Asian Correspondent » University of Wyoming Asian Correspondent Thu, 28 May 2015 01:43:36 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Wyoming – one student’s discoveries Wed, 13 Oct 2010 16:13:02 +0000  

Most international students, like myself, arrive at the University of Wyoming in Laramie in the beginning of Fall. The weather is great, with the leaves on the trees taking on a colorful, vibrant hue. Nothing however, prepared me for winter.  But, if you do wind up in Wyoming, please heed my advice and buy warm clothes. Thermal underwear is a must along with a cold weather jacket and a nice woolen cap. It does occasionally get cold in Laramie and the wind can blow. On the positive side, the snow covered place has its own beauty. Bare branches and rooftops covered in snow looks mesmerizing.  A snowstorm doesn’t last very long  – the roads might be covered with snow a foot high in the morning, and then suddenly by mid-afternoon there is nothing on the roads, and it could very well be the other way around. So in short I’ve learned to be prepared, dress warm, and in layers.

As a student I’ve found life at the University of Wyoming rewarding and enriching. I am a different person now and for the better. The people in Laramie are friendly and caring, the staff at UW and the International Students Office even more so. But I’ve learned that it all depends on me, and whether Imake the best use of the resources the University has to offer.

If you love the outdoors, this is the right place. Wyoming has beautiful mountain ranges, and vast forests including two of the most exciting and beautiful national parks in the world are within a day’s drive. The beautiful Snowy Range Mountains are only an hour’s drive from Laramie and a favorite with skiers and for those into snow-mobiles in the winter. It is even more beautiful in the summer for hikes and fishing. Do not miss an opportunity to visit Yellowstone and the Grand Teton national parks; go here once and I bet you will want to visit these beautiful places again. Yellowstone sits above a volcanic caldera and has more natural geysers than anywhere in the world. Another reason to visit is the abundant wildlife including wolves, bears, elk, and bison. The first time you see the Grand Tetons, your jaw will drop, and it is a sight you will never forget. While driving around the park, you will feel that every turn is picture perfect. The mountains seem unreal. Going on a hike lets you lose the crowds, and is also the best way to experience the beauty of the parks. Wyoming is the 9th largest state in the US and the least populated, and you can spend a lifetime exploring and still not scratch the surface. Other places I’ve visited and strongly suggest are the Fort Laramie National Historic site, Aspen Alley near Encampment, Cody, Devils Tower, and the Big Horn Mountains.

Road trips in Wyoming are my favorite!! Driving in Wyoming gives you a feeling that the roads belong to you because of the long endless highway, with no one in sight.

Don’t blink or you might miss a town and the sign that says – ELEVATION 6000, POPULATION 10!!

—Joyce Macarenhas, Senior in Geography, Goa, India

]]> 16
Wyoming takes a personal approach Wed, 29 Sep 2010 15:40:05 +0000

Hello!  I am Maria Almendares and I am the Office Associate in the International Students & Scholars office at the University of Wyoming.  I have the pleasure of working with all of the international students at UW and getting to know so many of them personally.  My first interaction with students is during the paperwork process before they even arrive in Laramie.  I often get to exchange emails with incoming students and answer questions about Laramie and UW.  I grew up in Laramie, so I think I have a good perspective of what Laramie has to offer to students.  I am also a UW graduate so I can speak to the merits of UW and the wonderful staff and faculty that we have.  I really enjoy communicating about Laramie with students because it is very different from most places that our students come from and I like to help students be prepared for what they will experience when they get here. 

Laramie is a nice town located in the Rocky Mountains and the surrounding areas have SO much to offer to students.  I think that students coming from Asian countries may not have had the opportunity to experience the mountains and many may not have spent much time outside of their city.  Our students get to experience nature and beauty everyday here!  We are surrounded by beautiful mountains that offer opportunities for climbing, hiking, biking, skiing, snowshoeing, fishing, animal watching, camping, and just being able to enjoy the outdoors.  Within the community itself, we generally feel safe and the campus is comfortable and provides a relaxed and unique place to learn. 

