The International Students Club of St. Augustine College (SAC) was launched during a pleasant lunch that included a pumpkin decorations contest for Halloween on Friday, October 27 in the Charlie Chaplin Auditorium. The lunch was attended by over twenty students who have come from different parts of the world to study at SAC. Currently St. Augustine College has international students from Italy, Venezuela, Colombia, Brazil, Nepal, Peru, Tanzania, Congo, Mongolia, Mexico, India, Argentina and Bolivia.
At the lunch, Dr. Bruno Bondavalli, interim president of SAC, recognized the efforts of these students to attain a career away from their families. “I know, by my own experience, what it means to study far
from home, because I came from Venezuela many years ago pursuing the American dream,” he said, his touching declaration applauded by the students.
Dr. Bondavalli reminded them that St. Augustine College has a long tradition of serving students from different countries, and appreciated their choice for their education. “I want to remind you that we are here to help you; do not hesitate to visit my office at the time you need support,” he said.
Then Dr. Bondavalli presented the new International Students Club, while praising this initiative whose mission is to promote the integration of international students to the institution in order to support their academic and cultural adaptation as well as to promote such principles and values as inclusion and friendship, identity and cultural diversity, ethical and academic development.
The brand new International Student Club has as its president Silvia E. Loza who is from Bolivia and began her studies at St. Augustine College in January 2014, obtaining on December 2015 her Associate in Child Development; she then continued her studies in SAC and in December 2016 she graduated with a degree in Psychology.
Her brother Gustavo Loza, who obtained a degree of Associate in Computer Information Systems with a concentration in Programming and Technical Support at St. Augustine College, and now continues to study for a degree in Computer Information Systems, is also in the Club’s Board of Directors.
Another member of the board is Johanna Barrientos, from Venezuela, who is in her last semester of her Associate in Respiratory Therapy. The appointment of Minerva Montemayor, who comes from Mexico and studies a degree in Psychology, to the Board was also announced at the luncheon.
Other students who also committed to help are Priscila Víctor from Costa Rica, who is studying a degree in Social Work; Rosa Talcase who came from Peru and studied an Associate in Culinary Arts; and María Orellana from Guatemala who is studying an Associate in Respiratory Therapy.
BY EDUARDO ALEGRIA
ENGLISH VERSION EDITED BY ALEJANDRO RIERA