International Roos

Name: Jose Pineda-Lugo

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Time in the U.S.: 4 years

Country of Origin: Valencia, Venezuela

“My family would describe me as a pretty laid back and positive person.  I also try to be as friendly as possible with everyone.  I’ve had to deal with different things in my life an there is always a solution.  Keeping a positive attitude has helped me through tough times and helped me be where I am today.  In 2012, I graduated from high school, and came here to visit family.  While I was here, my uncle asked me if I wanted to stay.  I said, “No”.  I went back and while in my second semester, my university closed for 1 year and a half due to governmental issues with budget.  My uncle asked me again if I wanted to come here for school and I said, “sure, I will try!”  We figured it out and I ended up coming here in 2014.  It was really hard in the beginning with my English being really poor.  I met lots of friends who helped me, and I tried my best every time.  My best friend’s family (he sharers the same name as me too), they have 10 kids who came here without a penny and now most of them are professionals or in college.  It is pretty inspiring for me because when I start to feel tired, and want to give up, I think of them and it really motivates me.”

Jose is working towards his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and looking forward to graduating!  He hopes to start OPT so that he can learn as much as he can in his field.  He is currently considering a Master’s degree but is wanting to take things one step at a time.  Jose is also very happy to have held two different jobs now, one when he was at Johnson County Community College where he won an award for Outstanding Student.  He currently works as a Student Assistant at ISAO and is grateful for the experience.

International Roos

Name: Karthik Burra

Major: Electrical Engineering, M.S.

Time in the U.S.: Since Fall 2016

Hometown: Hyderabad, India

“I value good memories in life for I depend on the many happy events that happen in my life to to through the tougher times of life.  It is where we learn from our mistakes and what we can do better.  While in Manipal University (India), until my 2nd year, it was a different journey for me.  I was more into my studies, introverted and reserved.  Once I studied abroad in Poland, during my 3rd year, it really changed me.  I moved out of my bubble for the first time while in Poland.  I knew people who were very helpful and kind to me.   They always encouraged me to try new things and eventually helped my out of my bubble.  So, when I came here to UMKC, I knew I wanted to help students to have the opportunity to experience what I did.  I applied to be a Graduate Assistant for the Study Abroad office and I’m proud to work there.”

Karthik also enjoys playing badminton in Swinney.  Most recently, he played in the Topeka Regional Tournament and won Gold in Consolation!  Karthik is also a Graduate Assistant for the International Academic Programs Office at UMKC.  He has always wanted to help students to study abroad and is very grateful for the opportunity to do so.  He has also received a scholarship within his mater’s program to help continue his education here.  His career interests lie in Data Science and Machine Learning which was inspired by a class he took with Dr. Reza Derakhshani (he highly recommends all student take his class!).  His main advice for student is “step outside of your comfort zone and you will grow!”

International Roos

Raphael Bartmann

Major: Business major, emphasis in Marketing

Time in the U.S.: 1 semester (since August 2017)

Country of Origin: Villingen-Schwenningen, Germany

“I would say that I am a trustful, spontaneous person.  I love to enjoy new things.  Also, I care a ot about my family and friends.  It is important for me to stay in touch with them but it gets difficult sometimes with the difference.  For me, it has not been much of an issue being away from home.  I see it as an opportunity to experience new things.  It is an adventure and I want to get the most of out of being here.  I’m only here for four months and so it is not a long time.  I will miss experiencing new things everyday while I am here.  I am proud that I can adjust and get along well in new environments.  I managed it really well when I was in Canada and here too.  It has helped me grow personally.  Here you are forced to meet new people and get out of your comfort zone to explore.”

Raphael imagines himself working in a position that someday manages international business.  He is excited for the endless possibilities ahead of him with his eyes set towards pursuing a Masters degree abroad.  He still wants to explore his options and is very excited for his future endeavors!

International Roos

Wen Wen Chong

Major: Counseling Psychology, Ph.D.

Time in the U.S.: 9 years

From: Malacca, Malaysia

“Who I am as a person, is something I am proud of.  I don’t mean I am perfect or anything but who I am today is a version I really like.  I’m happy with who I am and what I have accomplished so far.  That in itself means a lot to me because I think it speaks to my family values – how my parents raised me and I feel like I can continue to grow to become a better version of myself.  But, I am really happy with who I am at this point in my life.  I think I am the person that I want to be.  Of course, there are things and areas in which I want to grow.  I have my strengths, I have my weaknesses.  But I am happy with who I am at this point in my life.  And, that to me is a great achievement.  I do like myself as a person, and I think that that’s something people sometimes don’t value.”

Wen is currently a 4th year Counseling Psychology, doctoral student who enjoys Kansas City’s outdoor and arts scene.  She also enjoys the “better” traffic here and colder weather in comparison to Texas.  Wen does wish there was more diversity in KC but appreciates the occasional food and cultural festivals offered.

