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Boiler Gold Rush International

BGRIBoiler Gold Rush International (BGRi) is a collaborative endeavor between the offices of Student Success, International Students and Scholars, and University Residences. This international student welcome and orientation was created to offer a safe landing space before beginning the adrenaline rush of Boiler Gold Rush and the excitement of the first week of classes.

But the meeting of needs for the new international students actually begins weeks before the students arrive on campus. Each new student is assigned a University Residences Global Leader, a cross-culturally trained returning student, to answer questions new students might have before embarking on their journey to the US. One of the most lasting memories is the moment the new student and Leader match a photo they have seen on Facebook or Renren with the face looking at them through the airport shuttle window.

And so, BGRi begins. UR Global Leaders and new students take trips to phone stores, banks, and Walmart. They move through sessions on immigration paperwork, academic success, Purdue traditions, and cultural differences. A cultural dance fair and a welcoming pep rally prepare the students for the adrenaline-charged Boiler Gold Rush activities that mix new students, whether domestic or international.

"So...What did new international students at Purdue do before there was BGRi?" One thing is for sure, there were far fewer Purdue students standing with a smile at the curb when the shuttles arrived, applauding and cheering their arrival, waiting just for our newest Boilermakers, to call each one by name, and to say "Welcome home!"