By Ramisha Farooq
A group of about 100 international graduate students at Ryerson gathered at an annual reception to applaud their peers for their personal and academic achievements on Friday.
International Student Services organized the event to help its members settle in to university life.
“We wanted to create a moment for them where they are recognized as a unique student population,” said Diana Ning, the International Students Services coordinator.
The mix-and-mingle style of the reception, says Ning, was designed so that students were able to share their challenges with other members of their own community.
“They are mature students and they have families. As a father with a newborn back in Iran, you are lonely. We want to ease the loneliness by creating a community circle,” she said.
International Student Services provides assistance to these grads through services for their Visa issues, financial stress, accommodation problems, health and safety changes and adjustment to a new academic culture.
Vangjel Pano, a second-year master’s student from Greece, studying aerospace engineering, is pleased with the services he has been provided as an international student but feels they can do more.
“Make International Student Services bigger, it’s a small department right now,” Pano said.
“Their ability to support us depends on the size of the department.” This year Ryerson has students originating from more than 140 countries.
“Our mission is to support them in the Ryerson community,” says Ning.