Major: Computer Science
Hometown: Bangalore, India
Why did you decide to attend college in the United States? And why did you choose UNI?
I always wanted to study in the United States because the education system here is more flexible and offers a wide range of courses in the Liberal Arts Core that I cannot get in India. I chose to come to UNI because it was the right University for me. The campus size was not too big that I would get lost in a sea of students and at the same time, it was not too small that I would not get a state university experience. The campus is beautiful and the people are friendly and welcoming.
What do you like the most about UNI?
I like the people at UNI. The students and faculty are very friendly and welcoming.
Do you participate in any on-campus organizations or activities?
I am involved with the honors program. I get to take classes in the honors section which are very fun and challenging since our learning goes beyond the text-book. I am also involved in International Student Organization (ISA), where we try to promote awareness about the diversity on campus, International student Promoters (ISP), where we contact prospective international students and give them a student’s perspective of what life at UNI will be and answer any questions they have about college, Northern Iowan Student Government (NISG), where I am the Director of international affairs, and Student Admissions Ambassadors (SAA), an organization that helps out with the admissions process by giving campus tours to prospective students and we also do a lot of community service. I enjoy all the opportunities and I get to meet a lot of great people through these organizations.
Do you work on campus?
I did not work my first year in college because I wanted time to get used to the college life. But starting this year, I will be working at the department of residence as a ResNet Computer Consultant (RCC).
What is your favorite spot on campus?
My favorite spot on campus is definitely Maucker Union. I go there whenever I want to hang out with friends or have a class meeting for a group project. I also go there when I want to study in a not-so-quiet place like the library. I love it because you can do your homework, catch up with friends and get some really good smoothies, and great food. It’s the best place to be at!!
What have you done to help make UNI your home away from home?
I am a very social person, so I made a lot of friends when I moved in to the residence halls and they made me feel at home. Getting involved in student organizations was another way I met a lot of people from different communities and we all hang out and spend a lot of time together that I don’t feel homesick at all. I also have a host family, and they are amazing and caring people and have made feel more at home than anyone else. I can visit them as often as I want and they are always ready to help me with anything.
What is the one thing you would tell a new or prospective international student about attending a college in the United States?
I would tell every student to make the most of their college experience. I have loved every minute of my experience in this country. Coming here has made me become more independent and also made me confident. You will gain so much more than just classroom knowledge.
How has your academic experience been?
I have enjoyed all my classes here. The faculty is very approachable and friendly. The Liberal Arts Core (LAC) classes, which cover a range of subjects, make you a better individual in society and prepare you for the real world.
How did you determine your major… i.e. did you take a class, consult with UNI programs, inspired by someone or something?
I had taken computer classes for 2 years back in India and I knew that, that was going to be my major. I guess my initial inspiration was my brother, who used to show me all the fun things that could be done with a computer and that got me interested to study and learn more about the subject.
Tell us about any great classes or professors that have helped, inspired or challenged you with determining your career path.
I think I have learnt and have taken something out of all my classes, but a class and a professor that I will remember most is my humanities class with Dr. Lees. I took his class in my first semester, and I was a little shy since I was in a new place, but he encouraged me throughout the semester and pushed me to speak more in class and made sure that I participated in all the discussions. It helped me a lot since I was not used to an active classroom atmosphere and it also helped me get over my initial culture shock.
Complete this sentence: At UNI, I am…
living my dream!!