Admissions student ambassadors serve as representatives of their college or university to prospective students. Current and former international students have the insights and experiences to provide invaluable guidance for prospects. As an international student or alumni yourself, you are intimately familiar with the challenges associated with applying to US institutions and moving to a new country.
Being a student ambassador not only enables you to provide tailored support to fellow international prospects but it also grants you valuable leadership experience. In this blog, we’ll dive into an ambassador’s key responsibilities so you can give back to your university in a meaningful capacity and enhance your professional skills.
What are the duties of a student ambassador?
The ultimate role of an admissions ambassador is to help prospects feel more comfortable and confident in the admissions and application process. By doing so, ambassadors can influence prospects to feel motivated and excited to apply for and potentially attend the institution. If your school partners with Interstride, your duties as a student ambassador will exist primarily online on the admissions portal. While your specific responsibilities may vary depending on your college or university, the general admissions ambassador duties are outlined below.
1) Provide mentorship to prospective students
As a student ambassador, you provide the peer-to-peer interactions that international prospects desire. Your impact extends beyond merely answering questions; you offer guidance that can significantly influence a student’s decision regarding where to apply to college in the US or whether to apply at all.
Since an international student’s admission journey is filled with many challenges, helping someone overcome an obstacle or clarify confusing details can go a long way. Whether a prospective student is seeking feedback on their application or has a question about campus life or the student immigration process, you’re in the best position to educate them.
To create a positive and supportive environment, it is essential for student ambassadors to proactively engage with prospective students on a regular basis. Initiating dialogue and maintaining consistent communication shows prospects you want to see them succeed. By taking an active approach in reaching out to potential students, you contribute to building a supportive network and nurturing a lasting positive impression of your institution.
2) Share from your own personal experiences
Prospective students want to hear from current students rather than admissions staff because they want to know what the school is like from their peers. Prepare to be a great student ambassador by thinking back to when you applied to the school and how it felt. Reflect on traveling to the US for the first time and what valuable experiences you had. Get vulnerable and share those experiences and feelings with potential students to show you can relate to how they might be feeling. Try to share stories that include positive endings, advice, or important lessons learned.
3) Foster community
As a student ambassador on Interstride, you may also be asked to foster connections between prospective students, admissions officers, and other student ambassadors through online groups. This provides additional opportunities for prospects to build a wider support system at your school. Depending on the different groups, you can connect with more than one prospect to share your relevant experiences and insights. Prospects and families may have questions about:
- Transitioning to living in the US for international students
- Specific academic programs and interests
- Living on-campus
- Financial aid and work opportunities
- How to find on-campus services for new students
4) Support incoming students in transitioning to US university life
The positive impact of student ambassadors goes beyond the admissions process to helping new students feel welcome and supported when they finally arrive on campus. This is especially valuable for international students because moving to another country to live and study can be very overwhelming. As an ambassador, you can continue to chat online with students and give advice even after they have enrolled in the school. This gives new international students someone to lean on during this major life transition and reflects well on the university or college’s reputation.
Represent your school as a digital student ambassador
You can see from the duties of student ambassadors that they are essential to actively engaging and supporting prospective students. Student ambassadors are relatable and approachable. Compared to admissions staff, ambassadors can speak from personal experience rather than reading off a script. Prospective international students want to chat with current students in the US, and digital student ambassadors fill that role. You may have an impact on their choice to apply to the school and make them feel excited to attend as an international student!