By Cristina Vintimilla —
In January, AUC welcomed over 50 exchange students to Amsterdam Science Park, including the largest number of American students yet.
According to Marcus Smit, team leader of the Services and Communication support staff and AUC’S Internationalisation Office, about half of AUC’s students are from the Netherlands and the other half are foreign, which comes as no surprise, seeing as AUC stresses the importance of a culturally diverse learning environment. Throughout the autumn and spring semester, 40 American exchange students enrolled into AUC.
Smit works with the international relations of 23 AUC partner universities including the University of Melbourne, University of Toronto, and Boston College. He guides students from the initial application process to their first day on campus and says American students find it easier to attend a university like AUC as the liberal arts and science courses can easily transfer to their home universities.
According to The Institute of International Education, the number of Americans studying abroad has tripled over the last 20 years from 71,000 to 283,000 students.
AUC has 24 committees that welcome exchange and full-time students to come together through social activities like yoga classes or weekly debate sessions.
Maedot Yidenk, 18, is an exchange student from the University of Washington and has been living in Amsterdam for about three months. She has been able to adjust to the new environment by attending AUC events like an international brunch hosted by the Cuisine Board.
International Cuisine Brunch in the AUC dorms.
“At home, I always had brunch with my friends, it’s a great time to relax and catch up,” said Yidenk. “Now I’m able to try different kinds of food with a new group of people that come from all around the world.”