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The INTO OSU Welcome Party, spilling from the ILLC lounge onto the lawn, got students outside and in a sporting mood after eating tons of pizza and listening to live music by Nick Rivard!

In this issue: What’s Coming Up?

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What’s happening in September?

New Additions

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Tursynay Issabekova

Conversant Program

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Updates, changes & improvements

Bike Parade

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A photo recap!

Latest Video

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Orientation + why choose OSU?

Asia Alumni Events

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Connecting with former students

Another academic year is upon us! This past weekend, VH1 aired a rerun of their top songs from the 2000s.

Teacher Feature

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With Mary Hughes

WOW. Doesn’t that seem like yesterday? And yet here it is, summarized into a 5-part series. It’s a reminder of time passing, correlating perfectly with the beginning of yet another academic year and the one-year

Upcoming events:

anniversary of the opening of the ILLC.

pBT TOEFL sign-up open until

INTO OSU is settled into its new home by now, having just finished the

are filled

second large fall term intake in the building. Most of us would say that, unavoidable kinks aside, orientation rolled out smoothly. Or, as No Doubt would say (though it’s not in our current vernacular), it was “hella good.”

Info Depot




Monday, Oct. 8th or until all spots GE/FE session 1 ends Friday, Oct. 19th


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What’s Coming Up? Dates, deadlines and more!

Portland Trip Saturday, Oct. 6 Sign-up open until Friday, Oct . 5th • $25 th

Rock Climbing Clinic Sunday, Oct. 7 Sign-up open until Thursday, Oct. 4th • FREE! th

Coast Trip Saturday, Oct. 13th Sign-up open Monday, Oct. 8th - Thursday, Oct. 11th • $25 Tailgate Party Saturday, Oct. 20th No need to sign up! • $7 advance, $10 at door International Fair Sign-up Tuesday, Nov. 6th Sign-up from Monday, Oct. 15th - Friday, Nov. 2nd • More info coming soon! Conversation Opportunities for Students The INTO OSU Conversant Program stands out as a great way for students to practice English and meet American friends. One hour per week for the duration of the term, the program has been a huge success and is very popular among students. Benjamin Kibler, the INTO OSU Student Engagement Coordinator, is bumping up the program now. Focusing more on cultural awareness, sharing their culture with their partners, and visiting key locations on campus, the students will get a more rounded experience. Mental health resources, cultural center locations, and campus resources get lots of focus, creating a structured way for students to explore campus. Sign-up for the program is open during the first week of each term.

New Additions to the INTO OSU staff!

Tursynay Issabekova Student Advisor About Tursynay: Tursynay graduated from Kazakh State University of World Languages and International Relations with her undergraduate degree in English Linguistics. She worked as an ESL Instructor for over 3 years in Kazakhstan at various universities. She moved to the US in 2007 and worked as an ESL Instructor at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island. She also wanted to live the international student experience herself and graduated with her second undergraduate degree in International Business. She enjoyed working as an ESL Instructor and living the international student experience. Most recently she worked in the Office of the Registrar at University of Oregon where she worked closely with faculty, staff, domestic and international students. She is excited to be a part of the INTO OSU team and be there for international students for their successful experience. Her role at INTO OSU: Tursynay will be assisting all units with student advising, but will not be doing any academic advising. We hope that her position will lessen the number of people within the Center that a single student needs to see to resolve a complicated issue. As this is a new role, we will be working with her and others to develop the best way for her to address student and INTO OSU Center needs. Tursynay’s office is in ILLC 181; stop by and say hello!

Conversation Club: Another great opportunity for students to practice their English, these conversation clubs do not require sign-up! Students can show up to any of the three times and jump right in. Karen’s Conversation Club: Every Tuesday from 6:15-7:15pm in ILLC 244 Daniel’s Conversation Club: Every Wednesday from 4-5pm in ILLC 345 Nick’s Conversation Club: Every Friday from 12-1pm in ILLC 455


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Bike Parade! Saturday, Sept. 29th

Benjamin Kibler and Tomoki Yoshida (Japan) taste test the local grapes!

A stop on the beautiful Willamette River was part of the bike parade.

Melody Slothower, Myung Jae Kim (Korea) and Rashad Alghamdi (Saudi Arabia) at the downtown farmer’s market.

The group refuels with Indian food at a local buffet.

Latest Video: Orientation

OSU hosts three events in Asia to connect with local alumni

Many of us know what it’s like to help with orientation, and in INTO OSU’s latest video we aim to let students know what it’s like before they arrive. Plus, we ask students why they chose to study at INTO OSU! Click here to watch the video on YouTube!

Attendees streamed into rooms in Taiwan, Indonesia and Hong Kong, greeted by OSU staff, including OSU Provost and Vice President Sabah Randhawa. The Provost’s speech reached out to alumni in an effort to promote OSU in their regions, inspire them to participate in local events, and give to the OSU Foundation. OSU’s efforts to promote a healthy people, planet and economy were on display at each event, with emphasis on how OSU’s impact is visible around the world. The event was successful, with hundreds of alumni attending, many with their families. OSU’s impact on the world is significant something the university is thankful to its alumni for helping make happen.


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Mary Hughes Instructor Mary has quite a story to tell after travelling to 69 countries and teaching in many of them! The Connection sat down to talk with her: What is your educational background? I graduated with a degree in International Business and Management from Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York in 1991. I earned my Master’s degree in TESOL from Seattle Pacific University in Seattle, Washington in 1999. What inspired you to become an ESL teacher? When I was in the Peace Corps in a small village in Senegal, a group of women asked me to teach them how to read and write in their native language, Pulaar. They didn’t have the opportunity to go to school when they were children because young girls had to stay home and help with chores, so being able to become literate was a great source of pride for them. They arrived beaming with excitement equipped with notebooks and pencils for the first class. When it was time to form the letters that matched the sounds, I saw that most of them did not know how to hold a pencil. This was very humbling, and I realized that we would have to start even more basic than I had thought. It was amazing for me because I really felt like I was helping them achieve something they had truly longed for, and with that tool of literacy they were more able to empower themselves to further improve their lives. This experience crystallized my decision to learn more about teaching language and to pursue a Master’s degree in TESOL so I could continue helping people in meaningful ways. Can you describe your classroom learning environment? My classes are lively and interactive. Students are usually working in pairs or small groups, and I plan a variety of activities to keep a good pace. A sincere attempt is made to maintain as much of an all-English environment as possible, and students know why this is important. I make sure that students learn each other’s names from the beginning through fun games and activities. I try to foster a comfortable, safe environment where everyone has the right to speak without being laughed at for mistakes or put down for a point of view. I hope to make the learning enjoyable so that they look forward to class. How do you handle students who struggle in your classes? As low-level students may be reluctant to come and see me on their own, I schedule conferences with all of my students at least once throughout the term. We talk about their progress and discuss their strengths and what they need to do to improve. What is the best advice you can give to students learning English as a second language? It is natural to feel frustrated with the speed of progress, especially when students compare themselves with others. I tell my students that they can’t give up and that language takes time, dedication and practice. So they have to deal with making mistakes and become an active learner in and outside of class. I praise them for how far they have come, and to evoke their desire for learning English, I ask them to remind themselves why they are here and what they want to get out of their education.

INTO Oregon State University Oregon State University, 1701 SW Western Blvd. Corvallis, OR 97333 USA T: +1-541-737-2464

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