Hi, I’m Luise from Germany! I signed up to be an international student ambassador in my first year at the University of York. I have since answered students’ queries online and in person multiple times. For me, it is the perfect job alongside my studies and I would highly recommend it. Here’s why:
Flexible working hours
Having flexible working hours makes student life and work for essays and exams so much easier. You’ll receive an email when there’s an open visit day and it’s up to you to respond if you’re interested. This way, you can build your working times around your studies and decide yourself how much free time you have.
Money, money, money
We all want it, we all need it. Money is undoubtedly the main reason anyone applies to do any additional work. So, let’s be real. The university offers a decent, but standard university pay which is currently £9.77 (can be slightly more during the holidays). In addition most in person department tours end with a chat and refreshments. It’s always nice to have a little snacky bonus to finish your workday with. Although, don’t take this as a guarantee though, every student ambassador day is slightly different!
Improve someone’s day and remind yourself how far you’ve come
Being any kind of student ambassador is a great way to lighten the day for those nervous to start university. Whether you visited York before starting here or not, guiding people around the university is easier than you might think. Our lovely, yet surprisingly large, campuses often take time to get used to. When showing people around, you’re also showing and reminding yourself how far you have come since you started at York. You’re no longer lost on campus, overwhelmed by being in a different country or worried about not fitting in. Instead you’re settled in, know your way around and are able to answer a bunch of questions. So, take a breath and realise how far you have made it already.
While you might not be able to answer the questions about A-Levels, other pre-university questions are fairly similar. I’m often asked: What is university really like? What societies are available? What is on-campus life like? These are all common and simple to answer questions you will be asked. Since every person who comes to visit is slightly different, your job as an international student ambassador will give you a lot of variety, making it more of a fun day outdoors than a mundane day in the office.
Share your favourite parts about York
If nothing else, being a student ambassador gives you the opportunity to share your favourite parts about life in York. It provides a chance to talk about our famous LongBoi (@longboiyork) and his companions; enjoy a walk around the lake, and relax by chatting to people about the University of York and your course. Particularly parents, but also other students, are usually impressed when you mention you are an international student. Be proud of yourself! By being an international student, you also have a special view of what York and Yorkshire can offer students. Your view on the teaching, particularly if English is not your first language, will be even more important and caretakers and prospective students really value your input.
Being an international student ambassador is not only a great experience for prospective students, but also for yourself. It is most definitely one of the best, most fun and relaxed jobs I’ve had so far in the UK.
So, just like it says on the walk from the Morell library to Vanbrugh College, you are there to “inspire, create, discover, learn, and love York”. You are: inspiring people to go there; creating a welcoming environment; letting people discover your favourite parts; learning about different cultures, and most importantly, showing your love for York!
For me, being an international student ambassador is a fantastic opportunity and this might just be the right job for you too!
Find out how you can be an international student ambassador.