With ISA/MuKappa’s International Banquet coming up this Saturday, The Pulse is profiling different international students and missionary kids all week. Read about Jared Armistead, a missionary kid from Pakistan, and check back tomorrow for a new profile.
What does the International Banquet mean to you?
Banquet has been a time to showcase and celebrate the national and ethnic diversity we have on campus, and for those of us who rarely see many of our international friends, a time to catch up and enjoy a wonderful evening.
What’s your favorite part about ISA/MuKappa?
ISA/MuKappa has been a pillar of my time at Messiah. I think that my favorite part of the group that makes up ISAMK has been the close sense of camaraderie that characterizes us. I also live in the Rafiki House, which I suppose has been a significant part of ISAMK, and so that’s a big part of it for me.
What was the transition to Messiah College like for you?
I had a surprisingly easy transition. I lived in the boarding department at my high school for my senior year, and so living in Witmer the year after wasn’t very different. I also already had a strong group of friends that understood and were interested in my international origin story. While the academic time commitment was a significant struggle, I was always able to come to Rafiki and enjoy a movie or some good conversation with my friends.
What do you miss most about the country you are from or the country you grew up in?
Food! I grew up with quality curries, chicken tikka masala and chai. There, it was dirt cheap and cost less than a dollar, while a burger cost about the same as it does here, which was expensive! It’s really strange to come to a place where naan is considered a delicacy and costs a dollar apiece.
What’s one thing you want students to know about international students or MKs at Messiah?
No question is too stupid to ask. Honestly, one of the main reasons we don’t feel comfortable or welcomed into life here is because people don’t ask us about our homes because they don’t know what to say. We really appreciate it when you make the effort to ask, even if you feel ignorant. It makes us feel welcome.