Good afternoon folks. We return to you again from the Office of Student Affairs second floor desk (well, actually I’m on my break from Greek class, but who;s keeping tabs). Today we’ve got an interview with Chingboi, who is one of our recruitment representatives here. She is also one of our international students. One thing we’re working on here at the McBlog headquarters, is to get more international students and commuter students on the blog. Both groups make up a large portion of our student body, and we’re incredibly proud of them and want them to get a chance to speak up. So, without further ado, here’s Chingboi!
Chingboi Guite (Actually my full name is longer than that–Ngaimuanching Guite. “Chingboi” comes from the last part of my full name, “Ching”, and “Boi” is a term of endearment).
Tell us about yourself (where are you from, where did you go to school, anything else interesting)
I am from India, from the northeast part of India, a small beautiful state called Manipur. I grew up and did all my studies until college in Imphal, the capital city (town?) of Manipur. I finished my undergraduate (B.Sc. in Zoology) in Imphal and then went to Japan to study theology. More precisely, in Japan I was studying Liberal Arts, majoring in Theology. I studied at Tokyo Christian University, which is one of the very very few (if not only) christian university in Japan that offers programs in English.
Anything else interesting…hmm…I guess the fact that nobody would ever guess that I am from India in the first meeting. I am always mistaken for a Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Thai, etc, but never as an Indian (northeast Indian). I think that’s an interesting experience I have wherever I go
What degree are you working on and why did you choose McCormick?
I am in my last semester of the Master of Theological Studies (MTS) program. I chose McCormick because it is unique and different from any typical seminary, and I wanted to be in a place where I will have more opportunities to learn through actual experiences and not just through books or lectures.
Can you tell us about your role as an international student?
An international student. Well, there are “advantages” and not so “advantageous” about being an international student. By advantage I mean that I/we are easily noticed, got others’ attention and people are ready to see and be helpful to us in areas we need, which I truly appreciate. On the other hand, you are at a place where you never grew up and many things you just face them and pick up along the way, and many times you are just not sure how to do. Other times it just takes time and energy and perseverance, if you would, to get “used to” and “master” some things. Sometimes you don’t do well, other times, you do fine.
So, I my role as an international student is to continue to try to bridge between the two–of being noticed easily (in a good sense) and the struggle to fit in or do well (which is sometimes just the reality even when you are surrounded by people very open and willing to help).
What about your role on session, who do you represent and what does your group do?
On session, I represent Global Community, a student group started at the beginning of last year. Global Community is a group that is primarily run with the initiative of McCormick international students but includes everyone in the McCormick community and even friends outside the McCormick community. Perhaps I should mention a little bit here how Global Community got started. I was on session last year as one of the representatives of Junior class. As I mentioned above, I represent my class yet at the same time, obviously I’m an international student, so when in the session there are questions and concerns about international students, they will naturally be directed to me. I saw that session, and McCormick as a whole has interests in their international students yet there are no proper channel that such communication can occur, except for individual levels. That helped me think that we need a group that will provide a platform for international students to participate and contribute more to the larger community, and at the same time for the larger community to be able to attend and helpful to the concerns and needs of the international students.
Last year Global Community organized a graduation party for international graduates. In the beginning of this academic year, we organized a welcome party for incoming students, and organized a winter retreat early this year. At present we are working on leading the community worship on April 6, to reflect the global community of McCormick and to enable the whole community to participate in a global worship. Besides these kinds of events, we address concerns of international students and serve as channel for communication between international students and Administration. And I think that since it started Global Community is well accepted and it is functioning very well to serve its purpose.
What is something that has surprised you about McCormick?
To be honest, I have been surprised by many things in McCormick. I come from evangelical background, fairly conservative, and I can say that this is the first time I am really exposed to the world outside of me. But, I am amazed at and admire how McCormick continues to hold its commitment to treasure and nourish differences, welcoming everyone and building everyone up.
What is something that you hope for McCormick, maybe something that you would like to see happen.
Again, I have to speak as an international student. I would really love to see an even more international/global community than we have now. I understand that finances come into play for this (since most international applicants trying to come to McCormick need financial help), but that is the wish and hope I have for our community.
Do you have any advice for prospective students looking at McCormick or any incoming students?
Advice…hmm…I would say, meet all the processes and datelines but do not hesitate to ask. I know that, from the time I was applying, and now working in the Admissions dept, the department is very very open and always ready to help in anything that a prospective student or applicant need.
To incoming students…I would say, please “watch out” because if you don’t, you will miss a lot of blessings that are waiting for you here.
Thanks again for the interview Chingboi!
Until next time!
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