International Student Mentor Program

The International Student Mentor Program (ISMP) 



The aim of the International Student Mentor Program (ISMP) is to enhance the international student experience at Portland State University through personal interaction in an atmosphere of mutual respect.

Each term, peer mentors assist new international students in the transition from their respective countries to our university by connecting with students before they arrive, leading small groups at International Student Orientation, and serving as a cultural bridge and a resource to new students during their first term in the United States.  Transitioning from one country to another is often a complicated and frustrating process. 

This program is designed to smooth that process and to support new international students during their first term at Portland State University.  





Below is a video highlighting the experiences of some of our International Student Mentors and their Mentees.


Photo: The 2015-2016 International Student Mentor Team at the Oregon Coast. Photo credit: Dat Huynh


Become a Mentor

The International Student Mentors serve as a:

  • support to new international students
  • resource to explain and introduce new students to PSU services
  • cultural bridge to ease international students into American culture and life in Portland  


2019 Information Tables and Sessions

We will have information tables and session in Spring 2020.
Please check back soon for specific dates!


The ISMP application form is now closed.
Applications will re-open in March 2020 for the 2020-21 academic year. 


View the Position Description


Apply to the ISMP Program


We seek mentors from all academic levels and departments, all countries, and all knowledge levels to join our diverse group of mentors each year. The team includes about 40 student mentors and mentor leaders.


Students must have completed 6 months at PSU by the time they apply. They must be currently enrolled and making satisfactory academic progress. They must have some cross-cultural experience. They must commit to the training, retreat, orientation, and corresponding event dates listed in the job description. 


All mentors are required to attend mandatory trainings in July and September, including a two night trip to the Oregon coast. Trainings cover PSU resources, intercultural issues, orientation processes, and more. Refer to the dates listed in the job description for specific information about trainings.  


Being an international student mentor is a valuable leadership opportunity, not a regular wage job. Mentors receive a leadership award, Intercultural Leadership Certificate, and references for future global leadership positions.