Launch of #UConnGlobalAtHome

A UConn Global Affairs Initiative

Written by Nicholas Hampton, Multimedia Project Specialist
April 20, 2020

The University of Connecticut’s Office of Global Affairs is excited to announce an opportunity to help keep UConn Nation connected through #UConnGlobalAtHome. The new initiative was officially launched on April 10 and announced by Director of International Student & Scholar Services Rae Alexander during the Virtual Town Hall for International Students hosted on Tuesday, April 14.

The movement is part of the greater UConn Kindness initiative intended to inform, engage and connect with students throughout the University during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s specifically intended to help international students stay connected to each other and to the UConn community,” Alexander said.

Many international students are far from home, loved ones and friends and the UConn community is working hard to show support for them, Thomas Katsouleas, President of the University of Connecticut assured.

“We know this global pandemic has been hard on everybody but it has been especially hard for our international students...,” Katsouleas said. “We want you to know in particular that we support you and that we care about you.”

The goal is to support students feeling isolated and encourage cross-cultural bonding with a sense of common humanity during this difficult period by providing virtual spaces that foster a sense of global community at UConn while students are self isolating.

Students can sign up for live virtual activities led by classmates and visiting scholars who are looking to share what being part of a global community at home means to them. This is an opportunity to have fun, engage with others and discover a new talent in the safety of your home.

The first live session was hosted by Global Affairs Multimedia Project Specialist Sahil Laul, and guided by former Husky Bhangra captain and UConn Alumna Sanjana Javeri on Wednesday, April 15. Sanjana taught a step-by-step modern Bhangra dance that was full of energy and excitement. The session can be viewed on the Global Affairs YouTube page.

#UConnGlobalAtHome also offers an International Scholar Mentor Program. UConn’s international scholars will hold virtual office hours to serve as mentors for international students who are looking for additional help. The scholars will have conversations and perform activities with students to help decrease feelings of loneliness by connecting through similar cultural or linguistic backgrounds and academic and social interests.

If you’re feeling isolated or feeling lonely just reach out, Dan Weiner, Vice President of Global Affairs, said during the Virtual Town Hall.

“There are over 3,000 international students and visiting scholars that have stayed in Connecticut,” Weiner said. “We really want you to reach out to us as we reach out to you.”

If you’re interested in attending or guiding an activity you can visit the Virtual Cultural Demonstrations page, or browse the International Student & Scholar Services website for more information about resources UConn is offering.

Students are encouraged to post photos, videos, or words on social media with the hashtag #UConnGlobalAtHome to show what being global at home means to them.

We are inquisitive. We are innovative. We are driven. We are optimistic. We are global. We are Huskies and we will get through this.