Does your name have special meaning? My name is an Arabic name. It means all the good things about it.
Hometown: Jdeidet Marjeyoun (Lebanon)
Major: Civil Engineering
Class Year: Junior
Tell us about yourself: I have an older sister, and I love to swim and travel. I chose to major in Civil Engineering because it was important to me to make my father proud. I want to be just like him – we have a very special relationship. Also, I have a lot of family members in engineering. Plus, I wanted to pursue a challenging track.
Why did you choose to come to CBU? I wanted to come to the U.S. to study and learn how to be independent. My father and my uncles studied at the University of Memphis. My father suggested I apply to his alma mater, but I told him I prefer a much smaller university. CBU was a better fit for me and my goals. CBU has an excellent engineering program, and the environment here makes me feel very comfortable.
What advice do you have for new international students to help them adjust to life in the U.S.? My advice for new international students would be to try and live on campus, at least your first year. You won’t feel so alone, and you will make friends quickly. Leaving my family and friends behind was not an easy choice, but I learned so much about American and other cultures as well. The U.S. is very diverse — it’s a huge melting pot.
If CBU students visited Lebanon, where should they go and why? First, they should go to Baalbek (pictured above) because it’s one of the largest and most noble Roman temples ever built. Second, they should go to Cedars so they can see the beautiful trees (The cedar is in the Lebanese flag). Third, Lebanon is a Christian city, and we have a lot of Christian places. Fourth, go to Beirut — the nightlife is fantastic. And lastly, they should visit Marjeyoun (my country); you can see the borders and Israel.
What is your favorite restaurant in Memphis? And why? My favorite restaurant in Memphis is Central Barbecue because I love steaks and pork. Macaroni and cheese is my favorite side dish.
Is there anything else the CBU campus community needs to know about you or your culture? I often get asked by students and faculty who are curious about my religious background. They assume that I am Muslim because my home is in the Middle East, but I am Christian. Most of the citizens in Lebanon are Christian. Here is a fun fact: The cedar of Lebanon is mentioned 77 times in the Bible (refer to Psalms 92:12). We have a large Catholic population as well. Also, the universities in Lebanon don’t have fall or spring break. They take 40 days off for Christmas and 20 days off for Easter.
If anyone wants to nominate a student for the Spotlight or if a student is interested in being in the Spotlight, they can email Stephanie Mathis, International Student Services Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow International Student Services on Instagram (@cbu_iss), Facebook (search for @issacadserv), and Twitter (@CBU_ISS)!
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