International Roos

 

Mary Okafor

Major: Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Chemistry and Mathematics

Time in the U.S: 3 years

From:  Abiriba, Abia State, Nigeria

“I like the people of Kansas City.  I have made lifelong friends who really contributed in making my stay here great.  Being an international student made it a little challenging to adapt to the location but having made friend made it a lot easier.  I also happened to have my brother here and that helped in my transition.

Having been in Kansas City for three years, I enjoyed visiting the Nelson Atkins Museum to relax.  If I am looking to eat at a nice restaurant, watch movies or hang out, I go to either the Plaza or Downtown.  I have to love the barbeque here too.  My commute is also short because these nice places are really close to my school and the use of my ID as a bus pass makes it even better.  These experiences have made my stay here a lot more fun.”

Mary is also currently very passionately involved in research to create Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) sensor hand glove.  She has received a research fund to support this research effort under the guidance of Dr. Gregory King.  This glove would help capture the hand kinematics during surgical procedures thereby reducing surgical errors.  Mary believes that having an education is an important step to building one’s career.  However, she also has her eyes set on giving back to the community with her skills and expertise.

REQUIRED: E-Orientation and Check-In

Welcome to the UMKC Family! Now that you have been admitted and have made plans to attend UMKC, you’ll need to do two very important things before you can enroll in classes:

  1. Complete E-Orientation before you arrive. You’ll need to use your SSO and password to log in here: https://cf3.umkc.edu/isao/services/students/eor/login.cfm
  2. Once you have finished E-Orientation, you will need to sign up for a REQUIRED Check-In Session. The Check-In Session is a required part of your F-1 or J-1 visa where we will talk about the rules of your visa and UMKC.
    • You’ll need to bring your passport, I-20 or DS-2019, I-94 and any immunization records you may have to the check-in session you sign up for.
    • Please be sure that you will be in the U.S. for whichever check-in date you decide on. The sessions take about an hour and you’ll need to show up to the ISAO Office at least 10 minutes before your scheduled time so that we can get copies of your documents.
    • While the login screen looks the same as E-Orientation, it is actually different. However, you will still use your SSO and password to log in. Choose your check-in session here: https://cf3.umkc.edu/isao/services/students/check-in/login.cfm

If you have any problems logging into E-Orientation or signing up for a Check-In Session, please email isao@umkc.edu with a screenshot of the error message that you are receiving and your UMKC student ID number so that we can look into the issue.

We are so glad you have chosen UMKC and we can’t wait to meet you!

 

 

Fall 2017 International Student Orientation Announced

UMKC will welcome new international students during the Fall 2017 International Student Orientation on Thursday, August 17, 2017 from 7:30 AM to 4:00PM in the Student Union.  During Orientation you will learn everything you need to know and do as a new student at UMKC.

Orientation is mandatory for all new F-1 and J-1 student visa holders admitted to academic programs.

If you do not attend Orientation you will have a “hold” placed on your account that will prevent enrollment for future semesters, until you attend and complete the next available Orientation.  As this is a university requirement, no exceptions to this rule will be made.

During your Orientation, you will lay the groundwork for future academic success by connecting with ISAO staff, faculty, advisors and other students.  You’ll have the opportunity to explore campus and community resources, learn about health insurance and cultural differences and make some new friends.

Staff from a variety of campus departments and current students will help you transition to UMKC during Orientation.

Please register for Orientation by clicking Register.

If you have questions about Orientation please contact the International Student Affairs Office (ISAO) at 816-235-1113 or by email

International Roos – Tomveyi Vidamon

International Roos – Tomveyi Vidamon

Where are you from?

I am from Togo.

For how long have you been in the U.S. and Kansas City?

I have been in the U.S. since 2007, I started in Iowa Western Community College, but I decided to start all over again at UMKC in 2015 when I was accepted in the yearlong Entrepreneurship program at the Bloch School.

I am currently on OPT, I am a UMKC Bloch School Alumnus, I graduated last Spring 2016.

Why did you choose UMKC?

UMKC is one of the most known universities in the Midwest. I have friends that went here and referred this school to me. The business program for startups and entrepreneurs is very good here.

What do you like about UMKC?

I like the environment, the diversity, the activities and the organizations with an international focus such as African, Vietnamese, Chinese, etc.

I was amazed of the opportunities offered at the Bloch School. They offered me the knowledge and skills to solve problems and provide solutions. I also met different entrepreneurs and students. I now can think outside of the box.

What is your favorite place in Kansas City?

I really like the Plaza, and eating at Fogo do Chao. I also like Ice Skating in Crown Center. I really like the people in Kansas City. Everybody has been very welcoming.

What is your piece of advice for current and prospective students?

Attend classes. Not only because it is good for your attendance grade, but because you can learn from your classmates as well. Every class is very important. My classmates were awesome, they would ask questions that I did not think of, and it just opened my mind on how problems or a concept can be perceived or approached. Also, interact with people from other cultures, I am very pro-diversity and there is so much you can learn from other students at UMKC. If you are making decisions about your education, I would suggest you to take time to think what you want to do and don’t just jump into a specific program or college/university.

Who is your major source of help?

