Global Citizenship on the Rise


Athena Pajer

New International Students enjoy dinner with FYEMs for the first time at Millikin in the cafeteria.

Arica Burns

International Student enrollment is on the rise. While most other universities are recording a decline, Millikin’s Center for International Education says that 95 students from more than 30 countries are going to Millikin. This is more international students than ever before.

This goes against the last year’s national trend.

“We have around 35 global exchange programs that allow us to bring students here and send students each semester,” Briana Quintenz, Millikin’s International Student Services Coordinator, said. “Some of the countries that we have brought students from are Greece, Austria, France, Ecuador, Spain, Chile, Rwanda, the Netherlands, Belgium, Colombia, Vietnam, Denmark, etc.”

Quintenz started a couple of years ago. Since then, international student population has more than doubled, representing several different countries.

As opposed to previous years, currently most of Millikin’s International Students come from Africa. A majority of these students are from Rwanda.

“My first year in the Fall there were about 30 students and 18 of those 30 were from France,” Quintenz said. “Now the population is much more diverse, and we are seeing students from a variety of different countries.”

According to Quintenz, international students are coming in waves to Millikin more than most Universities. She couldn’t be happier about it. This is because going to school in the Midwest, Quintenz pointed out, is a special experience – especially at Millikin.

“As you guys know, no student at Millikin can slip between the cracks,” Quintenz said. “We know every single student on this campus and someone here has a relationship with them.So, I think if that’s important to you as a student, then this is a good choice.”   

Her favorite thing about International students is being there to see them come out of their shell as the year goes along and breaks pass. Students will grow more comfortable as they spend more time in the United States, as their English improves, and as they have more experiences.

Now, many International students flutter in and out of the CIE. Elysia Han is one of them.

Han, a sophomore and the President of ISO, the International Students’ Organization, is from Seoul, South Korea. She has most definitely noticed a difference in the number of International students.

I can see they’ve increased a lot, maybe even double, and it’s not just one or two from one country,” Han said. “It’s three or four from one country.”

This is not the only change that has come about with International students. Han has noticed a change that has recently occurred that is different from her previous year at Millikin. She has noticed a difference in groups and the support of those group.

“There are more collaborative things like trips that we do together now, but before there were small groups that included the people they were friends with it,” Han said. “Now it’s like one big group so no one’s left out and they can get help from just about anyone.”

When it comes to getting help, students can  always turn to their professors, many who understand more and more what it’s like to teach students from all cultures.

“The professors understand our international backgrounds and how the curriculum is different, so they help us in any way they can without making it unfair in the classroom.” Han said.

The number of international students has increased this year and the CIE is excited for the changes. They hope next Spring or even next Fall will be just as great.