On Thursday, November 12, 2009, the first Monterey Bay Area International Advisors Association (MBAIAA) meeting was held at MIIS . Kathy Sparaco and Shawna Routh in the Office of International Services invited international student and scholar advisors from Monterey area institutions to meet each other and discuss the need to create a local professional group. Along with Patrcia Szasz, advisors from UC Santa Cruz, CSUMB, Hartnell College, Cabrillo College, and the Educational Consortium Institute enthusiastically discussed the need for such a group. International student and scholar advisors are critical to the internationalization efforts of an institution as they provide support in the area of immigration advising, compliance and to students and scholars throughout their entire academic or professional careers. Preparing for SEVIS II, international student recruitment, budget constraints, and mental health issues of students were identified as areas where group members could provide support and collaboration. The next meeting will be held hosted by Cabrillo College with a focus on best practices for orienting international students on our campuses.
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