Sue Sharp, Richland Center, began service as UW-Richland host family and cultural enrichment coordinator starting in mid-July. She’s working with people in the community and with University of Wisconsin-Richland international students to facilitate arrangements. Cultural enrichment aspects of her position include arranging experiences throughout the year to better acquaint international students with life in the USA.
Sharp knows well the host family experience. She’s hosted eight UW-Richland international students beginning in 1996 and, most recently, this year. A licensed respiratory care practitioner and full-time beekeeper, she has worked with youth in a variety of settings including 4-H.
With over 50 international students expected this fall, changes are being made to the mentor/community friend program, in particular that the students will stay in student housing rather than with a mentor. UW-Richland international students have an interest in meeting friends and making connections in the community and opportunities for community to engage with international students as mentors are available. Sharp will assist community people who wish to be involved, for example, to host a student for a meal, for home visits over the holidays, to invite a student to speak to their civic or student group, or to assist a local organization with a project or event.
Students in some of the programs stay with host families. While those students have been placed with local families for this fall, Sharp is interested in hearing from people who would like to host a student in the future. UW-Richland international students all speak English, have their own health insurance and spending money.
Those who would like to know more can contact Sharp for more information by calling her at (608) 640-9005 or on campus by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.