Source: Lewis University
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Lewis University: The ultimate home away from home

The ideal university exists. Just ask Meiping Liu and Anusha Jakkidi who have come a long way from their homes in China and India to study at Lewis University.

Liu, the BS Computer Engineering student and Jakkidi, the MS Project Management (MPSM) student both chose their programmes at Lewis for their reputation and accreditations. Having studied in Boston prior, Liu was looking for a school with a good reputation and prestige that fit her. “Lewis has a good ranking and the engineering major is ABET-accredited which is very important in my future,” she says. 

Jakkidi sought a programme that offered the PMP certification. Lewis University is one of the universities that offer them. “In my field [of project management], the PMP certification is very important. It is recognised all over the world, but only a few universities offer it. Lewis had everything I was looking for,” she says.  

So does the US. “I choose to study in the US because of the job placement potential because it will help me to advance my career as a project manager.” 

Despite being international students hailing from different countries, both Liu and Jakkidi had the university’s support even before arriving in the country. From admissions to pre-departure briefings, they never felt alone throughout their application process. Held and guidance are available to all every step of the way. 

Unlike other schools that were unresponsive to emails and calls, Liu never encountered such situations with the Lewis admissions office. “The admissions office was very helpful. My admission counsellor would return my emails immediately, and I could talk to him whenever I needed,” she says. 

With counsellors available in selective cities in India, support was also easily within reach for Jakkidi. “I could call them directly with any questions that I had about preparing for my visa interview. They also offered a pre-departure orientation before I left for the US. I met many other new students there and we travelled to Chicago together,” shares the master’s student.

Both Liu and Jakkidi were able to quickly adapt into their new community and 410-acre arboretum campus. This is thanks to the help of advisors and events around campus which allowed them to be familiar with important parts of the school. Lewis organised events such as New Student Orientation which helps international students adjust to their new life in the US and a one-on-one session with their advisors a week before classes to help them decide on their classes for the semester. 

Such events helped them settle in quickly. “I got to meet other new students and attend social events to help us learn more about the university,” says Liu. Jakkidi felt as if she was “part of a big celebration and welcome party for all of the new students.” 

“There are many Indian students at Lewis who help you get settled. The university has a student mentor, who meets you when you arrive at school for the first time. The mentor will help you around campus, and show you important things. This was like having a new friend,” Jakkidi says.

Source: Lewis University

Source: Lewis University

For international students whose first language isn’t English, they can take advantage of the Writing Centre’s free English language tutoring and services. The centre helps students review essays and projects, correct language mistakes and even schedule conversations to help improve communications skills.

Liu was among the students who benefited greatly from it. “My English was not so strong in my first semester. I was shy and didn’t know how to improve. At Lewis, they have English tutors, it’s a free service, and you go to the café for tea or coffee and just have a friendly conversation. [Because of it], I was able to get more confidence in speaking and improving my English.”

At Lewis, graduate outcomes are nothing less than impressive. The stats show students are employable and highly sought after — 96% of 2021 graduates with a bachelor’s degree were employed and/or attending graduate school

All 6,500 students across the levels of study have equal access to internship opportunities and faculty connections with global companies within the Fortune 500 such as American Express, Amazon, JPMorgan Chase and many more.

As both Liu and Jakkidi’s chosen programmes are STEM degrees, they can apply to work in the US for up to three years under the Optional Practical Training (OPT). The university’s location in Chicago offers them many work opportunities. 

Liu, who’s currently working in a Chicago suburb as a software enginee,r “plans to remain with this company for as long as my visa will permit.” The same can be said for Jakkidi who graduated just a month ago. 

“I am searching for a new employer. My OPT has been approved, and I have a few months remaining to find a job. Chicago has many companies with open PMP jobs, and I know I have good experience. So I am confident that I will find a job quickly.”

Inspired by their journey? You can be the next international student success story at Lewis University. Click here for more information. 

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