Every so often a GroupMe message appears on Limeng (Shirley) Liu’s phone.
The message invariably reads something like “We want to taste this specific Chinese dish, but I don’t know how to order that. Can we do another reunion this week?”
For Liu, this message reminds her of the first memories she made at Indiana University. Thanks to the IU2U program, before she was even a freshman, Liu got to learn about what life is like in Bloomington and the culture at the university. Liu is an international student from Nanjing, China who is majoring in informatics with a concentration in computer science and has two minors in business and statistics in the Kelly School of Business.
“When I was an incoming student, I just participated in the IU2U program,” Liu said. “At that time, I was new to IU, new to IU2U too.”
Liu’s first experience learning anything about Indiana University was attending the IU2U events abroad.
IU2U is a pre-arrival international orientation program designed to help new undergraduate students and their parents learn more about life at IU by engaging with faculty, staff, and current students in a fun and interactive environment. The program offers various workshops during the days of visit to help students and parents with any concerns they might have.
“If you are an incoming student, there should be an email with a link,” Liu said, when asked about how she first got involved. “Right now, the Office of International Services created a social media site, where you can also sign up through there.”
Thanks to her positive experience with the informational workshops abroad, Liu learned more about the IU2U program and applied.
For international students like Liu, visiting the IU2U website provides the information and steps needed to sign up for the workshops to learn more about the program. Angela Gast, director of the IU2U program in the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education (OVPUE) was Liu’s first contact in learning more about the program.
Liu’s relationship with the IU2U program started before her freshman year when she was a participant and shifted over the next three years as she became student leader, translator, and guest speaker.
“I feel like being part of the IU2U program is a treasure for me, I get a lot, a lot, of happy memories, especially with other student leaders,” Liu said.