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Seaver College Launches World Waves Program for First-Year International Students

November 3, 2021  | 1 min read

Group photo of World Waves participantsAt the start of the 2021–2022 academic year, the Seaver Dean's Office and the Student Success Center (SSC), in partnership with the Office of International Student Services (OISS) and supported by a steering committee composed of faculty members, launched the inaugural World Waves Program. The World Waves Program brings together a group of first-year international students selected from applications for a weekly one-unit course and activities throughout the semester that promote intercultural exchange and success at Pepperdine. 

Students in the program take HUM 295, “Enriching the International Experience,” the same course that many domestic students take when studying abroad through International Programs. In addition to the weekly class, taught this year by professor Brian Newman, the students receive peer-mentoring from Student Partners, participate in local excursions, attend tailored academic success workshops facilitated by the SSC, and dine in the homes of Pepperdine faculty and staff members. The program is modeled on a previous program piloted by professor Michael Gose in 2018–2020.

“We want the students to have an immersive experience into Malibu and Southern California culture,” Marissa Davis, director of the SSC, shares. “Our goal is to build a cohort of students who are there to support each other continually through their time at Pepperdine and for them to have the resources and support they need to persist, graduate on time, and achieve their goals.”

The students also attended a fall retreat, which took place on October 13, to have another opportunity to build relationships with one another outside of class time. At the 2021 retreat, students heard from Anthony Ahn, associate professor of advertising, who shared his story of coming to America as an international student. The students also engaged in discussion and relationship-building activities. 

For more information, visit the World Waves Program webpage.