracize and downgrade anything un-American which is interpreted to international students as rejection. International students also feel the burden of not being taken seriously because they feel like “uninvited guests” and “lack trust in the professional...
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