Journal article Open Access
CindyAnn Rose-Redwood; Reuben Rose-Redwood
As the number of international students pursuing higher education abroad continues to increase globally (OECD, 2017), college and university campuses have the potential to serve as key spaces of cross-cultural learning and the cultivation of international friendships. Yet spatial proximity and intercultural contact do not always result in meaningful interactions between different social groups (Wessel, 2009). Various studies have shown that interactions between domestic and international students rarely result in cross-cultural friendships within higher educational settings (Trice, 2004; Gareis, 2012; Rose-Redwood & Rose-Redwood, 2013). This disconnect between international students and host communities is often attributed to the failure of the former to “adjust” to the latter. However, as Ryan (2011) argues, international students are not simply “problems” in need of a solution by university administrators but rather “provide an opportunity for the co-construction of new knowledge and more collaborative ways of working and thinking” (p. 631 and 642). While much attention has been devoted to the challenges that international students face, there is also a need for scholars to consider innovative pathways toward building meaningful relationships between domestic and international students.