International Students

“UnSeen” Field trip to the National Portrait Gallery

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IMG_20180412_135650372EAP 500; Advanced English for Academic Purposes, is one of the most important base classes designed solely for the international students at Hood College. Taught by Dr. Donald Wright, Associate Professor of French and Arabic, Director of Middle Eastern Studies and Chair of Global Languages and Cultures Department, the course has been developed to strengthen English language skills of international students, who come to Hood with varied language and career backgrounds. Dr. Wright believes this class is useful for most international students, and he has created meaningful writing assignments that deal with current events and are based in American culture.

IMG_20180412_133356866Like many classes at Hood, EAP 500 reaches beyond the walls of the classroom, as Dr. Wright and the class recently visited The National Portrait Gallery. They toured and viewed the exhibit UnSeen, which “highlights the work of two leading contemporary artists who grapple with the under- and misrepresentation of certain minorities in portraiture and American history.” Each student had to select a portrait from the exhibit, explain why they picked it, how it spoke to them and what it’s historical or cultural significance was. Back in class, students will continue their discussion about the portraits and will write the biographies of the subjects as part of their assignment. Dr. Wright thought the field trip and exhibition were fantastic and would recommend it to everyone. “We were lucky, we only set off the alarm once and got into an argument a two or three times maybe (about actual ideas – which is a good thing of course)”, he added jokingly.

IMG_20180412_134849194The class and these kind of entertaining field trips are a few of the many opportunities offered to our international students. All are designed to get to know American culture better, while learning and strengthening their English proficiency. And the fun they get by doing it is a bonus!

Hood Community Celebrates Diwali

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041The Hood College community goes beyond just academics – we love to celebrate our students, our diversity, and give everyone a chance to share their culture and explore others. Hood students from India and Nepal recently organized a celebration of Diwali, the festival of light celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains across the globe. The holiday, which coincides with Hindu New Year, is a celebration of new beginnings and the triumph of light over darkness.

At Hood, we are proud of our diverse student body, and thrilled that students were able to plan and organize this celebration. It was important to our organizers that the people who attended were both those who normally celebrate Diwali and people from many other cultures. As Elyas Abubakr, Hood’s Primary Designated School Officer and one of the organizers, explained “It gave us an opportunity to tell [international] students we value your presence here and we appreciate you as part of the Hood community. You have a family here. The Hood community is your home away from home. It [also] drew a new bridge between domestic and international students at Hood College.”

The celebration featured traditional rass-garba dance, madal drum performances, live music, rangoli paintings, and Indian food. Rangoli paintings are traditional artwork done for Hindu holidays and festivals, featuring symbolic shapes and curved lines. For our celebration, attendees created images on campus walkways using chalk. Inside, both experienced dancers and people learning these dances for the first time had a great time! Experience some of the music and dance in this clip! You will see student Chiranjibi Ghimire playing the traditional madal drums. As a celebrant, organizer, and a performer, Chiranjibi is one of those for whom this event was both supportive and personal. As he explains, “The Diwali celebration is the one of the way we can maintain our home culture and introduce our different culture to an American friends and community. Obviously, international students are very happy and pleased to the Hood College to helping and sponsoring events like Diwali.” We can’t wait for next year!

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Organizing and Celebrating Saudi Arabia National Day

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IMG_20170923_184031468 The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia hosted a celebration of Saudi Arabia’s 87th National Day on September 28th. The celebration was held at the National Building Museum, which was completely decorated in green for the occasion. Mohammed Alyahyawi, a Hood College Graduate Student in Computer Science, was part of the organizing team. Mohammed heard of the event and was interested, so he sent his CV to the Embassy and was invited to assist in organizing the notable gathering.
According to Mohammed, the event hosted over 5000 people and was a representation of Saudi food, drinks, dances and traditions, presented for people of all nationalities. Guests also enjoyed a virtual reality boot, which offered a visual experience and hands-on look into Saudi society. The government’s Vision 2030 project was also presented along with the Kingdom’s potential future plans.

A Path to English Proficiency for International Students

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qweryuuOne of the best ways for Hood College’s international students to perfect their English, besides conversing with their friends and colleagues, is to enroll in EAP 500; Advanced English for Academic Purposes. Professor Donald Wright, who is teaching the course during the fall, 2017 semester, says: “It is a course of English as a second language, in which students learn reading, writing and oral language skills; many international students tend to be more advanced at listening and speaking so the course focuses more on grammar and proper writing for future professional success.” Wright emphasizes that the course is designed so students can discuss different areas of interest that may be useful for them in various fields. The class is divided into several topics, including creating and writing a CV and cover letter, practicing reported speech in an essay about a faculty member, discussing controversial topics and using persuasive speech.

IMG_20171016_145123485 While the class is designed solely for international students, not all are required to take it. It is offered for those who want to strengthen their language skills, and students in a variety of academic programs are mixed together. Dr. Wright believes this class is useful for most international students as the writing assignments are meaningful since they deal with current events and are based in American culture.Like many other classes at Hood, this class reaches beyond the walls of the classroom, as Dr. Wright and the class recently visited the Museum of Civil War Medicine in downtown Frederick. “To coordinate with the field trip we are talking about medical innovations.” The students will then write a proposal outlining the problems of the opioid addiction in the US today and present hypothetical solutions, enabling them to connect theoretical knowledge with their field experience.”

