John Jay College’s international students received a warm welcome from President Jeremy Travis in an inaugural reception held in his office on Monday, December 10. The reception was attended by 40 international students who hailed from 26 different countries as well as members of the faculty and administration. John Jay currently has 163 international students from 47 different countries. President Travis spoke with the students about their majors and career interests, and he listened to their stories of how they discovered John Jay before he addressed the students.
“I have a particular vision for John Jay as an international institution and talking to many of you tonight about how you found your way to John Jay was very gratifying--to see you’re on a personal journey, a personal quest. What is particularly gratifying…is that you have found that this institution is meeting your hopes and your dreams and that the things you want to study are available here,” Travis said.
Subsequent to introducing faculty and administrators, President Travis asked the students to state their names, their home countries, their areas of study, and he asked them to identify the most significant, impactful aspects of John Jay.
James Williams from Nigeria, a Public Administration major, said that the “most fascinating thing about John Jay is the fact that there are so many resources here to help you succeed and no reason to fail. You have the Writing Center that helps you write papers, you have the Math and Science Resource Center, and you have advisors who will help you figure out what to do with your life.”
Graduate student Ingrid Metton from France is studying International Criminal Justice because she can study topics such as Forensic Psychology which are not available in her country. She is also impressed by John Jay’s knowledgeable and exceptional faculty, “who really know what they are talking about,” said Metton.
Ronan Maguire is a police officer in Ireland, and he is pursuing a Master’s in Criminal Justice, “I’m the envy of the Irish police, they’d all love to be over here as well. The professors and staff are particularly excellent and it’s such a very nice city to have a university in.”
Faculty members from the History Department to Criminal Justice attended the reception to show their support and enthusiasm for John Jay’s international student-community. Associate Professor Itai Sneh in the Department of History and Center on Terrorism said, “They are very hard workers, very dedicated. They’re shocked at how different the system is here. And they’re eager to learn-- they approach everything with a compare-contrast attitude.”
“They’re exceptional,” said Associate Professor Jeff Mellow in Criminal Justice when he talked about the international students who are in his classes.
International students have been contributing to the rich, diverse community at John Jay since 1970. The students are consistently active and interested in participating in the ongoing dialogue within the U.S. on international issues. From November 7– 10, 2012 four of John Jay’s international students attended the One to World Conference held at West Point Military Academy which included a dynamic panel discussion on U.S. foreign policy with Africa.