Pirates cross seas for their studies

Seton Hall has a wide array of students from across the globe ranging from Israel to Brazil. Many students come from exchange programs, while others simply move to the United States to follow in their families’ footsteps. SHU has extended its roots by accepting students from different countries, diversifying the student body.

Gabriel Viola, a junior business major, is an international student from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Viola spent a year and half at Iowa Western Community College before transferring to Seton Hall in 2017 to be a part of the men’s soccer program.

Gabriel Viola, originally from Brazil, came to SHU to join the men’s soccer team.
Photo via SHU Athletics

Viola explained that attending school in Iowa helped him become more accustomed to the U.S. and strengthen his English. Viola said that he wants to graduate from Seton Hall because the school offers a fantastic business program and an amazing education program.
However, Viola said that he occasionally gets homesick.

“I have been doing this since I was a kid,” Viola said. “I’ve grown accustomed to traveling and seeing my family on occasions, but I will always miss them.”

Viola said he combats being homesick by calling his family and visiting them in Brazil when he has time. He is set to graduate from Seton Hall in spring 2019.

Some international students feel that school in the U.S. is widely different from other countries. Talon Manfrendini is a senior mathmatical finance and ITM major. He is originally from Bedonia, Italy in the Northern Province of Parma, known for producing parmesan cheese. He moved to the United States during his senior year of high school.

Manfrendini explained that the school systems between the two countries are very different.

“By the time you’re entering high school in Italy, you already have an idea of what you want to be when you’re older,” he said. “I was going to high school to be an aviator.”

Manfrendini said he remembered when he was younger, he would come to America to visit his grandfather. The two of them would tour his grandfather’s alma mater, Seton Hall.

Manfrendini’s grandfather would take him to basketball games, which encouraged his decision to attend a university in the U.S. Manfrendini explained that, although he gets homesick, he is fortunate to go back to Italy every summer and regularly see his family.

Though a lot of international students come to SHU, some of the University’s American students travel abroad, as well to other schools. Aurora Arrington, a junior philosophy major, will be spending her senior year in Ireland.

Aurora will be studying at University College of Cork and taking 23 credits throughout her two semesters. Arrington will not come back to the U.S. until May 2019, when she will walk for graduation.

She said that she will not see her family at all. Although, she said she is excited to be gone for a year, she explained that she will feel homesick in the beginning. She added that she will try to combat these feelings by calling her mom a lot.

“I’m excited for the new experience,” Arrington said. “I think it is very important to study abroad when you’re young, it opens up people to new cultures and experiences.”

Zoey Dotson can be reached at zoey.dotson@student.shu.edu.


Author: Staff Writer

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