WELCOME TO IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY!

The mission of the International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) is to provide immigration and cross-cultural expertise to create a welcoming and supportive environment for all international students throughout their university experience. Because laws and regulations governing legal presence in the U.S. change frequently, it is important to consult the ISSO for the latest information and to understand how it applies to your individual situation. Stop by the office periodically, check the ISSO website frequently, and carefully read the ISSO Weekly Newsletter and all the ISSO e-mails you receive. Please note that the university will use your iastate.edu address for all official communications.

If you have questions specifically pertaining to Orientation Week, please send all inquiries to isorient@iastate.edu. 


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ISSO OUTREACH AMBASSADORS

Student Ambassadors

Have a question but not sure who to ask? Contact ISSO Outreach Ambassadors!

Our ISSO Outreach Ambassadors are a group of friendly and helpful international students who are here to answer your questions and share their experiences. They will be happy to tell you about student life, ISU and Ames resources and help you get connected with the student organizations. Do not hesitate, contact our outreach ambassadors today and get your ISU adventure started!

 

CAROLINA MONTEIRO

cmont@iastate.edu

 

BHAGYASHRI PARAB

bparab@iastate.edu

Hometown: Curitiba, a city in southern Brazil. 

What is your major? Why did choose it? What do you like about it and what do you think is challenging about it?  

I am currently doing a Masters Degree in Student Affairs, but I also have a background in International Relations and Social Policy. I decided to focus on Student Affairs because I have been working with international students for many years, helping them fulfill their dreams of studying in the United States – just as I did!   

What are your hobbies and interests? 

I love travelling and exploring new places, I doesn't matter whether it's a half-day getaway 20 miles from home or a month backpacking at the other side of the world. I also love watching series, baking and picnicking with friends.  

What is your favorite place in the USA?  

My favorite place in the US is San Diego, CA, where I lived for over 3 years. It's a beautiful city close to the ocean and it has many parks, trails for hiking, good restaurants and lovely weather.  

What is your favorite place internationally? 

One of my favorite places that I've been to is Myanmar, and more specifically the city of Sagaing and its whereabouts. The view of the Buddhist "pagodas" everywhere you look is breathtaking, and the people are one of the nicest I've ever met.  

Where would you like to travel next, and why? 

Tough question! A couple of places on my bucket list are Northern Norway to see the northern lights, Laos to visit its many temples, and to travel on the Trans Siberian Railway from Russia to China. 

What are your career plans? 

I intend to continue working with international, migrant and refugee students, helping them achieve their goals and empowering them. 

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU? 

Get involved! Whatever interests you have, there will likely be a club or group on campus where you can meet like-minded people to keep exploring; and if it doesn't exist, remember: create it!

 

Hometown Pune, India

What is your major? Why did you choose it? What do you like about it and what do you think is challenging about it?

 

Major: Information Systems

I love almost everything about it - Classes, opportunities to attend Symposiums and conferences, working on complex problems, everything!

Time and task management for group projects might be challenging as it depends on the people in the group but it gets sorted out by communication.

What are your hobbies and interests?

 

I love playing badminton.

I do sketching sometimes. I like reading. Currently I am reading ‘The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon’ by Brad Stone

What is your favorite place in the USA?

 

I haven’t travelled much but I really liked Chicago, Illinois.

What is your favorite place internationally?

 

I visited China recently and Shanghai is my favorite so far. That might change when I visit the other countries on my Travel List.

Where would you like to travel next, and why?

 

I would love to see Europe next!

What are your career plans?

 

The short term plan is to complete MS and my research.

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU?

 

Don’t be afraid to ask for help!

   
 

IVY SPITZER

ispitzer@iastate.edu

 

VAN LY

lybaovan@iastate.edu

Hometown: The East Village of Davenport, Iowa

 

What is your major? Why did you choose it? What do you like about it and what do you think is challenging about it?

 

My first major is spanish translation. The reason why I chose my major is a very long one; but a short version is I felt I could make a bigger difference in people's lives if I knew more than one language. I love being a spanish major because it gives me the opportunity to connect with another ⅓ of the world. A challenging part of being a WLC Major in general is a lot of the older generation do not take me very seriously.

 

What are your hobbies and interests?

 

When I am not working or studying, I love to be out in nature. I have a wide appreciation for breathing fresh air. I also love to listen to others, make people laugh, and sleeping.

 

Favorite place in the USA?

 

Any area that has an In-and-Out.

 

Favorite place internationally?

 

Granada, Spain!

 

Where would you like to travel next, and why?

 

My next adventure will be in Cuba. I want to go and experience another Latino culture before I graduate college.

 

What are your career plans?

    

I have a lot of dreams when it comes to my future career; but every dream involves helping others. For me that is all I need to accomplish in life.

 

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU?

    

Come here with excitement and willingness to learn. We want you here and we want you to excel!

 

Hometown: Bac Lieu, Vietnam

 

What is your major? Why did you choose it? What do you like about it and what do you think is challenging about it?

I major in architecture, where science meets art. I enjoy the process itself in architecture. You might have heard of the culture of working long hours in architecture, but it is rewarding to be able to successfully put ideas down on paper and bring buildings to real life after hours and hours of revising the design and solving technical issues. The most challenging thing to me is to balance out the impact of form and function in making design decision.

What are your hobbies and interests?

I like travelling, cooking, making stuffs, watching movies, swimming, growing miniature plants, and outdoor activities. Iowa has awesome lakes for hiking, fishing, kayaking, and camping that you should definitely check out. Big Creek State Park and Okoboji Lake are some of them.

Favorite place in the USA?

My favorite place in the USA is San Francisco.

Favorite place internationally?

