What are Intercultural Aides?
Intercultural Aides are undergraduate student staff members who work in the residence halls to help students makesuccessful social, cultural, and academic transitions at Michigan State University. MSU students come from many different backgrounds and cultural experiences, sometimes from different parts of the world, and when first entering MSU, it is often an overwhelming experience. Therefore, Aides are responsible for providing individualized student contact, informing students about the numerous resources on campus, and providing opportunities for students to meet and interact with students of different cultural backgrounds and experiences. Along with other residence life staff like Resident Mentors and MRULE student leaders, Aides plan engaging and informative activities that bring individuals as well as groups of students from diverse racial, ethnic, international, and domestic backgrounds together to engage, explore, and learn about issues of academic transitions, culture, social class, geography, religion, race, gender, and ethnicity. Working as a student staff member of the Office of Cultural & Academic Transitions, the Aide serves as a student leader, role model, peer educator, and resource person. The Aide’s overall goal is to help create an inclusive environment within both the residence halls and the University at large. To gain a better understanding of the Aide job, please ask a current Aide, contact a staff person in OCAT.
State News article: “Cultural aides help encourage diversity”
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Intercultural Aide Teams 2013
(click images to enlarge)
What are Intercultural Aides saying about this life-changing experience?
“If you feel like your not doing enough to help your fellow students on campus and you know you have it in you to LEAD them in the right direction, you NEED to be an Intercultural Aide. That is only a small part of what being an AIDE means. I guarantee you will not leave this campus the way you came and neither will the students you encounter as an Aide.”
— Lydia Vanderbilt (Aide ’08-’10)
“Being an Aide gives me opportunities to learn about others and myself. It has been an eye-opening experience for me.”
— Brian Zhou (Aide ’10-present)
(Read more Intercultural Aide testimonials)
What is Interculturalism?
(Videos created by Intercultural Aides)