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University hosts events for international students

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There are 545 international students that come from 74 different countries that are currently seeking a degree at Texas State.

International Education Week hosted a series of events starting Nov. 2-13. These events ranged from an international student Thanksgiving luncheon, Nov. 10 to a festival of lights put on by the Indian Student Association, Nov. 4.

Along with International Education Week, the International Office works year round to provide resources for students to feel welcome at the university. Two weeks into every semester, the International Office hosts a welcome social, where current and incoming international faculty, staff and students can meet each other. There are other international student organizations present at the social so students can find collaboration with groups they may be interested in.

Additionally, the graduate college hosted its ninth international research conference Nov. 7-8. The conference was an opportunity for international graduate students from varying fields to present their independent research findings. These students received feedback on their presentation from experienced faculty members.

Victoria Gonzales is the international engagement specialist within the International Office at Texas State.

One of her favorite events of the year is the exchange program discussion, where students have the opportunity to exchange ideas and discuss cross-cultural experiences. At this event, students seeking to study abroad can meet with other students–international or domestic–who have done an exchange program.

“It helps to talk one-on-one and get some answers on what their experience was like and what they can expect for the future of their travels,” Gonzales said.

Gonzales noted Texas State has some unique characteristics students should keep in mind.

“Our university is very good with research; that is going to be a big factor for them,” Gonzales said.

Additionally, “San Marcos has a great location in Texas,” Gonzales said, “Central Texas is one of the fastest economic growing places in the nation–and students see that. Some students aren’t just looking towards the university as a whole, but the program they are going into to see how strong that department is.”

Ashutosh Yadav, engineering graduate student, was born and raised in Nepal. He came to the United States to pursue a higher education as an engineering graduate student. When making the decision on which university he would choose, it helped that his family knew the area.

“My family recommended me to join Texas State, and everything has been really really good so far,” Yadav said. “The people in San Marcos are so nice.”

Foreign exchange student Laura Stouby Hansen is from Denmark, studying for her graduate’s degree in mass communication at Texas State.

“One of the things that I was really surprised with when I got here was that people are so open and willing to help,” Hansen said.

Gonzales noted the international week of celebrations was a success, with the highest number attendees at the Thanksgiving luncheon in its history. “We traditionally have a large turnout–we love our students, so that’s what we love to see,” Gonzales said.

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