With her graduation from RIT right around the corner, fourth-year marketing student and Global Union marketing director Paola Gonzalez has had time to gain perspective about her contributions to the university and its community.
“International students are important because it shows people what the rest of the world is like,” said Gonzalez. “It shows you there’s more you can explore.”
The Dominican Republic native chose to come to RIT because she wanted to experience something different, and according to Gonzalez, RIT was exactly what she was hoping it would be. But she could have done without the winters.
“My first two winters weren’t too bad, but last year—I get cold just thinking about it.”
After graduating, Gonzalez hopes to stay in America and work for at least a few years to gain more experience.
Jassim Dalwai is no stranger to international travel.
The graduate student was born in India and raised in Kuwait, often traveling between the two countries. Because the United States is viewed as a pioneer and leader in the fields of engineering and technology, Dalwai always planned on earning his master’s degree in this country. But for Dalwai, the strength of the telecommunication program at RIT was only half of the appeal.
“What’s most important to me is getting to interact with all kinds of other people,” said Dalwai.
This passion for connecting and learning about others eventually led Dalwai to take the position of historian for Global Union, where he gets to meet people from different cultures and countries on a regular basis.
“It’s taken almost three years for me to get here. It’s been a long journey and I’m very happy to come to RIT and finally succeed.”
Originally enrolled in the industrial design program, Yuwei Qiao quickly found herself becoming interested in one of RIT’s more unique majors: packaging science.
Qiao ended up switching into the major because she enjoyed the program’s blend of math, science and design. She chose to come to RIT after learning about the school from recruiters that visited the international prep school she attended in China.
After getting over the initial culture shock, Qiao came to appreciate the kindness of Western New Yorkers.
“I like the people here. People here are more polite, even to strangers. When I first came here, I was kind of amazed by how people held the door for each other,” said Qiao.
The second-year student is still getting accustomed to some aspects of American culture however.
“Americans love sarcasm, which can be a little confusing sometimes. We have a sarcastic way to talk in China as well, but it’s quite different here.”