The GAP coordinators will be available throughout the year to help mediate any potential conflicts or disagreements. We hope that you and your ambassador pair will have a wonderful year, but it will be possible to change your ambassador.
We hope to pair upperclassmen with first-years, because our fundamental goal is to connect people from different backgrounds, and this includes age and class year! However, we at GAP hope that you will learn as much from your ambassador pair as they will from you - the premise of your pair is an equal rather than mentor-mentee relationship.
This is not exclusively a language exchange program. However you can state that you would like to be partnered with someone who speaks the language on your application and you are free to practice a foreign language with your paired ambassador! GAP offers not only language exchange opportunities but also cultural exchange opportunities.
Ambassadors are expected to participate in the GAP kick-off event and complete the Intercultural Effectiveness Scale (takes 10-15 minutes). After that, one mandatory group meeting every month. These meetings will typically last for about an hour, and food will be served. In regards to meetings with your ambassador pair, the time commitment can vary and is really dependent on you and your ambassador pair. Ambassador pairs can meet over lunch or plan an excursion in the city.
The Global Ambassador Program (GAP) is a new international friendship program that aims to foster intercultural dialogues among Columbia's diverse student body, as well as connect students from different social identities, cultural backgrounds, and class years. It provides a safe(r) space for discussing topics such as culture shock, communication styles, intercultural conflict styles, social perceptions, and social (dis)comfort. GAP hosts monthly themed intercultural events. Ambassador pairs will also meet up informally to engage in intercultural activities and discussions.