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International Community and Programs

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International Students

What We Do

The International Programming team offers many events and cultural activities to support OU’s international student population as well as facilitate cross-cultural exchange on campus. From coordinating new student orientation, offering helpful workshops, providing excursions to experience Oklahoma, educating the Norman community about global cultures, to facilitating the Friends to International Students friendship program, we are dedicated to providing international students rewarding and substantive programming while they attend OU.

Who We Are

Mary Beth Polk

Mary Beth Polk

Mary Beth coordinates multiple international student programs, including Crimson Connection orientation, NISO Peer Mentors, Friends to International Students friendship family program, various events and workshops, and serves as the advisor for the International Advisory Committee (IAC). Mary Beth earned her Bachelor’s degree in Asian Studies from the University of Oklahoma in 2009 and studied abroad in Beijing at Minzu University of China. Upon graduation, she moved to Chongqing, China where she taught English to university students for four years, focusing on intercultural communication. As both an exchange student and expat, Mary Beth understands what it’s like to live and study in another country, and enjoys helping students navigate life at OU. Learning from students from all over the world and helping them build the international community on campus are the best parts of her job.

Courtney Crowder

Courtney Crowder

Courtney is from a small town in Ohio. Family trips at an early age sparked her interest in travel and learning about other cultures. With her passion for travel she has always known she wanted to join the Peace Corps. She was given the opportunity to be a Youth Development Peace Corps Volunteer in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, West Indies. During her time there she fell in love with the people and the land and has since called St. Vincent and the Grenadines her second home.

Courtney completed her undergraduate degree at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, attaining a Bachelor of Social Work and a Bachelor of Arts in Religion. She continued her education by earning her Master of Social Work at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a certificate in Veterinary Social Work. In her free time, she likes to read, play with her fur baby and try new foods.  She is excited to be at OU and work with the OU international community!