By Leticia dos Santos
After one year without an international club, COD students decided to work together, so other students could have the chance to meet new people and make new friends. Students are officially restarting the international club at the College of the Desert in the fall 2015
Club President Vinicius Rocha explains, “our main goal is to provide everyone the opportunity to have an international experience without having to leave the country. It is to share our culture, make friends, and have fun. It is designed to make our community more interesting and more international.”
There are six officers in charge of the activities of the club: President, Vice-President, Secretary/Treasury, Historian, and two Inter Club Council representatives. The officers are current international and American students. To participate in the club, students must sign in at the international office in the Cravens Student Services Center, 2nd floor. The members must go to the meetings where activities and ideas are discussed. “International students came to America to learn not just the language, but also the culture of this country. American students are more than welcome to join because the club is about an international experience, it includes everyone from every country that studies at the College of the Desert,” Rocha explained. There are currently five American citizens in the club.
The meetings will be held at lunch time at least once a month. Food will be provided by the club. The club is organizing a volleyball game and barbecue for early October. The location of the meetings will be decided after Club Rush.
Marlene Schneider, a student from Germany, explained why it is so difficult to make friends in college, “it is hard to make friends because I am only in the college for classes and I usually sit next to different people every time.” About what she expects from the club she said, “I want to meet more international students because they have the same challenges I have.”
Juyeong Park, is also a member of the club. She was originally from Korea then moved to Japan with her mother. Juyeong says, “I want to meet new people and make friends. I am looking forward to going on a trip with the club. There are many students from different countries, so I can learn a little bit about their culture.”
Time is crucial for college students, so the club gives students the chance to meet new people from different cultures. “We have to conciliate work, study, and social life. We are surrounded by people who have a lot to share and a lot to learn. This is where the club takes place. We just want to connect people and give them the chance to appreciate one another,” Rocha says.
Being part of a club can also help students who want to transfer to a four-year university. “Universities want people who are not average, they want people who have something different, they want people with wide experience and knowledge. Being part of a club not only makes your transcript look better, but also makes you more complete as a student, and as a person.” Rocha says, “This is what students can get in this club. They can have a lifetime experience that will enrich themselves not just as a student, but also as an individual.”