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How to be a great student ambassador

interstride logo by Interstride
July 22, 2023

Did you know, 74% of international prospects have questions they want to direct to current students? Being an admissions student ambassador is an excellent way to give back to your college or university and the international student community. You can directly influence and help prospective international students by answering questions, chatting with them, making them feel welcome, and even giving virtual campus tours.

What is an admissions student ambassador?

As an ambassador, you represent your university or alma mater and serve as an authentic voice for prospective students. This is a wonderful chance to showcase the school’s offerings and diversity, and instill excitement in prospects considering attending the institution.

Admissions ambassadors are reliable advocates that international prospects can turn to for information and guidance. Whether prospects have questions about the application process or university life – you have firsthand experience that you can share. Something as simple as having conversations can actually be quite impactful. As an ambassador, you can help potential students feel embraced and supported while helping your institution attract more international students.

Joining your university’s ambassador program is a great opportunity to:

  • Connect and inspire potential students
  • Give prospects an insider scoop on the international student experience
  • Gain volunteer experience and develop leadership and communication skills

5 ways to be an amazing ambassador

With the right preparation and expectations, you can serve your school well. Below are six ways to be a great digital student ambassador at your college or university:

1) Be sincere and build trust

It is crucial to provide honest and genuine peer-to-peer interaction with prospects. They want to know that you are being sincere when you answer their questions and when you share about your experiences at that school. You know firsthand that navigating the admissions and application process as an international student can be challenging and intimidating. Considering the pivotal role that college plays in shaping their future, international applicants may experience feelings of being overwhelmed and under pressure throughout the application and admissions period.

Therefore, as an admissions ambassador, it is important to check-in consistently and purposefully to signal support. These small actions will let prospects know that you care about their success and that you are here to ease any concerns they may have about applying to and attending the institution. Always be sincere when interacting with prospective students and their families. Having a trusted peer to lean on during this process can also increase a prospective student’s trust in the institution.

2) Be proactive and nurture relationships

Building meaningful relationships takes time and active effort. Take the initiative to reach out to prospective students before they have questions. When you do get questions, respond as promptly as possible. According to the QS International Survey, 94% of international prospects say they don’t want to wait long to hear back. Considering how busy admission officers can be, ambassadors can fill in the gaps and check-in with students more casually and regularly.

As an ambassador, you’re also uniquely positioned to share applicants’ most pressing issues and questions with staff so they can better understand and support prospects. This enables admissions teams to be proactive rather than reactive about meeting the needs of prospective international students.

3) Use strong communication skills

All communication with prospects and their families should be clear and concise. Whether you are responding to an email, chat request, or connecting virtually over video, you should also be calm, open, and welcoming.  When possible, relate to the emotional challenges international prospects face, but remember that you are representing your university. While you want to be relatable and personal, you should also remain professional. Strike the right balance between formal and informal communication.

4) Embrace a positive attitude

International students come from a variety of different cultures with different beliefs, customs, and communication norms. Having a positive attitude as a student ambassador can enhance your ability to build rapport with prospects and leave a favorable impression. Your energy can motivate prospects to feel excited, confident, and welcome, making it more likely for them to consider applying and attending. Ultimately, as an admissions ambassador, your attitude reflects not only on yourself but your school. A positive attitude helps to strengthen the institution’s reputation, attract more prospective students, and contribute to a vibrant and thriving international community.

5) Manage your time well

We know college students often have busy schedules. Good time management and organization is essential. To balance your course load, student ambassador responsibilities, and other extracurricular activities, set aside specific times for each activity just as you would for class time. Reach out to prospective students regularly to ensure you are building genuine relationships and providing adequate support.

Be the best student ambassador you can be

Being a great student ambassador means providing great advice and guidance to prospective students, sharing your authentic experiences, and positively representing the school. If you follow the tips above, you will surely excel in your school’s student ambassador program. The cherry on top? You’ll gain invaluable leadership and professional experience while giving back to your international student community.