CPT/OPT Information Session

Posted by | Biomedical Science, Business Administration, Computer Science, Environmental Biology, Graduate School Highlights, Information Technology, International Students, Management of Information Technology | No Comments

IMG_20161003_153242Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and Optional Practical Training (OPT) are two important components of the academic experience for most F1 international students.  These programs allow students to gain valuable experience and earn money while working on or off campus during the academic year (CPT) or during the summer (OPT).  As part of the Graduate School’s efforts to empower students with resources that will contribute towards a successful graduate experience, an information session was held recently in partnership with the International Student Services Office and the Career Center.

This event provided an overview of the CPT/OPT process and also provided the opportunity for students to ask questions and receive immediate answers from Dr. Kiran Chadda, Director of International Student Services, Dean of the Graduate School, Dr. April Boulton and Lana Veres  of the Career Center.

The presentations covered areas such as employment options available to F1 international students, procedures for obtaining employment authorization, late stage CPT and internships as well a demo of the GoinGlobal website for job search. Students were also treated to pizza and drinks.

To view the resources shared at the session, visit this link.

Apply Now for New Doctoral Program

Posted by | Accounting, Bioinformatics, Biomedical Science, Business Administration, Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Leadership, Financial Management, Graduate School Highlights, Information Technology, International Students, Management of Information Technology, Organizational Management | No Comments

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Hood College is now accepting applications for a new organizational leadership doctoral program. The 60-credit, three-year experience leads to a choice of two degrees: (1) Doctorate of Organizational Leadership (DOL) – For those in public and private education, the non-profit sector, training and development, government or military. (2) Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) – For those employed in business and industry who hold business and related graduate degrees.

The multidisciplinary program is structured by cohort. Both DOL and DBA candidates advance together through core and research courses. They then begin to differentiate their degree pursuit—DOL or DBA—by specializing in business, psychology and counseling or education courses. Finally, they complete their capstone work.

Classes are held on the college’s Frederick, Md., campus on a schedule that accommodates working professionals. The application period for the first cohort closes May 15, 2016. Learn more.

Meet Program Directors at Virtual Open Houses

Posted by | Bioinformatics, Biomedical Science, Business Administration, Cybersecurity, Environmental Biology, Geographic Information Systems, Graduate School Highlights, Information Technology, International Students, Management of Information Technology | No Comments

Can’t make it to campus but want to talk with top faculty about Graduate School programs?  Six virtual open houses in November 2015 provide online opportunities to do just that.

Meet directors of the Biomedical Science, Environmental Biology, MBA, Management of Information Technology and Information Technology masters programs and the GIS and Cybersecurity certificate programs. Ask questions and get answers straight from the source. Go to the Visit Us page to register for your choice of sessions.

Grad Student’s Internship Leads to Bioinformatics Job

Posted by | Bioinformatics, Biomedical Science, Computer Science, Cybersecurity, Graduate School Highlights, International Students | No Comments
Danny Watson

Danny Watson

Daniel Watson, who proudly hails from “the tropical paradise of Barbados in the Caribbean,” discovered the Graduate School by way of his cousin, a past international undergraduate student who “highly recommended me to apply because of her very positive experience.”

While working toward his master’s degree in Computer Science, Danny was selected for appointment to the Student Research Participation Program at the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) at Fort Detrick. The CPT (Curricular Practical Training) internship working with the bioinformatics team will lead to a position after he graduates in December 2015 as a bioinformatics analyst, a role in which he will continue develop new technologies for the analysis and interactive visualization of biomedical and genomic data.

Danny gives much credit for this career-launching opportunity to Dr. Xinlian Liu—his “primary mentor” and instructor in operating system design and algorithms —as well as Hood’s relationship with Fort Detrick’s Advanced Biomedical Computing Center. Professors George Dimitoglou and Ahmed Salem are among other “major influences” at the Graduate School.

Danny was delighted to “give back to the Hood College community” through a workship at Hood’s Center for Academic Achievement and Retention.

Happy Diwali at Hood

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group shotCandlelight, vibrantly colored attire and even dancing transformed Hood’s Multicultural suite on October 29 as students, staff and faculty celebrated Diwali.

The purpose of Hood’s inaugural Diwali was to share the meaning of the celebration — a triumph of good over evil — and to cross cultures with similar festivals that are traditional in other parts of the world. According to Natalia Trullson, graduate assistant in the office of Multicultural Affairs & International Student  Programs and one of the Diwali planners, “We shared fun and learning experiences…and at the end we even had a dance party to some of the Indian students’ favorite Bollywood songs.”

Although Diwali is India’s most significant holiday, it is celebrated globally by many cultures.

Welcome Receptions: U.S. and Nine Other Nations Represented

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Graduate School faculty and staff welcomed new students at two receptions on August 20. The International Students Orientation was attended by students from nine nations: Saudi Arabia, Ghana, China, Nepal, Afghanistan, Egypt, India, Nigeria and Spain. Both receptions offered an opportunity for newcomers to network with each other, meet faculty members, become familiar with the campus and generally get more comfortable with their new learning environment and its surroundings — plus take a few selfies!

Ahmed and new students