International Student Life
Cranbrook Kingswood recognizes that international students face unique challenges upon arriving at our boarding school in Michigan. They may be away from home for the first time, missing their families and support systems, or finding it difficult to focus on the demands of schoolwork within a foreign environment.
Cranbrook Kingswood recognizes that international students face unique challenges upon arriving at school. They may be away from home for the first time, missing their families and support systems, or finding it difficult to focus on the demands of schoolwork within a foreign environment.
As a community that values a diverse student population, Cranbrook Kingswood has implemented programs, described below, that assist international students in adjusting to and enjoying their time at school. All the programs designed to support international students at Cranbrook are intended to provide an enriching, embracing atmosphere where students feel at home and safe within their new surroundings.
At the beginning of the academic year, the new international students attend an orientation program during which workshops and activities are organized to help them adapt to the varying academic and social expectations and experiences of Cranbrook Kingswood School. At this time they also are acquainted with their host families from within the Cranbrook community who will provide them the opportunity from time to time to experience American home life.
International students arrive at school needing various levels of support. Some students have a relative or family member in the Midwest. Other students are alone in the United States, without relatives or families outside of the school community. Therefore, Cranbrook Kingswood’s Host Family program makes every effort to provide a welcoming family environment for international students who cannot return home for American holidays (i.e. Labor Day and Thanksgiving) and extensive school breaks.
The Host Family program is a unique way for Cranbrook Kingswood students, families, and faculty members to embrace their international community. Host families find that opening their homes to international students for an evening meal or over a school vacation not only provides a support system for the students but is an excellent opportunity for local families to learn about different cultures as well.
Receiving a card in the mail, seeing a familiar face in the crowd at a sporting event or performance, or sharing a Thanksgiving meal, these students appreciate all the efforts of host families. Families interested in hosting an international student should contact Katherine Apsey in the International Student Program office.
Informal events such as pool parties, dinners at local ethnic restaurants, and trips to community cultural events, introduce Cranbrook’s international students to a multi-dimensional look at life in and around campus. Outings for international students are designed to familiarize students with their new surroundings while forging connections with local culture and local communities of international populations. Outings are fun, easygoing opportunities for international students to feel at home, and at ease in their new environment.
Enjoy an expressive presentation of Arabic belly dancing. Be amazed by the powerful art of Tae Kwon Do. Learn the quiet precision of Chinese calligraphy, and explore African dance through the ages. There are more than twenty countries represented in the Cranbrook Kingswood student population and World Night is an annual celebration of all the unique cultures and traditions that comprise the Cranbrook Kingswood Educational Community. In addition to the many presentations and performances by students and faculty, participants are invited to sample foods from around the world at World Night’s special dinner of international cuisine known as A Taste of the World at Cranbrook.
Social challenges exist for every high school student. Do I fit in? How do I balance schoolwork and extra-curricular activities? Who shares my interests? While all students can relate to these questions and concerns, international students may have heightened fears of social integration when attending a school in a foreign country. Therefore, Cranbrook Kingswood’s Mentor Program has been established to quell some of the international student’s apprehensions.
The program pairs a seasoned Cranbrook student with a new international student, establishing bonds of communication and friendship. The peer-to-peer approach successfully addresses student doubts and worries in a non-threatening and friendly manner. Students are free to share feelings about their experiences in a candid, supportive atmosphere that provides an outlet and open forum for expressing personal concerns and questions.