I have been instrumental in tutoring several of your students in English as a Second Language in preparation for the TOEFL [Test of English as a Foreign Language], as well as learning about their cultural backgrounds. I am currently a tutor, tutor trainer and board member of Literacy Volunteers of Buffalo and Erie County. The students I have met, who are Korean, Japanese and Chinese, have an interesting perspective on life in Buffalo. They are immigrants here with a purpose, and I don’t know why we don’t recruit more international students to stay in our area.
As a Buffalo native, I was happily surprised to be able to get my MBA along with an MA in international trade geography at UB, befriend many international students, help Americans as a study abroad adviser and meet my wife during the MBA exchange program in Mexico!
I was given the extraordinary opportunity to be a program assistant in the International Living Center, at that time located in Richmond Hall. I planned programming for and was able to meet fellow students from Sweden, Ecuador, Brazil, Turkey, China, Korea, Japan and many other countries. It made a huge impact on me personally, giving me a keen appreciation and understanding of other cultures, and friendships that continue today!
As a freshman, I was not sure what direction my education would take. After moving to Red Jacket, making friends from around the world and participating in several international organizations, I made my decision to pursue Asian studies as my major. Knowing people from many Asian countries was just as educational to me as anything I learned in the classroom or from textbooks.
Responses to a question posed in “In My Opinion,” a feature of the monthly electronic newsletter @UB. To subscribe, go to the UB Link menu at www.alumni.buffalo.edu.