5. Being responsive
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After the initial period of transition, most international students prosper without any major difficulties, but inevitably some will find it more difficult to settle in, and occasionally an international student may need more support than the pastoral care that we are able or competent to offer. If an international student is putting in effort yet getting poor results, it may be that there is an underlying difficulty and they may ask for advice.
We also need to be aware that some international students may be on the receiving end of unfavourable attention within or outside the university, due to stereotyping or political conflicts.
We may need to advise international students to consult support services. It is important to know what services students are entitled to and which they may have to pay for; where the services are located; and if some students may be reluctant to use these services for cultural reasons.
Confidential support from counselling, money advisors and the international student office, plus specific support for learning, accommodation, religious and spiritual issues, and security are amongst the provisions available in many institutions. The student union usually facilitates a number of support groups and international societies. The security services are normally very well equipped to support students in difficulty and are generally contactable at all times day or night.