QUIC at 50: International Centre remains integral to campus life
The Queen’s University International Centre (QUIC) is many things to many people on campus. It provides crucial resources and support to international students, and it’s a home away from home, a safe space for both international and domestic students alike.
“It is a place away from the busy-ness of life where I feel, because the dominant Canadian culture is not present, I can acknowledge my South African heritage – I can just be,” says Mary Ceasar, an international graduate student who has studied at Queen’s since 2006. “The staff knows people come from different countries and they ask you about your home and culture – it makes you feel welcome and connected.”
QUIC, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, offers support to more than 2,000 international students on campus and a similar number of domestic students who pursue a portion of their education abroad each year. The centre enriches the learning environment inside and outside the classroom by exposing students to a wide range of cultural and national perspectives. It’s a place where many languages are spoken, where cultures intersect, and where strong friendships are made.
“As soon as you walk in, you feel the warm vibe,” says David Rakowski, a domestic Queen’s student who volunteers at QUIC through the English Language Support Program. “If you’re interested in culture, travel and having an international experience, this is where you go – QUIC is how you travel if you can’t leave Canada.”
Mr. Rakowski, who also works as a don and for one year oversaw the international floor in Jean Royce Hall, encourages all students – not just international students – to visit and use QUIC’s resources. “It’s really for everybody. International means everyone,” he says.
In celebration of its anniversary, QUIC is hosting a celebratory reception Thursday, October 11, 4 - 6 pm.