The Global Brown Center for International Students (GBC), formerly known as International Student Experience (ISE) Center, was established in May 2017 within the Division of Campus Life in order to develop programming to support and engage our undergraduate and graduate international community.
The mission of the Global Brown Center (GBC) for International Students is to serve and support the international student community at Brown. GBC provides orientations, programming, and resources through which students can embrace and celebrate their international identities, while also recognizing and appreciating the diversity of their experiences.
Our center aims to foster an inclusive community and create a home away from home. Also, by raising awareness of Brown’s diverse student body, educating students on self-advocacy, and encouraging intercultural dialogue, we seek to promote an increasingly equitable campus community. GBC advances the university’s mission by empowering and enabling international students to thrive in all aspects of their lives at Brown.
Meet Our Team
As the Director for the Global Brown Center for International Students, Andrew works to enhance and uplift the experience of international undergraduate and graduate students through intersectional and intentional practice that centers advocacy and the international student voice. With the help of a dedicated professional and student staff, Andrew organizes international student orientations, advises student organizations, and builds intentional community spaces here at Brown University. Andrew holds a Master's in Education Policy, Organization and Leadership with a concentration in Global Studies in Education and a postgraduate diploma in Refugee Protection and Forced Migration Studies from the University of London.
Assistant Director, Global Brown Center for International Students
Yanjie (Ruby) Cheng is the inaugural Assistant Director of the Global Brown Center for International Students (GBC). In this role, she develops, implements, and assesses intersectional programming that fosters a strong sense of belonging for Brown's internationally identified community. Ruby also leads Brown's international orientation, oversees the International Mentoring Program (IMP), and supports the GBC director in advancing the university's mission of creating an inclusive community that promotes equity and empowers international students to thrive in all aspects of their lives at Brown.
Ruby holds a doctorate degree in Leadership for Educational Equity from the University of Colorado Denver and brings over ten years of professional experience as a dedicated advocate for international students. Prior to joining Brown, she served as the Director of International Enrollment at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs. Ruby has presented at international conferences such as the EducationUSA Forum, NAFSA, International Association of College Admissions and Counseling (International ACAC), ChinaICAC, and Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA). Her research focuses on international students' acculturation and sense of belonging, and her advocacy articles have been published in professional and scholarly journals.
Program Coordinator, Global Brown Center for International Students
As the Program Coordinator of the Global Brown Center, Syrina focuses on supporting student leadership and the student experience in the Global Brown Center for International Students. Syrina’s portfolio includes overseeing our community and cultural programs, such as our Gather at the Globe series, off campus trips, and large scale programs such as the International Festival. She also oversees our student organization affiliation process and provides advising and support to affiliated student organizations. Syrina is also responsible for the Global Brown Center’s student facing marketing and communications - leading our social media strategy and newsletter content. She works closely with Dr. Ruby Cheng, the GBC’s Assistant Director, on providing administrative support to the International Mentoring Program and graduate student initiatives. As Program Coordinator, Syrina also cultivates new and existing collaborative partnerships with colleagues in fellow identity centers, the Division of Campus Life, the greater University, and the Providence community.
Syrina joined us from Brown University’s pre-college program, where she previously served as the Student Life Manager (as well has several other positions in the summers of 2019, 2021, and 2022). During her time with Brown University’s Pre-College program (a program with a high percentage of international student participants), Syrina provided supervision and guidance to student staff at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, supported the residential experience of more than 700 students, implemented ongoing programs, and supported underrepresented students in creating and sustaining affinity groups. She also served as a Residence Director at Northeastern University, where she further developed her skills in providing support for student staff, providing navigational advising, and building programs that are responsive to student needs. As a student in her graduate studies, Syrina served as a graduate peer mentor and provided support to underrepresented graduate students.