Davidson College in North Carolina has announced a gift of $8.4 million from trustee Carlos Alvarez to bolster and expand its support for international students on campus.
The gift from Alvarez, a San Antonio-based entrepreneur, will create the Alvarez Access Program and ensure that all international students at the college have the dedicated resources and staff support they need to explore the curricular, career-guiding, and perspective-widening opportunities offered by the private liberal arts school. The gift also includes funding for an Alvarez Director of International Student Services position and additional staff who can help students with requirements such as visas and work permits; a new position in the Center for Career Development; career experiences or programs that complement academic coursework for international students with financial need; and training for pre-major advisers who will assist international students with academics, physical and emotional health issues, and activities and programs that complement the classroom experience.
Alvarez, who emigrated to the U.S. with his family from Mexico, established the college's Alvarez Scholarship program for international students in 2010. Since then, the school's international student enrollment has doubled from 4 percent to 8 percent.
"The staff and resources supported by the new gift will help students seize and weave together those experiences, to stand out as candidates for a dream job or grad school," said Alvarez. "It just takes a little more creativity and a little more work than the typical domestic student."