Category Archives: International Students

Stories from international students at Millersville University.

Giacomo – Italy

I remember my first six months living in the USA—I spoke not a single word of English outside the globally known, “How are you?” and other such phrases. It didn’t hit me up until last year on just how far I have come from the 4th grader who spoke no English. I have a 3.7 GPA in my first two years in college; I’m a dean’s list student; I’m enrolled in COURAGE, a club which sole purpose is to bring community members to become more civically engaged, and I also speak fluent English with not a single trace of an accent (Except for words which contain “th,”)—I know for a fact I wouldn’t be at this point without the help of those who helped me adapt. In the transition period, when I spoke no English, I remember the many helping hands who were willing to sacrifice their time in order to make me feel a part of the holistic group. Other students, teachers, community members, and others all made the transition from Italy to the USA as seamless as the transition could possibly be. Due to this, I have a feeling of being indebted; it is only just that I help those just as I was helped, especially since I’m in a position of being able to connect with individuals going through this adaptation phase, as I went through the identical experience.

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In a position where I’m now able to help, I’ve done so many times. I was a mentor to an Italian foreign exchange student throughout her year of living in the United States—I also taught Italian in all of my four years of being in high school after school through a world language program that my school district offered to all of its intermediate students.

I became interested in international initiatives due to fact on just how influential they were to me whenever I first arrived to the United States. Without international initiatives, I don’t feel as I would be where I am today. Many of these initiatives helped me integrate myself into a foreign land—these initiatives would not be possible if awesome people weren’t behind them. I felt like becoming one of these awesome people, and have done so in many times by taking apart of these initiatives.

I took part in an after-school program which specialized in teaching 4th, 5th, 6th graders about a designated foreign language, along with the culture which is tagged along with it. Coming from Italy, I took it upon myself to introduce Italian to the program, and that I did for my entire time in high school. I also helped a foreign exchange student throughout her entire year spent in America, an experience which made me grow a ton in maturity and responsibility, having to care for someone in that fashion certainly has that affect. For the future, I hope to become involved with the multitude of projects that Global Ambassadors offers, especially the more personal ones they offer with foreign students—I feel those are the most critical for a successful campaign abroad for a foreign exchange student.

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One thing I learned from participating in these programs is just how passionate I, and many others, are about the international community. I never thought that 4th, 5th, and 6th graders would continuously bug me after class was over in order to learn more about the culture and the language. If children can grow a passion and an appreciation for the vast culture and language which world is home to, anyone can. It’s really intriguing how something foreign can form a level of interest in people, something which I have learned from these programs.

Millersville students should get involved with Global Education as it a gateway to anyone who is interested in anything international, be connected to international activities and programs. Knowing about other cultures from around the world only causes one to be more receptive to the diversity which the world houses, along with helping one grow a deeper understanding of others and why they express themselves in a certain manner.

GASSER – EGYPT

My hometown is located in Alexandria, Egypt.

In 2010, I came to the US as an 8th grader and have been here ever since. I have resided in Harrisburg, PA all these years and when it came time for college, I chose to attend Millersville University because it is accredited in my majors (Marketing and International Business) and it also offered the minor that I was looking for (Computer Science). Millersville is also only 45 minutes away from my home in Harrisburg, which made it convenient to move back and forth without having to spend so many hours on the road. Millersville is also very affordable when compared to other universities, yet it offers the same challenging courses as those universities for a much cheaper price tag. Finally, Millersville has a great culture that promotes positive interactions with the local community and raises awareness about international events, diseases, social causes, and so much more, which made me even more excited to attend Millersville.

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In Millersville, I have attended the Barnstormers baseball game at the beginning of the Fall 2017 semester with other international students and it was a great opportunity to meet new people. The highlight of my time here in Millersville so far is definitely the Multicultural Showcase. In the showcase, I was manning the stand for Egypt, where I educated other people on my country, its famous foods, culture, language, and other information that makes Egypt such a unique country. It was a wonderful experience showing people the rich history of my country and having them engaged in the conversation and clearing any misconception that they had about it. I also learned about different cultures there such as Jamaica, Australia, and France among others. The highlight of the showcase, however, were the dancers and musicians that were on the stage during that time. It was delightful seeing different cultures through their music and dancing and I really had a great time in the showcase.

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I came to the US to achieve personal, academic, and professional goals. My personal goals were that I wanted to experience a different country that I have admired ever since I was a child and become more open minded as I, someone from a different country, interact with people here in the US and understand their customs and traditions. My academic goals are that I want to excel in school, obtain my degree with honors, and learn valuable information that I will be able to use for the rest of my life. My professional goals are to work for a global Fortune 500 company in a corporate culture to contribute my international skills and provide a new perspective into the organization. I am working towards these goals everyday by enhancing and diversifying my skill set to make myself a more appealing job candidate and set myself apart from the competition.

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One cultural thing that I learned in the US is how many national holidays are celebrated here! It’s great to see so many occasions where people get together, celebrate, and enjoy their time together with friends and family.

My one thing that I would to share with the campus community is, although I was tempted to, I did not ride camels to school every day. I also did not live in pyramids, but I plan on building my future house in the shape of a pyramid.

In all seriousness, there is a misconception in the US that Egypt is not a safe country, when in fact it is. It is very safe to travel there, enjoy the sights, and experience the rich history and culture through tourism, which operates year round!

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Carmen – Spain

  • Carmen is an international exchange student from Spain
  • She attends Universidad de Burgos

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I came to study at Millersville because my home university organised an exchange with Millersville University.

While at Millersville I learned about: the Amish and went on the Amish trip with Global Education. I visited Washington and Philadelphia. I went to the Fist Friday in downtown Lancaster. I will go to New York also with Global Education.

One new cultural thing I learned is: There is more tolerance in this country.

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What would you like to share with the campus community about your culture or country? I would encourage everybody to travel and visit another countries and cultures.

I am glad to have this opportunity of studying abroad, I am so pleased and I will like to promote the idea of studying abroad.

Anyi – China

My name is Anyi Cai, and I am a sophomore this year. I am studying as a piano performance major with Dr. Pan. I also started taking harpsichord lessons with Dr. Horton last year. I am a part of the university’s women’s choir, and I also accompany for other instrumentalists in the department. I won third place of the Lancaster Instrumental Competition in 2015, and am also a recipient of the 2016 Dutcher Memorial Music Scholarship.