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Spotlights

International students from around the world enjoying their time at Otterbein

International students from around the world enjoying their time at Otterbein


Bronwyn (Ronnie) Buys du Plessis
Age: 19
Traveled from: Dubai, originally from South Africa
Major: Equine Pre-Veterinary/Pre-Graduate Studies

Tell us about your home.
Dubai is a very hot country that reaches over 100 degrees on average. The country is very wealthy due to their selling, importing and exporting oil. I learned to speak English there and that is the main reason I have somewhat of an American accent. South Africa is an amazing country, it is one of the most visually appealing countries in the world for me. I have lived half of my life in South Africa and the other half in Dubai, but South Africa will always be my home.

Why did you choose Otterbein University?
Otterbein was a small university that was the perfect size for me, and the program that it offered was perfect. It allows me to continue riding horses, since I have been riding for more than 14 years. Also, I got to meet my new best friends, Tabby and Rachel, through Otterbein.

What do you think of Otterbein so far?
Otterbein is a very friendly, helpful and professional school. The professors are fantastic and I will definitely be able to learn more from them. There are so many resources here that I can use on this campus to help me.

What are you most excited about, or most looking forward to, during your time here?
I am looking forward to meeting new people, and to have fun with my friends. But, most importantly, I get to study to become a future emergency surgeon for large animals, and to continue to ride horses for many more years to come.


Maya Venkataraman
Age: 18
Traveled from: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Major: Psychology

Tell us about your home.
Malaysia is located in South East Asia, and extremely multi-cultured. There are people from all over the world. The community is easy to be immersed in and inviting to everyone who wants to join. You can get amazing food from local food to American burgers and fries. You see how each culture gets exposed to other cultures and see how everyone finds a home easily.

Why did you choose Otterbein University?
Otterbein is about 30-40 minutes away from where my sister lives, so it's very convenient. Otterbein also offered me a decent scholarship and is a small school. It had everything I was looking for in a college. Although I am Asian, and Singapore is my home, I am an American student, therefore I had better opportunities here in the U.S.

What do you think of Otterbein so far?
I was genuinely surprised by how welcoming the community is in Otterbein and how open everyone is to people from all over the world. It's kind of weird to be one of the few who doesn't know much about an American lifestyle, but everyone has been really good at welcoming me into a new environment.


Lisa Baer
Age: 21
Traveled from: Germany
Major: Business Administration

Tell us about your home.
Originally, I come from a very small town in the southwest of Germany. It's very rural and we are surrounded by great landscape and located right next to the Black Forest.

Why did you choose Otterbein University?
After I graduated high school in 2013, I came to Columbus to work as an Au-Pair for a local host family for one year. During this year I met a lot of new and great people and the Columbus area grew on me. The university in Germany where I already completed three semesters of my study program is rather small, so it's easy to get around on campus and the class sizes are also very reasonable. Since I loved it there, I wanted to have a similar environment for my college experience in the U.S. and Otterbein seemed to be the perfect choice.

What do you think of Otterbein so far?
After one week of classes I can say that there are big differences to universities in Germany, but I am looking forward to meeting those challenges. As an international student, the International Office always helped me and answered all my questions. I feel very welcome here by the staff and the students. 

What are you most excited about, or most looking forward to, during your time here?
I am looking forward to making a lot of new friends here at Otterbein and I really hope that I will be able to further enhance my English skills.


Tomoya Hiroe
Age: 21
Traveled from: Japan
Major: Bridge ESL Program

Tell us about your home.
I was born in Gifu, Japan. My father is an office worker for a trucking company and my mother is a housewife. I grew up in a rural area but the city has a transportation network that is well connected around the area. The city is close to one of the biggest cities in Japan, Nagoya.

Why did you choose Otterbein University?
My university in Japan has some connections to foreign universities and Otterbein is one of them. Tuition is very affordable compared to others, the area has a high standard of public safety and people speak general English.

What do you think of Otterbein so far?
Students are very kind. Many students talk to me and help me understand something when I am puzzled. Every student is eager to study in class and campus facilities are very well equipped to help us learn.


Victor Teles
Age: 33
Traveled from: Brazil
Major: Business Administration

Tell us about your home.
I came from Belem, Brazil, a city in the north with 2.4 million inhabitants. It is the Para state capital. The weather is always hot and very wet. It is a very nice city, with welcoming people.

Why did you choose Otterbein University?
I came to the U.S. to develop my business skills and have an international studying and living experience. Since even before I started my application, people I met from Otterbein made that easy. They have been very attentive and helped me through the entire process, and they are still helping me now.

What do you think of Otterbein so far?
I think I've made the best decision. Otterbein has great faculty, staff and facilities.