NCDA International Student Services Committee (ISSC) Research Team

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Project log

Elif Balin
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The initial research findings and implications are presented at the NCDA Conference on June 5, 2020:
Webinar Goals
  • Understand the social-political and economic context that require more integration of social justice in higher education services
  • Reflect on the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies and advocacy strategies for career counseling with international students
  • Learn about the results and implications of the NCDA-ISSC research project that explored cultural competencies in career services
  • Reflect on the implications of our research in relation to your work with international students and other marginalized or underserved college students
  • Increase awareness and knowledge about best practices for multicultural and social justice counseling and advocacy strategies to support international students at individual, small-group, and systemic level work contexts
Elif Balin
added a research item
During the 2018-2019 academic year, there were over a million international students enrolled in colleges and universities in the United States (Institute for International Education, 2019). Student affairs professionals acknowledge the imperative to provide exemplary support services, including career services, to international students, many of whom plan to pursue a job in the U.S. after graduation (Balin et al., 2016). Tragically, the last few years were marked by a particularly divisive social-political climate in the U.S. that saw a rise in anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim groups (Beirich & Buchanan, 2017). International students on college campuses across the U.S. were among those negatively affected— academically, professionally, and psychologically—by a travel ban imposed on individuals from several Muslim countries. Thus, it is not surprising that the new enrollment numbers have gradually declined since 2016, and international students and scholars reported feeling less safe and welcome in the U.S. (NAFSA, 2019). The incongruously complex environment that currently exists for international students in the U.S. necessitates that we rethink the ways that we are committed to these students on our campuses. Career practitioners have long been guided by standards and competencies established by the National Career Development Association (NCDA), a division of the American Counseling Association (ACA). In 2009, NCDA added the Minimum Competencies for Multicultural Career Counseling and Development to its existing Career Counseling Competencies based on the Multicultural Counseling Competencies (MCC; Sue, Arredondo & McDavis, 1992). Revisions to the MCCs made in 2015 culminated in a new framework, the Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling Competencies (MSJCC) (Ratts, Singh, Nassar-McMillan, Butler, & McCullough, 2016). This chapter highlights how the MSJCC framework can facilitate the development of multicultural and social justice counseling competencies of career practitioners who work with international students. It provides implications for both individual and systemic (e.g., campus-wide) practices by taking into consideration the influence of the current social-political climate.
Elif Balin
added 2 research items
The career development process is one of the most important aspects of the international student experience. Providing comprehensive and culturally competent services requires institutional efforts that utilize best practices developmentally throughout the college experience and beyond. This article is based on the work of the International Student Services Committee of the National Career Development Association, especially the surveys conducted with international students, career development professional and employers. The authors focus on three major themes from the surveys: knowledge about work authorization options, impact of cultural differences on job search, and specialized career services for international students. Discussing these major themes, the authors report on best practices and future implications for supporting international student career development in the U.S. and beyond.