The International Student Experience at WPI

The International Student Experience at WPI

August 23, 2019 2 By Stanley Isaacs


(speaking various different languages) So welcome to WPI, Worcester Polytechnic Institute. We’re a small STEM institution located in
Worcester, Massachusetts, about an hour away from Boston. We have about 4,300 undergraduate students,
11% of those are international students. You’re surrounded by a vibrant community
of students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math. My favorite thing about WPI is I get to be
part of an all-inclusive community that’s super warm. I get to be a really studious student, but
I’m still able to collaborate with my peers. WPI definitely caught my interest due to the
fact that it’s a smaller school, and therefore I knew I’d get a lot more attention from
teachers towards me. The teachers are very good. You have very good student to teacher relationships. Any time I need any help in anything, really,
I can really rely on the teachers. Instead of semesters like every other university
we have terms, and we have 4 terms each year, each 7 weeks in length where we take 3 courses. With the term-based system at WPI you learn
so much in just 7 weeks, so what other people are learning in 14 weeks you’re only learning
it in 7 weeks. So if you’re a person that likes to learn
a lot and you get bored easily, that would be the perfect fit for you. One of my favorite things about WPI is the
project-based learning we have here. The majority of my classes we do group projects,
and I feel like we have a chance to develop our skills a lot. One of the things that I love about WPI is
that, it’s like you’re not just learning theory everywhere. Professors they teach you, you know, what
you need to know, and then they’re like OK here’s a project, apply it. I chose WPI because it’s, most of all, a
global school. In your junior year you’re going to do your
interactive qualifying project [IQP]. Over 50% of the WPI students complete it outside
of the United States, and that’s one of the great advantages. I’ll be doing mine in Greece. I did my IQP in Denmark. I went to Morocco this past C-Term I went to China for my IQP and I worked with a biotech company I’m going to do my IQP in Bangkok, Thailand WPI gave me the opportunity to pursue everything
that I was passionate about. With the flexible curriculum, its holistic
approach to engineering and world problem-solving, as well as being able to pursue my passions
in music, in culture, and being able to travel the world, I found everything that I was passionate
about here. My favorite thing about WPI is definitely
how much of a community there is, how your friends and your peers, they feel like family. WPI is so diverse that like, you always feel
that you’re accepted, and you can always find a lot of people who have the same situation
as you. There’s more than 200 clubs on campus, ranging
from religious organizations to cultural clubs. Whether it is that you’re interested in
art, sports, or even just want to simply develop yourself as a professional, there’s definitely
a club out there for you, and even if there isn’t, you can always start it. I just really like the campus. When I looked at the pictures I was just like,
this is a very pretty campus, like very traditional, very New England campus. And I really was drawn to that. At WPI I feel like there’s always someone
there to help you in all aspects of life. So for example, if you need help with your
I-20 or your Visa status there’s always the International House you can go to. If you’re feeling down or you’re missing
home, you can always go to the SDCC and there’s always going to be someone there to help. And I also use the Career Development Center,
or the CDC. They help critique your resume or you can
go in for mock interviews. They’re a very helpful resource if you want
to learn more about companies and any opportunities that come on campus
And even for freshmen, you can apply for volunteer work for professors in the lab. And either during summer or academic year,
you will always get plenty of opportunities. Many international students at WPI have had
the opportunity to work for some amazing companies. Anywhere from Google, to Facebook, Microsoft
or Tesla. There’s always opportunities for our students
to take their dream job. I know that internationally a lot of people
look at rankings and like, it’s all about like the big-name schools, but you also got
to understand that going to a school is your own choice and has to be like a personal choice
that you make. There are a lot of schools in the United States
that are like hidden gems that only people here know of. But if you do like a lot of research I’m
sure you’ll be able to find a school that’s the best fit for you. Coming to a different country I feel like
it’s a very scary thing, mostly for internationals, because you face a lot of culture shock and
there are a lot of things that are different from your home country. But the advice that I would give to most of
internationals is to overcome that fear, because once you come here, you get to meet a lot
of people from different cultures, from different backgrounds, and you feel like a family. WPI is like a home to me. When you come to WPI, don’t be afraid to
ask for help. A lot of students come in and you’re not
used to going to tutoring sessions and like you don’t view it as like a cool thing to
do, but I would really advise you to take advantage of the different opportunities that
WPI offers. If you decide to come to WPI which I really,
really hope you do, always take all the chances you’re given. So for example, I’m trying to get my Master’s
in Engineering in four years and I’m going for it because why not? So, there’s a lot of opportunities at WPI
and just try to get all of them or most of them if you are able to. If you want a school that makes you a better student, person, and employee, WPI
is the school for you. (speaking various different languages)