In early January the Education Abroad staff collected UA’s new international exchange students from the Birmingham, Alabama airport. The University of Alabama is excited to host seven new exchange students and eight returning exchange students this spring. These students come from institutions in Italy, Australia, Scotland, France, Japan, Wales, England and China! They spent their first day in Alabama driving to Tuscaloosa and checking into their on-campus housing, as well as making other necessary trips through their new college town to get them fully settled-in. The majority of exchange students stay in an internationally focused on-campus housing program, which offers a small co-ed atmosphere for international students and other UA students who are interested in interacting with students from other nations. For an authentic American experience they ate lunch at Buffalo Wild Wings, an American sports bar and restaurant. The Education Abroad staff enjoys introducing the exchange students to sweet tea, fried pickles, and ranch every semester.
The exchange students are always welcomed to The University of Alabama with an international student orientation where they are taught the classic fight song and taught how and when to say Roll Tide so that they can be accustomed to using it every day. The Capstone Men and Women spent an afternoon introducing the students to the beautiful campus and surrounding areas. The students really enjoyed getting to know campus and the staff even learned some interesting new fun facts as well. All together, we had a great day that concluded with a run to Target, because who doesn’t love Target?
The University of Alabama Education Abroad office also takes our exchange students on regular monthly expeditions and events. In the past, events such as trips to the Huntsville Space and Rocket Center, going to see a play in Birmingham, having dinner at local restaurants, and cooking a classic homemade Thanksgiving dinner have been educational and fun.