International Student College Juniors Reflect on Their Journeys and Goals at Rowan University

A campus beauty photo showing bright autumn colors on Rowan University's campus.

This story is one within a multi-part series highlighting the aspirations, hopes and dreams of a few of Rowan University’s international students. Read the other stories

Meet rising seniors Aayush Kapri from Nepal, Doménica Gusqui Gavidia from Quito, Ecuador, and Abigail Jones from Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. 

What is your long-term professional goal or dream career?
“Going to graduate school and work as a researcher.” – Aayush Kapri, mathematics major and economics minor from Nepal

“My long-term professional goal is to go to law school and become a lawyer.” – Doménica Gusqui Gavidia, law and justice major from Quito, Ecuador

“My long-term professional career goal is to become an environmental engineer. I hope to remain in America as long as I can to gain as much knowledge and experience in this field. This is so I can return home  to work on creating and being a part of solutions for Trinidad and Tobago’s environmental problems.”  – Abigail Jones, civil and environmental engineering major from Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago

Aayush Kapri sits casually on a rock wall on the campus of Rowan University.
Aayush Kapri

Are you involved in internships, clubs, networking, etc. here at Rowan? If so, please share what they are and how they support your goals. 

“I worked as a research assistant last summer at the University of Pennsylvania. I gained some valuable research skills which can be helpful for going to graduate school as well as got to network with professionals and students from all over the country.” – Aayush Kapri, mathematics major

“I am the undergraduate coordinator of The SHOP, the first food pantry and resource center at Rowan; I am a Peer Referral and Orientation Staff; a Community Assistant; and I am also part of Phi Alpha Delta Honor Society for Pre-Law students. I believe that all these extracurricular activities, community service, and jobs help me develop new skills every day to become a better person. It also helps me create new connections that may be a great help in the future.” – Doménica Gusqui Gavidia, law and justice major

“I work as a peer tutor, and building manager at the student center (SCCA) and I am a new member of the Student Organization of Caribbean Awareness and American Society of Civil Engineers. Being a part of the SCCA has helped me gain new friendships and a sense of belonging at Rowan.”  – Abigail Jones, civil and environmental engineering major

What Rowan professors or Rowan classes have been most helpful and enlightening to you, and how?

“I have taken several hard classes such as Real Analysis 1 and 2 with Professor Hieu Nguyen in the Mathematics Department. I have also worked as his mentee for his research project. He has been very kind and motivating about my professional aspirations.” – Aayush Kapri, mathematics major

“All my professors throughout these two years have been a guide and a help to become excellent in what I do. I remember one of my professors dearly, Dr. Carol Smith, she was my College Composition professor and I remember that all of her classes were full of smiles. She gave me the confidence to speak my mind and stand up for my beliefs; she is a great professor and a great person, too.” – Doménica Gusqui Gavidia, law and justice major

“Last semester I took Environmental Engineering 1 with Dr. Jagadish Torlapati. After I completed this course, I felt even more interested in pursuing my studies in Environmental Engineering. I really appreciated the warmth of his classroom environment. He seemed genuinely interested in getting to know his students.”  – Abigail Jones, civil and environmental engineering major

Law and justice major Domenica Gusqui Gavidia stands outside an academic building on the campus of Rowan University, wearing an oversized maroon cardigan and holding her hand on her hip.
Doménica Gusqui Gavidia

How will this degree support your dreams and goals?

“A degree in mathematics can get you a long way. Mathematics is used in all kinds of research and one of the reasons I am majoring in Math is because of its multidisciplinary nature.” – Aayush Kapri, mathematics major

“I think this degree will help me have a wide knowledge about the law system in the United States, and it will make my transition to law school easier.” Doménica Gusqui Gavidia, law and justice major

“I believe that at the end of this degree, I will have the knowledge and ability to do the FE exam to become a licensed engineer. I also believe that I would be able to do my master’s in environmental engineering with the skills and knowledge that I would have gained during my undergraduate degree.”  – Abigail Jones, civil and environmental engineering major

Could you share your thoughts on the international student community here at Rowan? Were you able to connect with people from home? Meet new friends? How?

“I think there is a big and growing international community at Rowan. I have made many lifelong friends at Rowan. In our culture, we like introducing one another and that’s basically how I met many international people, especially from Nepal, at Rowan. Although I am not involved in cultural clubs on campus, I am sure the clubs are an excellent way to connect with other international students.” – Aayush Kapri, mathematics major

“The international student community is a little bit small but I had the great luck to meet a lot of people. Everyone here is really kind and open-minded! I was able to connect with some people from home with orientation, as an international PROS staff I usually get international students in my groups, and that is how I met some of my friends from back home here. I love to meet and connect with new people and I met most of my friends (internationals/not-internationals) going to different clubs and events, I am part of the international club, and the United Latino association, and most of my friends come from there!” – Doménica Gusqui Gavidia, law and justice major

“Through my on-campus jobs, I was able to connect with other persons from the Caribbean or of Caribbean descent through passing. Because of my thick accent, it makes it a bit easier for fellow students of Caribbean descent, etc to recognize me.”  – Abigail Jones, civil and environmental engineering major

Abigail Jones sits outside at a table on the campus of Rowan University.
Abigail Jones

Why did you choose Rowan?

“One of the reasons I chose Rowan is because of its location. Rowan is located at close proximity from some of the big cities in the USA, and I think that is an important factor while finding jobs and internships.” – Aayush Kapri, mathematics major

“I chose Rowan because I think the programs they offer are great, I loved the campus and I have some family living close to Rowan that talked to me about it and how great the school is, everything just sounded really appealing that I made my decision to come and it was the best thing!” – Doménica Gusqui Gavidia, law and justice major

“I choose Rowan because of the affordability of the tuition, the quality of the engineering program, and great location.” – Abigail Jones, civil and environmental engineering major

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Written by: Jordyn Dauter, junior dance & elementary education double major