International Educational Experience Scholarship
As EAP grew exponentially, PIP needed a few more helping hands to lead campus tours and interact with the international students during their stay. The International Friendship Club (IFC), a UOG student organization, was just the group for the job. By devoting a portion of their time to volunteering with PIP, the members learn more about the Japanese and Korean cultures while making lasting friendships.
After four years of volunteering her time to EAP through IFC, senior English major Angelenne Serafico was not only surprised at how much she learned about others but also about herself.
Angelenne Serafico (left) holds hands with colleague Kyru Cabading as they wear traditional Korean attire during an international education experience study abroad in 2014.
“My most memorable moment was when I went to the airport to see off a student group and one of them broke down crying in front of me,” Serafico said. “He was the last one to go to the gate and told me, ‘One day, I just want to be as happy as you are when you smile everyday.’ I didn’t know something as simple as a smile could inspire a student like that. From then on I thought, I should smile more often if it makes other people happy.”
Another added benefit to volunteering with EAP is the chance to earn a fully-paid trip to PIP’s partner universities in Asia. With the money earned from hosting international students PIP established a fund, the International Education Experience Scholarship, that UOG students from any major or student organization could tap into for study abroad opportunities at 24 partner universities. To date, 30 students have participated in the travel program. Serafico said after four years, she earned enough credit for two trips—both to Korean institutions—to study language and culture while reconnecting with the international friends she made on Guam.
“You don’t expect to make lasting friendships with the international students because they’re just going to be here for a short while,” Serafico said. “You’d be surprised at how many of the students we hang out with stay in contact. And when I went to Korea, they all wanted to meet up and be my tour guide.”
International Education Award
University of Guam Senior Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs Dr. Anita Borja Enriquez accepted the Innovation and Excellence in International Education Award by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities in a ceremony on October 30 in Miami, Florida.
For the development and success of the ever-growing English Adventure Program, PIP was awarded the International Education Award by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) in October.
The AASCU award program honors member institutions for excellence and innovation in several major areas of campus life and leadership, and because of its public-private partnerships; financial benefit to the University; and most importantly, its cultural and educational development for both local and international students, AASCU chose to highlight and honor UOG’s English Adventure Program.
“Receiving the AASCU award in International Education is a huge honor,” Taitano said. “We’re a very small institution in a very remote place in the Pacific, and to be nationally recognized for all of our hard work means a lot. It is a badge of honor that we can now take to all of our partner institutions and show them that we are a world-class program.”