Become a Peer Advisor

Peer Advisors work alongside the Office of Education Abroad to help promote study abroad, recruit study abroad participants, and guide students throughout the study abroad process.

 

 

share your story

By studying abroad, you experienced something that most UNC Charlotte students have not. You've explored other languages & cultures, developed into a stronger person, encountered obstacles & overcame them, and embarked on an adventure you'll remember forever. Being a PA means you get to share your story with UNC Charlotte students, faculty & staff, which not only helps promote study abroad, but helps you keep your memories of your international experience alive!

Be A Part of the journey

You know how life-changing studying abroad can be. Imagine being able to encourage other UNC Charlotte students to go abroad so that they can have their own life-changing experience just like you did. The ability to assist prospective UNC Charlotte students throughout the study abroad process is exciting and rewarding.

networking & personal connections

This program gives you the opportunity to meet other UNC Charlotte students who have studied abroad. Together you have a common bond: You each had an international experience that changed your life! Many PAs tend to formulate friendships with each other that last a lifetime. It can be a relief to be a part of group of like-minded individuals who are passionate about International Education.

Beyond other Peer Advisors in your group, you will also have the opportunity to work closely with OEA Staff and meet other UNC Charlotte students while promoting on campus. This is your chance to develop relationships that may be mutually beneficial as you progress through your UNC Charlotte career and beyond!

professional development

This program is designed to give students the opportunity to develop personally and professional throughout the semester. By participating in tabling events, resource fairs, classroom presentations and other on-campus events, students acquire and develop soft skills, such as communication, problem solving, adaptability and more.

PAs who successfully complete the requirements of the program and who are committed & passionate about study abroad may be able to participate in professional development opportunities, such as attending local study abroad conferences, University Career Center events, and more.

Study Abroad Alumni T-Shirt

All PAs will receive an "I Studied Abroad, Ask Me Where" t-shirt from the OEA at the start of the semester! OEA asks that you where this shirt while completing PA monthly requirements because it tends to be a great conversation starter that can lead to other UNC Charlotte students deciding to start the process and new friendships!

Position overview

  • Unpaid
  • Some night & weekend work may be required (this is typically elective as you get to choose which events you sign up for)
  • Required orientation & training first week of class

Required Skills

  • Ability to articulate the impact your study abroad experience had on you
  • High energy & passion for study abroad
  • Motivation to increase the number of UNC Charlotte students sent abroad each year
  • Ability to speak with students you have never met before
  • Goal-oriented
  • Organized
  • Knowledge of study abroad process & OEA policies (will receive further training at start of program, but foundation & basic understanding is necessary)
  • Commitment to participating in the program consistently throughout entire semester

Preferred Skills

  • Creativity
  • Event-planning experience
  • Public speaking skills

While the Peer Advisor program is voluntary, PAs are treated as professional staff and the OEA has high expectations that PAs must meet throughout the duration of the semester. Please see the following to better understand what you can expect with the Peer Advisor program:

orientation & training

Once accepted into the program, you'll attend a mandatory orientation and training where you will be able to meet the other Peer Advisors, learn more about the requirements of the program, and receive training on how to advise on study abroad.

Monthly Meetings & Ongoing Training

Throughout the course of the Peer Advisor program, you'll attend monthly meetings (approximately 1-2 meetings per month), to reflect on past events, plan new events in order to promote study abroad, and receive further training on advising and recruiting.

COMMUNICATION with prospective students

Peer Advisors exchange emails and potentially meet with prospective study abroad students, answering questions pertaining to the country and your experience abroad. Your contact information and picture will be featured on the OEA website. Peer advisors will then be expected to answer questions from students who may reach out to you in a timely manner and encourage perspective students by using the knowledge you gained on your travels. Face to face meet ups can also be a great way to share your passion in a more personal way (but this is completely optional).

Volunteer Requirements

Peer advisors participate in two campus events a month (six total for the semester). These events can include tabling in the student union, attending the International Speaker Series, International Coffee Hours, and pre-approved campus or internationally themed events or presentations around campus. The Office of Education Abroad will also need the support of the Peer Advisors for many of the events the office sponsors including the Study Abroad Fair, EXPLORE (high school students interested in UNC Charlotte), Admitted Students Day, International Education Week events, and more. Students will know who you are by your NinerInterNational t-shirt. Having study abroad alumni in person to answer questions can be a huge help to spread the word about studying abroad and increase awareness about the OEA department.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Peer advisors are expected to be active on social media at least once every two weeks to expand the reach of the department’s online presence. Sharing OEA Facebook posts to your personal feed and participating in internationally themed photo hashtag campaigns on Instagram (or other social media platforms) helps expand the audience to people that may not have considered studying abroad.

Program schedule

Peer Advisors will be active the following months depending on which semester they are PAs:

  • Fall: September, October & November
  • Spring: February, March & April

Expected Time Commitment

This program is designed to give students the opportunity to complete PA requirements that fit around their class, work & personal schedules. Most Peer Advisors spend a total of 5-10 hours per month on the Peer Advisor program. While the OEA is open to being flexible, students must be prepared to be committed to completing the requirements of the program each month.

Applicants must meet the following requirements to be considered for this program:
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing at time of application and throughout program semester
  • Studied abroad while they were an active UNC Charlotte student
  • Studied abroad for a minimum of 4 weeks

Application Deadlines

  • Fall: August 10
  • Spring: January 4

Application Cycles

Peer Advisor applications open according to the following timeline, meaning students can begin an application as follows (subject to change):

  • Fall: Applications open in July
  • Spring: Applications Open in November

New Applicants

If you have never been a Peer Advisor before, please follow the instructions below:

Complete an Application

  • Go to the Study Abroad Peer Advisor Program brochure
    • ​Note: If you have been a PA in the past, please see below
  • Click the "Apply Now" button
  • Choose the term (Fall or Spring) for which you are applying for
  • Log in with your UNC Charlotte NinerNET Account username and password
  • Complete all application components by the deadline

Interview with OEA

Once applications have been submitted, qualified applicants will be contacted by the OEA to set up a brief Skype or in-person interview. Please note that an interview or acceptance into the program is not guaranteed.


Previous Peer Advisors

All students who have participated in the Study Abroad Peer Advisor program in the past and want to reapply as a Senior Peer Advisor should complete the following application steps. Please note that acceptance is not guaranteed:

Complete an Application

  • Go to the Senior Study Abroad Peer Advisor brochure
  • Click the "Apply Now" button
  • Choose the term (Fall or Spring) for which you are applying for
  • Log in with your UNC Charlotte NinerNET Account username and password
  • Complete all application components by the deadline (an interview is not required)

Competitiveness

Please note that the OEA only has a certain number of  Senior PA applicants they are able to accept each semester. Acceptance into the program is not guaranteed. 

Program reviews

At the end of each semester, PAs are asked to complete a program evaluation. The following are direct quotes taken from previous PA program evaluations:

  • "It is a great way to meet other students that have studied abroad and to help prospective students experience the same thing you did!"
  • "A chance to be with like minded individuals while sharing information on your experience abroad. You are partnered with the OEA Office to help other students get the same experience you had."
  • "It is the perfect way to give back, and to advocate for education abroad, something meaningful to do when you're back in the U.S. and missing life abroad. "


Click Here to Meet Our Current Peer Advisors!