Ashinaga Scholars: A Day in the Life (Part 3)

November 21, 2016 — Meeting new people and making friends as an international student in a foreign country can be challenging. That is what Juniour was most nervous about as she anticipated her arrival to the US. However, as soon as Juniour stepped onto DePauw University’s beautiful green campus, making friends became the least of her challenges. Now, she has a solid community of friends and supporters surrounding her at a place she can call home.


At a young age, Juniour’s father sadly passed away, and with her mother busy working towards a college degree, Juniour was raised at home with her siblings by her grandparents. As a child, Juniour was an excellent student and worked hard in school, but she often felt timid speaking up to others and openly expressing herself. In Zimbabwe, she says, people are usually only open and friendly with people they are familiar with. In the classroom, learning was all about listening to the teacher, memorizing, taking notes, and acing the exams.


Making friends at DePauw was easy with such a supportive and open community surrounding Juniour. However, stepping into DePauw’s discussion-based classrooms was another challenge. Her professors expect students to come to class having read the materials and prepared to share their opinions. Juniour was not accustomed to sharing her opinions so openly with her peers and professors. However, she has embraced the challenge and is facing it head on. In fact, speaking up and being more open, even with strangers, has been something she enjoys most about studying at DePauw. It gives her the confidence to be able to succeed in and out of the classroom, and it doesn’t hurt that you can always find someone who is willing to talk to you.


Now, nearing the end of her first semester as a college student in the US, Juniour is excited to take a short break from her academics and enjoy a traditional, American Thanksgiving feast with friends. Juniour looks forward to the next several years of engaging with the DePauw community and making new friends.