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Budding student community can thank transfer students for growth

Spring is here, and so is a brand new year starting with a fresh semester. Fresher than the season is the number of students who are joining UH.

The common queries of almost every new student pop up right from the first day they arrive: “How do I get an on- or off-campus job? What are the sources of funding available for me to pay the next semesters?” Laying aside the financial concerns, one of the prime attractions for the students is the location of the University in a city that has the headquarters of major companies that lure them for finding jobs here.

UH students get the best opportunities for value addition to hone their professional development skills by learning to find jobs on campus that brace them for a competitive work environment in the job market.

The International Students and Scholar Services Office orientation for international students was held on the second floor of the M.D. Anderson Memorial Library. According to ISSSO international student counselor Ida Thompson, nearly 180 international students were present, which is less than the number of students who enrolled during the fall.

Nonetheless, the UH community has been growing every year. Students from various backgrounds and nationalities join the University in search of wider exposure for growth and learning opportunities.

Human development and family studies junior Priyank Pillai, a transfer student from Johns Hopkins University, said, “I changed my major after two years from a chemical engineering background to this, because I figured out I was more interested in learning human psychology than solving partial differential equations. The HDFS program at University of Houston is well-renowned and extensive. Although I plan to switch to psychology next semester, I am looking forward to studying this course.”

The newly constructed University Center will definitely turn out to be the highlight this month, with the ribbon-cutting ceremony on Jan. 22 and the grand opening of the theater on Jan. 30. It has certainly turned out to be a hub for students, with its convenient location at the heart of the campus. The new UC Games Room has students flocking to it every day, evident from the long queues and immense crowds.

Since the growth of this UH family is progressive and will continue further, we can expect more events and organizations with innovative ideas that will strengthen community bonding and help in carrying the feeling of UH pride in students. Perhaps if we focused more on raising security alerts and being able to provide a safe campus for students, we could be a more bonded University.

The feeling of helplessness and misery of every student who gets mugged on the streets of the campus or parking lot has to be changed, and they need to feel empathy from fellow Cougars. Once we can successfully build a well-knit UH family who is there for each other in such times, it will be possible to think of a community aimed for collective growth and development.

This issue could be taken up by a student organization to increase awareness and collaborate with the UH Police Department or the Division of Administration and Finance to create a secure campus environment where students can freely move about and live a safer life.

Opinion columnist Aishwarya Gogoi is a petroleum engineering graduate student and may be reached at [email protected]

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