My favorite place internationally is my home country, Vietnam. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter  where you are but who you are with.

 

Where would you like to travel next, and why?

My next desirable stops: Grand Canyon, Netherlands, Egypt, and Japan.

 

What are your career plans?

I would like to practice in architecture for several years. Long term, I hope to do some business in design and/or real estates.

 

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU?

My advice for new international students is to check out ISSO social events, get out of your home, ask questions, and seek help.
   
 

BRITTA ROPPE

brittar@iastate.edu

 

AMIR HAMZA

hr24612@iastate.edu

Hometown: Des Moines, Iowa

What is your major? Why did choose it? What do you like about it and what do you think is challenging about it?

 

I chose my major, Public Relations, because I enjoy communicating with others, writing about interesting things and thinking of creative ways to interact with the world. I also love that it encompasses so many different skill sets.

 

What are your hobbies and interests?

My hobbies and interests include traveling as much as possible, reading anything from a how-to book about computers to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, and throwing pottery. I also love cooking, hiking and learning new things.

 

What is your favorite place in the USA?

 

It may be cliché but my favorite place inside the US has to be Oahu, Hawaii. Who wouldn’t enjoy being around mountains, tropical weather and the Pacific Ocean?

 

What is your favorite place internationally?

 

One of my favorite places internationally is Croatia. Croatia has such an interesting history and culture. It’s also home to some of the most beautiful national parks, like Plitvice Lakes, and you can eat amazing pizza and gelato all day long!

 

Where would you like to travel next, and why?

 

I would love to make my next big trip either Iceland, Puerto Rico or New Zealand. I love traveling to beautiful places, experiencing different cultures and learning more about their histories.

 

What are your career plans?

 

My general future plan is to work many different jobs where I can be creative, travel, give back to the community.

 

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU?

 

Get involved. Talk to as many people as possible and join as many clubs as you want. If it sounds crazy, but intrigues you, try it out. You could end up loving it and making amazing friends! And don’t be afraid to ask questions. Every person at Iowa State has needed to ask for help at some point and most people on campus will be very willing to help.

 

 

 

Hometown: Islamabad, Pakistan.

 

What is your major? Why did you choose it? What do you like about it and what do you think is challenging about it?

 

My major is Computer Engineering. I chose this major while keeping the future in mind. Robotics, Internet of things, solar energy, machine learning and electrical vehicles are emerging markets and a Computer Engineer is an essential part in all these fields. Moreover, Computer Engineering gives a student the best of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering. This helps the student to master a broad aspect of science, hence, opening, even more, doors of opportunity.  

 

What are your hobbies and interests?

 

My hobbies are working out, web development, book reading and traveling.

 

Favorite place in the USA

 

My favorite place in the US has to be the Silicon Valley. I know this might sound a bit nerdy but this is what inspires me. I see Silicon Valley as a place where innovation takes birth and depicts how the future of the humanity is going to be. Moreover, all the startups motivate me to start one of my own in the future.

 

Favorite place internationally

 

My favorite place has to be my hometown hands down. It might not be the perfect place to live however, I have an emotional attachment to this part of the Earth due to family, friends and unforgettable memories.

 

Where would you like to travel next, and why?

 

I can easily pinpoint some fancy places in Europe or Australia but for me, that’s just not very exciting. I would love to visit areas where people rarely go to due to some unconventional reasons. I would love to visit North Korea not because I like to spend my entire life in a jail but to explore and learn about a place that is presumed to be dangerous. I know the reality is much different, I can feel it in my guts. Secondly, I would love to visit outer space. Be among the heavenly bodies and exploring new destinations for starting a new human colony. 

 

What are your career plans?

 

Getting employed is probably the easiest thing a college graduate can do. If one has to make a difference in this world, exploring ideas for a shaping a bright and safe future and putting those ideas into effect is what everyone should do at some point in their life. For me personally, Yes, I would try to find a job just like everyone else but with a mindset to meet likeminded people and to get in touch with investors. After which I would dedicate my life to achieving a list of entrepreneurial goals that I have in my mind. Pakistan faces a number of challenges and I would try my best to address them in a constructive yet sustainable way. Autonomous electrical vehicles, space exploration, education, farming, air travel, e-commerce and solar energy are promising fields where I can make an impact.  

 

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU?

 

1: You will make mistakes but make sure you turn those mistakes into lessons by not repeating them.

 

2: Don’t be hesitant to switch majors. The beauty of Iowa State University is that it lets you explore until you find what interests you. I switched from Mechanical Engineering to Computer Engineering and it was a decision that I will never regret.

 

3: Socialize more because you didn’t just come to the US to study, you are also here to learn the American way of life and how it has paved the way for this nation to be successful in every field.

 

4: Ask more questions because this is not your home anymore. Things are different here. Instead of doing something regretful, ask even if you have a slightest of doubt in mind.

 

5: Remain in touch with the ISSO office.

 

6: Respect people’s culture but don’t remain silent if that’s not reciprocated.

 

7: Lastly, make the most out of college because this will determine your future. Don’t just work hard, work smart and have fun.  

 

 
  
 

YUSUF HUSSAIN

yhussain@iastate.edu

 

Hometown: Patna, India/Doha, Qatar

 

What is your major?: Undergrad in Chem Engineering

 

What are your hobbies and interests?

Photography, Reading, Travelling

 

Favorite Food: Shawarma

 

Favorite Destinations: Chicago and L.A

 

Where would you like to travel next, and why?

Everywhere in the U.S. and Europe

 

What advice will you give to the new international students who come to study at ISU?

A great man once said "Nothing just is, everything is becoming". Keep that in mind about yourself and take it easy.