April 7th, 2016: The International Student “Do It Yourself” Tax Workshops were held at Simmons College on February 24th and April 7th. A record number, over 110 students from all six campuses attended the sessions. The purpose of these workshops was to assist students in accessing resources to file their 2015 taxes. The International Student Admissions and Advisors Committee (ISAAC) decided on new tax software this year called Foreign National Tax Resource (FNTR) which includes Massachusetts state tax preparation as well as Federal tax preparation. Thus far, 176 licenses have been used by COF international students to help them file their tax documents, a 28% increase over last year.
April 18th, 2016: The GEO Center hosted a field trip to the Boston Marathon as part of the U.S. Department of State’s mandatory “cross-cultural” component for the J-1 Exchange Visitor program. The group met at Athan’s European Bakery in Brookline to cheer on runners as they passed the 23-mile marker. Five exchange students from Mass Art learned about the significance and history of the Boston Marathon from our two domestic group leaders. The visitors enjoyed the experience and felt it was particularly unique to their semester of studying with the Colleges of the Fenway.
April 2016: The GEO Center held two pre-departure orientations in April for COF students studying abroad in the summer and fall 2016 terms. The first one was held at Simmons College on Tuesday, April 12th, 2016 and 31 COF students from 3 campuses attended. The students interacted with study abroad returnees, participated in a cultural simulation activity and learned about safety and emergency precautions before studying abroad. Over 40 COF students signed up to attend the pre-departure orientation on Wednesday, April 28th at Emmanuel College.
April 25th, 2016: The Multi-cultural International Student Organization (MISO) at Simmons hosted the International Culture and Food Bazaar on Monday, April 25th at the Simmons Colleges Fens Café. MISO successfully collaborated with ASA, OLA, SASS, SISS, Simmons and Wheelock International Organization as well as the GEO Center to encourage all COF students to attend. Participants had the opportunity to try foods from different countries around the world and interact with students from many different cultures.