Date of Defense


Date of Graduation




First Advisor

Pamela Wadsworth

Second Advisor

Maria Roche-Dean


The United States has been considered one of the top destinations for youths looking for a high-quality education and job opportunities after graduation. About 1.1 million international students worldwide were enrolled in universities during the 2019-2020 school year (Migration Policy Institute, 2021). Among thousands of other universities in the United States, Western Michigan University (WMU), located in Kalamazoo, Michigan, is home to more than 1,800 international students from over 100 countries (Western Michigan University, 2022).

Western Michigan University takes pride in presenting its diverse community of people from all over the world. The university organizes various cultural programs to showcase the uniqueness of these diverse communities. However, being an international student can be emotionally and mentally very challenging. WMU has provided various resources to address students' mental health issues. These resources include programs such as "YOU at Western," Well Track, Sindecuse Health Center, Health Promotion and Education, Student Recreation Center, etc. (WSAWMU, 2022). However, the study of data regarding utilizing these resources, especially by the international students at WMU, is minimal. Therefore, the main concern for this thesis is whether the university provides enough resources and support to overcome mental health challenges among international students. If yes, how are these students using these resources to improve their mental well-being? If not, what do international students expect from the university to support them in becoming more successful?

The international students enrolled at the undergraduate or graduate level were recruited by obtaining informed consent. The thesis presented is a photo voice study where the participants were asked to take pictures and write descriptions regarding their experience with mental health at WMU.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Restricted