By Song My Hoang
Ly Nguyen ’17 is from Warsaw, Poland, where she attended the High School of IB — Ingmar Berman.
She discovered Union through her sister, who was a 2014 graduate. “My sister told me about the interesting academic curriculum at Union as well as term abroad programs,” she noted.
She is currently pursuing a bioengineering major with a potential minor in psychology.
She wanted to study bioengineering because she heard that Union has a very strong engineering program.
Nguyen continued, “I loved picking a wide range of courses last year. I took engineering, math, biology, chemistry and other general requirement courses. It was fun!”
Nguyen also loves a variety of professors at Union. She said that her favorite professors span different fields.
She loves mathematics Professor William Zwicker, psychology Professor Kenneth DeBono, Chemistry Professor Laurie Tyler and many more. She loves the personal interaction she has with different professors.
She shared that she is trilingual and her accent is a mixture of Vietnamese, Polish and English. Also, she mentioned that people usually think she looks older than her sister.
Marko Manevski ’18 comes from Bitola, Macedonia. He attended the High School of Medicine — Dr. Jovan Kalauzi. He plans to pursue a biology major and a philosophy minor on the pre-medical track.
He said that the American education system is completely different than the one in Southeast Europe.
Manevski commented, “I love the liberal-arts education here. I get a high-quality education in the sciences as well as other areas of study. The small classroom sizes really foster a good learning environment because I get attention from all my professors,” he elaborated.
He decided to attend Union because he fell in love with the beautiful campus.
Manevski said, “I actually did a virtual tour. I was on a video Skype call with a Union student and he showed me around campus through webcam!”
Manevski wanted to add that he loves Union because it provides a balance between a rigorous academic curriculum and a fun social scene.
He continued, “Everybody is so nice and I haven’t disliked anything so far. I’m not a picky eater, so I actually like most of the food here.”
He said he is genuinely excited for what Union has to offer.
Lam Vo ’17 is a native of Hanoi, Vietnam, where he attended the Amsterdam High School for the Gifted with a specialization in chemistry. He decided to apply to U.S. colleges because he knew many upperclassmen that went abroad to the U.S.
He noted, “All my friends were very talented. I found that the U.S. education system helped my friends realize their full potential. I viewed the upperclassmen as my role models, so I decided to go to the U.S.”
Vo said that Union appealed to him because of its strength in undergraduate research.
He is pursuing a biochemistry major because he wants to focus on the real-life, practical application of research. He is conducting research with chemistry Professor James Adrian. He completed four weeks of research last summer and is continuing research for the next two terms.
“Adrian’s lab is my dream come true. I have everything I need for my research and he is a great instructor. He’s very open to new ideas and directions,” Vo stated.
His favorite class at Union was his Scholar Research Seminar with Associate Professor of History Joyce Madancy, where he studied the history of drugs such as opium, marijuana, LSD and other hallucinogens.
Although it was a history-focused class, Vo said that he was still able to add some biochemistry into his final paper. He noted, “Professor Madancy did not give a lot of homework or reading assignments, though she is a very smart professor and I learned a lot in the class.”
He loves that he can join any clubs without worrying about being knowledgeable in that particular area. Vo said that the great culture shock he experienced was that people here are very nice.
“Everyone can say hi to you, even if you don’t know who they are. In Vietnam, we won’t greet the person unless we know that person well,” he concluded.