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ISAB: International Student Advisory Board

The purpose of ISAB is to provide feedback concerning International Student and Scholar Services programs, outreach, website, services and general effectiveness. Student board members will be introduced to ISSS programs, website, international student services, orientation and other areas. Board members will give feedback and recommendations regarding programs, services, web site information and navigation, and orientation to assist ISSS to provide excellent programs and services. Board members will also give feedback to other Penn units upon request.


ISAB is composed of undergraduate and graduate international students, international student appointees of the Director of the ISSS and a staff member of the International Student and Scholar Services. Additional individuals from the University may attend as invited guests.


How to Apply

If you are committed to furthering campus internationalization at the University of Pennsylvania and would like to serve on ISAB, we invite all international students (undergraduate and graduate students) to apply for board membership. Applications are being accepted immediately during early Fall semester of every year and will be reviewed as they are received. We will be conducting interviews as we receive applications before the posted deadline. Participants will be selected from a pool of incoming undergraduate and graduate student applicants. A limited number of applicants are selected as board members. All participants will be awarded a certificate during a spring dinner at the end of the academic year.

Regular attendance and participation is required so please make sure that you can commit the time before submitting your application.


Terms of Board Service

One academic year is the term. Members may return for the succeeding years. Regular participation in the board's activities is essential and expected in order to be effective. Agendas and minutes will be posted on the ISSS web site for all to view, including any presentations or proposals presented to the group. ISAB will decide whether or not to convene at least one open forum per year to discuss international community issues or to seek other venues for community input.


Highlights of Participation

Members of the International Student Advisory Board attend meetings during the Fall and Spring semesters; share their questions, concerns and ideas with Penn administrators (International Partners Outreach Group) twice a year; and then communicate with their fellow students about the Board's role at Penn by allowing University officials to engage in dialogue with students about their experiences on campus and about their ideas for improving our campus atmosphere for international students. This dialogue is valuable to our ongoing efforts to create a climate on campus conducive to international educational exchange.


The Board meets three times per semester with subcommittee work involvement.  The regular meetings are Thursdays, 5:00 - 6:30 PM. Meals are provided. Board members will also be required to communicate regularly with other international students and Penn administrators in between meetings. Presentations to Penn administrators will also be conducted by ISAB members.


Leadership Experience

ISAB members are elected by the membership for leadership positions. Every Spring semester, members vote for ISAB co-chairs (one undergraduate chair and one graduate chair). Also, the ISSS director and the co-chairs also appoint subcommittee chairs.    Leaders of nationality clubs and groups are encouraged to recruit a member of their student association in order to create a broad representation and communication amongst the various national communities on campus.  Undergraduate Assembly, GAPSA and Assembly of International Students are also represented on ISAB.

  • Participants' View
  • Participants' View
  • "ISAB...offers students an effective avenue to express their concerns directly to the key administrators of the university..."

    Read more

ISAB Contact

  • Rudie R. Altamirano – ISAB Founder and Coordinator
    International Student and Scholar Services
  • Academic Resource Guide for International Students
  • Through the concerted and collaborative efforts of both IPOG and ISAB subcommittee members on academic performance and integration, the online resource guide is now available for use for new and current international students. It is our hope that this will provide a tremendous benefit to the international population.

    Click here to navigate to the Resource Guide

The application to join ISAB will be available in September.