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FLTA Best Practices


Orienting Your FLTA

Many FLTAs participate in a pre-departure orientation and all participate in a summer orientation. It is also a good idea to orient your FLTA to living and working on campus.

  1. Register your FLTA to participate in your institution’s international student orientation. You should exempt your FLTA from sessions that are not relevant to them, such as F-1 student visa regulations, Optional Practical Training, employment, etc.

  2. Register your FLTA to participate in your institution’s graduate student orientation. If this is not possible, discuss your class attendance policy with your FLTA. For example, is it okay for the FLTA to miss class with your permission to attend conferences or workshops?

  3. Register your FLTA to participate in your institution’s new faculty orientation. If this is not possible, share your department’s culture and policies regarding grading, extra credit, practices such as “dropping the lowest test score,” etc.

Getting Involved in the Community

The mission of the Fulbright Program is to promote mutual understanding between the people of the US and the people of other nations. As teaching and studying responsibilities increase, FLTAs tend to neglect their role as a cultural ambassador. Encourage your FLTA to get involved in the community.

  1. Encourage your FLTA to join campus clubs and organizations. This will connect them with US students with shared hobbies and interests.

  2. Encourage your FLTA to volunteer in the community. The website hosts a user-friendly database of opportunities to volunteer around the country. Volunteering allows FLTAs to meet members of their community beyond campus.

  3. Connect your FLTA with a host family. Having a host family is a wonderful way for your FLTA to build deeper connections in your community. Host families often greet FLTAs at the airport, provide temporary housing if needed, and invite FLTAs for celebratory meals and holidays. This mutually-beneficial arrangement often leads to lifelong friendships.

  4. Work with your FLTA to find opportunities to speak at local schools. The FLTA may be the only person from their country or region that many Americans will ever meet. Speaking at a school is a unique opportunity to help shape a child’s view of the world and of people of the FLTA’s region. Many hosts establish relationships with local schools and schedule regular monthly or bi-monthly visits.

  5. Assign your FLTA responsibilities for international week. For example, ask them to set up a booth representing their country, participate in a talent show, cook traditional dishes to share, put on a cooking demonstration, etc.

  6. Assign your FLTA to host a language table, movie night, or other activity to share their language and culture in a fun, casual setting.