A delegation of students and administrators from Tecnologico de Monterrey in Mexico (Monterrey Tec) arrived on Virginia Tech’s campus Sept. 8 for a three-day student affairs exchange. The exchange encouraged those from both institutions to share ideas, practices, and resources, as well as provide a cross-cultural experience with college students from an international peer institution.

The visiting Monterrey Tec delegation of 16 students and eight staff members includes seven prefectos (resident advisors); Reynold Lizcano, residence life director; and Jocelyn Milan, director of female residence halls. A group of Virginia Tech student leaders who live on campus hosted the 16 students.

“We are delighted to host our friends and colleagues from Monterrey Tec,” said Gerry Kowalski, director of residence life. “We are particularly excited about the opportunities this visit presents—including having fun, meeting new friends, and learning new things—for all the students involved.”

This exchange program—called Tec-to-Tech Connections: Building an International Partnership between Tecnologico de Monterrey in Mexico and Virginia Tech—won the Global Partnership Program award in NASPA International Education Knowledge Community’s 3rd Annual Best Practices in International Education and Learning Awards. Tec-to-Tech promotes international competence in faculty, staff, and students through international opportunities in professional development, research, teaching, and cultural exchange. The program promotes exchanges not only through the Student Affairs office, but through academic areas and between students of both universities, as well. The partnership promotes staff and student exchanges in food services, student government, resident advising, counseling, community development, higher education, student affairs, and academics.

Other activities generated through the program have included a leadership conference in Mexico attended by Virginia Tech student government leaders, a meeting in Mexico attended by community-development and service-learning personnel, and a conference in Mexico attended by residence advisers from both schools.

Virginia Tech and Monterrey Tec joined Hollins University, Roanoke College, New River Valley Community College, and Radford University for the annual Blue Ridge Summit Sept. 10 in Squires Student Center. This summit, “Leaders under Construction,” was an all-day conference and focused on skill building and peer learning.

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