Center for Research on Abroad and International Student Engagement


To understand and enhance the experiences, engagement, and development of abroad and international students

Driving Questions

  • How can students maximize growth and engagement through the abroad experience?
  • How can universities support international students’ engagement and development?
  • How can global competency increase engagement across cultures and backgrounds?


Photo: Funke and Nelson on Zoom

Collaboration through IREX

In May 2021, Dr. Funke Olumakaiye, Professor of Public Health Nutrition, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria, and Dr. Nelson Brunsting, RAISE Center Director and Research Associate Professor of International Studies, discussed collaborative approaches to developing respectful partnerships for intervention research in cross-cultural settings. The RAISE Center supported Pam Moser, Associate Director for Human Research Protection, in virtually hosting Dr. Olumakaiye through the IREX University Administration Support Program.

Photo: Nelson Qiaona Jon

RAISE Center Receives External Funding

Nelson Brunsting, Director, RAISE Center, WFU (PI), Qiaona Yu, Assistant Professor of East Asian Languages and Cultures, WFU, and Jon Smart, Assistant Teaching Professor of Writing, WFU, were awarded an International English Language Testing Service Joint-Funded Research Grant for their project, Investigating Linkages between International Students’ English Language Proficiency, Social-Contextual Outcomes, and Well-Being in U.S. Universities. The AU$70,000 award supports the longitudinal project January, 2021 through June, 2022.

Active Projects

Recent Publications

Kiang, L., Brunsting, N. C., Zachry, C., He, Y., Takeuchi, R., & Tevis, T. (in press). Identity fusion of international students with different social groups and well-being outcomes: A longitudinal study. Journal of Studies in International Education. doi: 10.1177/1028315320932320

Brunsting, N. C., Zachry, C. E., Liu, J., Bryant, R., Fang, X., Wu, S., & Luo, X., (2021). Sources of perceived social support, social-emotional experiences, and psychological well-being of international students. Journal of Experimental Education, 89 95-111. doi: 10.1080/00220973.2019.1639598

Luo, Z., Wu, S., Fang, X., & Brunsting, N. C. (2019). International students’ perceived language competence, domestic student support, and well-being at a U.S. university. Journal of International Students, 19, 954-971. doi: 10.32674/jis.v0i0.605