International students find second home

Valida Azamatova News Editor

New international students come to SDSU every semester. Our university is a place that can connect students from any part of the world. 

In order to help our new students adjust to the American culture, the SDSU Office of International Affairs conducts an orientation week. During one week, the staff and special diplomats help new international students get used to the university system and the new American environment that surrounds them. 

The most interesting part of the orientation is that the diplomats are ordinary international students as well, just experienced ones. One of them was me. I remember coming to SDSU last January as a new international student from Uzbekistan, and now after a few months I could share my own experience with the new students as a diplomat. I understand what all international students go through: new environment, homesickness, learning to live as an independent individual and maybe even culture shock. My goal was to make them feel that as little of that as possible. Being a diplomat was actually really fun; we received a one-day training, free backpacks and T-Shirts with a special logo. The most important thing is that anyone could be a diplomat, it was basically volunteering. 

I can confidently say that this was one of my favorite volunteer works I have ever done. I mean, where else can you meet new people, learn something new and at the same time have fun? Only in SDSU. One week that will always be in your memory, that is what orientation really is. 

Along with registration and filling various documents, the students get to know each other, eat ice cream, climb the Campanile, explore campus, and especially our favorite place- Wal-Mart. I actually never climbed the Campanile before this orientation week, so I can definitely cross “climbing the Campanile” from my “to do list”. I just really hope that our new international students will feel as though SDSU is a little bit like home, because for me, SDSU takes a special part in my heart. I know that it sounded a little bit cheesy but here I found my best friends, met the most interesting teachers and still have a chance to meet someone new every day. I want to make the most of each day here. That is why I hope we have many more diplomats next semester. International orientation is an excellent opportunity to gain a lot of experiences as well as memories in one magical week. 


Valida Azamatova is a political science major. She can be reached at [email protected]