International Perspectives: Spring 2015

March 2, 2015

International Perspectives is a series spotlighting international students from across Yale’s schools and departments, who share inspiring moments and unexpected ways their passion for learning has been ignited at Yale.

Anders Fridén, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences ’16, Sweden
“The greatest inspiration at Yale is unquestionably my fellow students. I’ve never before encountered such a breadth of talent and experience, from helicopter pilots and officers to journalists and authors. Hailing from all over the world, they are united by their kindness, curiosity and wit. Together with excellent professors, they make the learning experience very rewarding and intensive.”

Diego Torres Quintanilla, Yale College 16, Mexico
“Yale’s most remarkable feature is its commitment to interdisciplinary learning. Despite being focused in the STEM fields, I have had a holistic academic experience thanks not only to Yale’s endless course offerings, but also to a community that thrives on diversity and open discourse. The community’s diversity in academic backgrounds, life experiences, ideas, and cultures has greatly complemented my education and inspired me to be a better, more open individual.”

Grace Kankindi, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies 16, Rwanda
“Students admitted to FES participate in a three-week training course called MODS, which is short for Technical Skills Modules. You spend two weeks camping in forests, learning basic wilderness skills and field sampling methods. Plus, one week is spent in New Haven with a focus on urban ecology. There’s plenty of hiking, kayaking, campfire singing, and socializing throughout that time. It’s such a cool way to meet everyone and hear their stories, and it all happens before the first day of class!”

Michelle Chan, Visiting International Student, Yale College ’16, Hong Kong
“At Yale, I’m constantly learning from my peers. In my art classes, even though we are all working on individual projects, we learn from each other’s accomplishments and setbacks. It’s a supportive environment, where everyone can teach, learn, and grow together. I was recently in a documentary film class and I made a short film about Yale’s brand and typeface, inspired by the Helvetica documentary made in 2007. Film topics ranged from the Payne Whitney Gym to Africa to climate skeptics, reflecting everyone’s passions and interests.”

Minsun Cha, Yale College 17, South Korea
“I jumped into Mock Trial my freshman year and have had the most incredibly rewarding experience. I’ve picked up new critical thinking skills, traveled across the US for tournaments and found an invaluable community within my team. We push and support each other, and in that process, I’ve been able to discover so much about both myself and the various ways in which people engage most effectively with one another. Even if we don’t win, being a part of such a talented and dedicated group of friends is a prize in itself.”

Nur Eken, Yale College 17, Turkey
“You feel like anything is possible here. Learning happens for learning’s sake. People pursue their passions, no matter what. Everyone is talented in unique ways. You can push boundaries and engage in discussions about difficult topics, something that I did not fully experience in my hometown. It’s a special place. I love being part of such an amazing community.”

Rotimi Tewe, School of Management 16, Nigeria
“Yale is truly diverse in all respects. I have learnt to appreciate viewpoints of individuals of different cultures, professional backgrounds, religious affiliations and sexual orientation. This is valuable to me since I spent my entire life in Nigeria before moving here. I now have a broader view of the world and I look forward to benefiting from further interactions with my colleagues, sharing my experiences with them and enjoying the rest of my stay here.”