There are many cultural activities on campus so that students can experience theater, music, and dance from many parts of the US and the world.  UW also has collegiate level sports programs that engage students to spend social time with other students and possibly even learning about activities that might be new to them such as American Football.  When students return to campus at the beginning of the fall semester, Laramie seems to come alive a bit more and there is a buzz about town.  Activities increase and there is always something to do!   

Having attended UW and graduated from the College of Agriculture with a cross-departmental degree, I can truthfully say that we have some amazing faculty and staff on our campus!  I had the pleasure of working with so many great professors and instructors.  The ratio of students to professors is fairly low, so students receive more attention in their classes and have more opportunity to get to know their instructors.  UW also employs some of the top researchers in their field so we have excellent opportunities for students to get to work with and learn from these professionals.  I am always impressed with the friendships that professors create with their students and the amount of concern that they have for the success of their students.

On a personal note, I feel very lucky to get to meet so many people from so many countries!  Paperwork and immigration compliance is only one part of our job of the International Students and Scholars (ISS) Office.  I have worked at ISS for seven years and have had the pleasure of meeting some wonderful students and wonderful people.  I’m always proud that our international students have such wonderful grades and we see so many students succeed in the classroom. 

We take great pride in the accomplishments of our students both in the classroom and in their individual lives and enjoy celebrating their joys and successes.  I like to say that our office is like a “home away from home” for international students.  When student arrive on campus they inherit surrogate moms, sisters, aunts, or cousins – depending upon age of course! J I really enjoy when students come to my office to talk about their problems so that we can help them think them through and hopefully solve them, or when a student brings their family or friends by just to say hello.  It is my hope that our international students feel comfortable talking to me about things just like they would their friends or family at home.  Being so far from home cannot be easy, especially for new students, and I hope that I can provide at least a little bit of comfort to make it easier for them.  In my time at ISS, I have seen students come to UW for very short amounts of time and then return to their countries to share their knowledge and experience. 

There are also those students who I have met as young 18 year old freshmen who grow and learn and eventually earn their Bachelor’s or even graduate degrees and move on to the next phases of their life.  Sometimes we are lucky enough to stay in contact with these students as they move on, and sometimes we may never see or communicate with them again.  Either way, I know that I learn from every student that I have contact with and I hope that the staff in our office is able to have a positive impact on their education and life here in Laramie too.  It always makes me very happy when graduates come back to UW to visit and make a point to come to ISS to visit with us, or when I receive an email from a student telling me about what they are now doing in their own life after UW.  We say this often in our office, but we truly do work with the best students on campus!  And as our international student enrollment increases, we get to continue to meet more and more great people who will go on and impact the world in ways sometimes unimaginable.  How lucky we are to get to share the time we have together at the University of Wyoming!


]]> 1
Why should a student from Asia consider the University of Wyoming? Mon, 20 Sep 2010 21:28:28 +0000 Why? That is the wrong question. What you should ask is “why not”? Well, since you asked, let me explain why you should consider UW – the University of Wyoming. But first, let me tell you a little bit about myself. 

I was born and raised in the city of Jinan, Shandong province in China. I later went to Shandong University for my undergraduate and graduate studies.  At that time, not much was known about universities in the US and I had never heard about Wyoming and the University of Wyoming. Even I did, at that time, as an undergraduate, I could not afford to come to study in the US anyway. I feel, therefore, it is important for you to know about the University of Wyoming when time comes for you to choose your college, and when you have the options to choose from.

After I received my master degree in Biology, I worked as a lecturer at Shandong University for several years, before I went to University of Oklahoma to pursue my PHD degree in 1994. Therefore, I am qualified to be a ‘former’ student from Asia. I came to the University of Wyoming in 2001, working in the Zoology and Physiology department. I liked UW and Laramie during my interview, but love the university more and more over the last 10 years I’ve  lived here. I love it so much, that I let my daughter, who was an all A student in her high school, attend UW. She is now a freshman/sophomore at UW and she enjoys it very much.

