According to The Institute of International Education’s (IIE) Student Census, the number of international students studying in the US rose to an all-time high in 2008–09. JWU’s student population mirrors this upward trend. Currently, more than 1,700 international students from 97 countries attend the university. Ken DiSaia ’87, ’92 MBA, vice president of enrollment management, pinpoints Asia as the region of significant growth. “Approximately 60% of our international students come from this region, mostly from China.” Among the thousands of US colleges, IIE ranks JWU 106 overall and sixth in graduate international enrollment. “We’re honored to be such an influence internationally, but our job isn’t just to recruit international scholars; it’s also to educate, retain and help them feel at home here,” notes DiSaia. “It starts with Admissions and spans faculty, staff, alumni, students and communities.” JWU is constantly refining the services, programs and activities offered to international students. Groups like I-Club, run for and by students, help bridge communication and cultural gaps. Providence’s Friendship Family program matches international students with local families, allowing both to gain perspective on unfamiliar cultures and leading to lifelong friendships. And student-run groups like Providence’s Chinese Student Association and North Miami’s International Community help students meet others from their native countries. The International Center at the Providence Campus recently employed Barnga, a card game, to foster intercultural awareness. “Adjusting to the new game, new people and new rules without even basic information was challenging, frustrating and sometimes funny,” notes Providence Campus School of Arts & Sciences instructor, Erin Wynn. But it fueled brainstorming around the challenges of cross-cultural encounters, languages, cultural assumptions and academic differences that international students face.