Mr.  Lee, my advisor, he is more than a friend to me, he is like a guide and mentor. He is always there for me.

Mr. Ryan has helped me a lot too, I was new to the city and the system, and he helped me so much.

They were very patient. I was not from here and saw things differently, but they helped me have a better understanding of what was expected from me.

What is your biggest accomplishment?

Being accepted at the UMKC Bloch School Entrepreneurship program. I applied to other universities because I was not sure I was going to be accepted. And one day I opened my email, and saw the acceptance, I could not believe it.

Also, I presented our startup “MyWorldWall”, at the “One Million Cups” that was hosted by the Kauffman Foundation in 2016. http://www.1millioncups.com/kansascity/presentations/myworldwall-10994

I have had the honor to be interviewed by UMKC Today as well. Being able to showcase my startup in the area and online has been a great opportunity.

Favorite quote:

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.” (Napoleon Hill)

Since I have been in this country, I have had many opportunities, but I missed many opportunities as well. This quote helps me see into my future, every challenge and adversity you may face is different, but each one of them is preparing you for the future.

International Roos – Maria Ignacia Leal Riquelme

International Roos – Maria Ignacia Leal Riquelme

But you can call me Ina.

Where are you from?

I am from Chile.

 

How long have you been here?

I have been here since January 2017, so two months and a half now.

 

What is your major?

I am studying English in the Applied Language Institute at UMKC. In Chile I am a senior in English Teaching for high school students.

 

Why did you choose UMKC?

UMKC was the university assigned by my government program.

 

What do you like about UMKC?

It has a lot of resources available for students to be successful in class. For example, the lab resources. The buildings are beautiful, and this campus is enormous, and there is a huge library. I also like the safety, there are blue phones around campus to call the campus police if you need them.

Royall Hall, the school of education and the student union are where I spend the majority of the time.

 

What is your favorite place in Kansas City?

The parks are very interesting, also the fountains. I knew that Kansas City was the city of fountains before I coming here. Downtown is very nice too. I like the museums, the mall (I like shopping).

My favorite place to eat is where you can feel comfortable with which you are eating. There are many Mexican restaurants, but the food is so spicy. I like Chinese food, and a burger place, I cannot remember the name, it was one of these famous places.

 

What is your piece of advice for current and prospective students?

You have to be very perseverant if you want to achieve your goals, do your homework, your papers… Be responsible and you will be successful. Also be careful, think twice because you never know. Enjoy your stay here and don’t think too much about things that bother you.

 

Who is your major source of help?

The first week I was lost, but my classmates and I help each other. We came together from Chile. It is good to not be alone in a foreign country.

Also, Mr. Chuck and Ms. Adams have been very supportive. They were my practicum teachers.

And of course, Ms. Golden who helped me finding a host family before coming to Kansas City which was helpful. I was with an American host family at the beginning of my stay. Then I moved to a different American host family who also happens to be Chilean. So we are able to speak both English and Spanish.

 

What is your biggest accomplishment?

I am doing my practicum here, meaning that I am teaching two classes at UMKC. Besides, improving my English: getting to know friends. Although it is difficult because I do not have much time. Also, to have the opportunity to see the world from a different point of view, and being open minded about it.

And I am going to sing during culture night! I am really proud to represent my country and I am looking forward to it.

 

Favorite quote:

Always try your best.

 

You can do things without feeling them, you can do things with a lot of enthusiasm, do them the best way you can, with a happy face, appreciate life.

 

International Roos – Ana Fernandes Barbosa

International Roos – Ana Fernandes Barbosa

 

Where are you from?

I am from France. I was born in Portugal but I have been living in France for 8 years.

 

How long have you been here?

I have been in the U.S. and in Kansas City since August of 2016.

 

What is your major?

I am a Foreign Language major in France, and here at UMKC I am a Communications and Spanish Major.

 

Why did you choose UMKC?

As an exchange student, I had a list of universities that were partners with my university in France. When they considered my English level and budget they decided that UMKC would be the best fit for me.

 

What do you like about UMKC?

I like the people here. Everybody is very friendly and provide students the resources we need. The campus is very big, and we have everything we need, a lot of events. Also, international students from all over the world are here.

 

What is your favorite place in Kansas City?

I like the Plaza. I like the shops and the architecture. It is very nice even just going for walk there. I like the Power and Light District to go out on weekends, and Westport. I can find lots of students that I know there and it is very friendly too.

 

What is your piece of advice for current and prospective students?

Be open to anyone who approaches you, it will be easier to adapt. Be open minded, make friends. Don’t stay at home, go to every event, be involved, and meet other people.  There is something new happening every day.

 

Who is your major source of help?

My mom. She has given me everything she has so I never lack of anything and have all the chances by my side. She is a strong woman and a role model for me. Also the group of friends that I have. They are like my second family and they keep me motivated to always give the best I can.

 

What is your biggest accomplishment?

Despite the fact of speaking 4 languages fluently I would say is to have friends from all over the world and being so comfortable in international environments.

 

Favorite quote:

Good things don’t come from your comfort zone.