So, back to the question, “Why not Wyoming?”  When you consider a university, including a university overseas, to pursue your dreams, you ought to ask yourself this important question: What are the most important factors that affect my selection or decision?

The quality of education?

The cost of living and study?

The environment of learning and the environment of living? 

The friendliness to international students?

The extracurricular activities?

For many Asian students (and as you know, I was one many years ago), the quality of academics is probably the # 1 consideration. When selecting a university, the first thing many of us do is to check the ranking of universities. That is fine, but keep in mind that many of us cannot afford to go to Harvard, or Stanford, due to various, including financial or academic reasons. Many of you may not want to, even if you are able to. Why? Academics are important, but shouldn’t be the only reason for selecting a particular university. College is not just for preparation, it is life itself. You want to get the best education possible, but you also want to have a full (or fuller?) life during your college years. Here are some other considerations:

Many, especially Asian students, want to learn the “western” culture, while they study in US. The state of Wyoming, located in the northwest region of US, is considered the west of the west. It is the 9th largest  in land, but the least populated state (Yes, Wyoming has less people than Alaska). The uniqueness of Wyoming provides a wonderful opportunity to Asian students to learn the traditional western culture. Laramie is at the southeast corner of Wyoming and is a small, peaceful college town with a population of 27,000. It is small yet offers many opportunities for extracurricular activities. People in Laramie are very friendly, especially towards international students. If you like outdoor activities, such hiking or skiing, UW is definitely for you.

Oh, I almost forget, the academics! UW is a national research university, which means that even undergraduates can have hands-on experience in cutting-edge research and scholarship. It has many world-class professors, conducting research from oil recovery to the recovery of dinosaur bones. Most class sizes at UW are small and students have a lot of opportunities to interact with professors, who are devoted to undergraduate and graduate education.

By the way, UW’s tuition fees are among the lowest in US, thanks to the general support of the state. Here, you receive the best college education, while paying a very low price.

So, why should you consider UW? Why not?

By Prof. Zhaojie Zhang,
Director of the Jenkins Microscopy Facility
University of Wyoming

]]> 0
Wyoming is adventure Wed, 15 Sep 2010 14:56:52 +0000 Chances are, if you’ve heard of Wyoming, images of the “wild west,” never-ending views, Yellowstone, and the Grand Tetons fill your imagination.  No question, these images are part of our history, our heritage and our surroundings.  Wyoming is more than a good vacation spot.  For me and my family it is home, and for more than 700 students from nearly 90 countries at the University of Wyoming, it’s a home away from home.

How does a student find themselves attending the University of Wyoming?  After all, Wyoming is the least populated state in the United States, with just around 550,000 people.  Laramie, home of UW, is around 27,000 people, many of which are affiliated with the university in some way.  It’s not a metropolitan locale, but it provides a unique western charm, a practical attitude, and amazing access to Rocky Mountain recreation to all those adventurous enough to live and learn here.   The bottom line, is that UW has always had the ability to attract a global student body who seek the feeling of community and belonging while studying far away from home.

More on this idea of adventure…  Any experience studying away from home will provide adventure.  Around every corner you’ll find something you’ve never seen or done before.  You’ll probably learn that much of it was never worth seeing or doing to begin with, but you do it with the hope that one or two of those experiences will help shape your view on the world and your own life.  Admittedly, I am a biased blogger, but I’d challenge you to find a university experience that will be more adventurous than coming to the United States, and studying in Wyoming.

Over the next several weeks, I’ve invited UW students and professors from various countries to blog about their “adventures” at the University of Wyoming, all with the hope that you’ll take the time to learn more about our home, and our university.


Noah Buckley, Director of Admissions, University of Wyoming

]]> 2