Community Volunteers Needed

By Barb Lang

New international students will be attending the University of Wisconsin-Barron County this fall and the campus is seeking people/households who would like to volunteer some of their time acting as a “Community Connection” to these students. 


Mary Hankins and Lee Friederich are acting as co-coordinators of UW-BC’s international program.  They noted that the campus expects to enroll 5-8 new international students from China and there is a need to help them get acquainted with the Rice Lake community and surrounding area along with our lifestyle. 

In explanation of the role of the people who volunteer to be a community connection, Hankins noted “All of the international students attending UW-Barron County are being directed to Glenwood Commons for their housing, but we would like each international student to have an American family or household in the community that they can befriend, connect with, and occasionally visit.  Lee and I are asking for this to be a once-a-month (minimum) contact with an assigned international student in which you get to know them, meet them for coffee or lunch, and invite them to your home for a family dinner or holiday celebration.


Friederich further explained that “becoming a Community Connection is an excellent way for area residents and families to learn about Chinese culture and its people.  The incoming students are excited to be coming to a small university for the first two years of their education, and that includes learning about the life in its community.”   

If interested, please email Friederich or Mary Hankins at or or for further information about the Community Connections program.



Lee Friederich