Interested in becoming an International Programs Student Ambassador?

If you have studied abroad on any of the business programs (UF in Beijing, UF in London, UF in Madrid, UF in Dublin, UF in Paris or UF in Rome) or on one of the 30+ business exchange programs through Heavener, you are eligible to apply for the International Programs Student Ambassador (IPSA) program. You do not have to be a business major or minor to serve as an ambassador.

The International Programs Student Ambassadors is a group of study abroad participants who assist the Heavener International Programs staff in the promotion of the School’s study abroad and exchange programs. The Student Ambassador program provides students with the opportunity to enhance individual skills in interpersonal communication, public relations, advertising, public speaking, and writing. Members are also encouraged through various activities to continue developing their intercultural awareness and personal growth which began when during their time abroad.

The application for the IPSA program is due along with a resume the first week of each semester. After the initial review of applications, a selection of candidates will be invited to participate in a group interview. Consider joining this exciting and vital student group and continue your international affiliations after returning to campus.

Benefits:

  1. Obtain training in study abroad advising and the work of Heavener International Programs
  2. Enhance leadership, teamwork, and communication skills
  3. Utilize global knowledge and cross-cultural communication acquired from your own study abroad experience
  4. Have the opportunity to work with faculty, staff, and students across campus
  5. Gain a unique experience to post on your resume and to talk about in interviews
  6. Reflect on and recognize your new identity gained from study abroad while sharing this with a group of like-minded peers

We are now accepting applications for the 2018-2019 IPSA program.

Applications are due along with a resume Thursday, August 23 at 11:59pm.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I be an IPSA if I went on a study abroad program outside of the Business school?

No, however we do encourage you to consider the UF International Center Study Abroad Peer Advisors (SAPA).

The main role of IPSAs is to promote Heavener study abroad programs and exchanges. To do this effectively, you must have studied abroad on one of the business study abroad programs (UF in Beijing, UF in London, UF in Madrid, UF in Dublin, UF in Paris or UF in Rome) or one of the 30+ business exchanges.

I loved my study abroad, and I like the idea of sharing my experience with my peers. Is that the main idea o f the IPSA program?

In some ways, yes…but the IPSA program involves much more than just sharing your best travel stories. Our group is both outward and inward facing, you should expect to gain personal and professional development through your involvement with the program. It is our desire for IPSAs to continue developing intercultural awareness and personal growth which began during their time abroad. This requires members to go below the surface of their experiences to identify undiscovered lessons learned and meaningful connections to future goals.

What are some examples of the events I would participate in?

As an IPSA you would have the chance to represent Heavener International Programs at events such as the UF Study Abroad Fair and Business Bash. Each semester IPSAs volunteer to deliver study abroad presentations to Warrington Welcome classes and various student groups. You would also be instrumental in the Pre-departure and Survival sessions for outgoing students. IPSAs also meet at least twice a month for meetings/training, organize special events and have a semester retreat!

What would be my biggest responsibility as an IPSA?

There are two, your biggest responsibilities will be:

  1. to ensure that you make yourself available as a resource and a tool for peers seeking your advice and help; and
  2. to assist the Heavener International Programs office as a volunteer–the most impactful IPSAs are well-known by every Heavener study abroad advisor, simply because they are an engaged and present.

There are participation requirements each semester to ensure every member is contributing to the overall IPSA team, as well as developing as an individual.

Are there leadership opportunities available within the program?

Yes! After the first semester IPSAs are required to join a committee or complete a special project. Committees include the IPSA Retreat Team, Special Events, Digital Content, Social Media and Meetings. One experienced IPSA is appointed as committee chair for each committee. These chairs serve under IPSA Directors (Membership, Communication & Outreach). The Directors are responsible for meeting with the IPSA advisor, keeping informed on committee happenings and a variety of designated tasks.

I have a full course load and I am active in other groups, what is the time commitment?

Each semester, IPSAs are expected to attend and participate in bi-monthly meetings/trainings, the semester retreat, and volunteer for events. Events include tabling opportunities, classroom presentations and special outreach socials and information sessions. Some events will be required, though the majority are based on a sign-up system. Current and past members praise the flexibility of the program.

Is there a mentor-like element to the IPSA program?

Depending on your time and ambition, you can meet prospective students for one-on-one discussions in which you will have the opportunity to give a unique glimpse into the excitement and scholastic benefits of participating in study abroad. However, this is mostly self-initiated and will depend very much on conversations you chose to have away from organized IPSA events. If you are available to your peers, they will value your perspective. These relationships can be very meaningful and IPSAs have become informal mentors to their peers in this way.

Is the process to become a member of the IPSA program competitive?

Yes it is, especially in the fall because students returned from spring and summer programs are applying for 15–20 spots. At this time, the program is limited in size to no more than 50 members at one time and most members maintain their membership for 1 to 2 academic years. This requires a thorough application process complete with an online written application for first screening and group interviews for those who move past the initial online application.

The ideal candidate is able to genuinely and enthusiastically share the impact study abroad has had upon their personal, academic and professional development. We understand each individual has areas in which they can grow – and we look forward to helping students do this, so don’t be discouraged from applying.

Essential must-haves include:

  1. willingness and ability to follow through with commitments and volunteer time;
  2. enjoyment when working with and learning from others;
  3. accountable to teams and timely in communication

Lastly, it is important for us to consider the overall composition of the group. The London and Madrid programs are consistently the most well attended, as such, we receive a lot of IPSA applications from students on these programs. However, we strive for representation from every program. This means students from the London and Madrid programs have a larger pool of applicants in their group as compared to Rome or Paris.