International Students Discuss Experiences, Differences Here in U.S.A.


Violet Korpal, Staff Writer, Adv. Journalism

Four of Notre Dame’s international students Zuzana Kankova, Eva Gillet, Anita Mannuzzu and Milana Volkova recently shared how the United States is very different from other countries. 

The students are all from different places around the world, such as Slovakia (Zuzana), France (Eva), Italy (Anita) and Russia (Milana). 

“It is my second time here. But also I was in Miami and New York two years ago and it  is very nice,” said Kankova.

A common difference between the US and other countries is school and the education system. 

In Italy they have five years of high school, and in Russia they have about 11 years of school in total, and you stay with the same group of people all the way through.

There also is something about the thought of American college that seems to appeal to most of them as well. 

Let’s just say that the Midwest weather is also a huge difference for some. 

Some like Volkova are used to the snow and the activities that come with it but others like Mannuzzu share that she is excited to partake in winter activities such as sledding and skiing because it doesn’t snow where she is from. 

“It really looks like being in another universe here in the U.S.,” said Mannuzzu. 

It’s not always the physical differences that make America so different from other countries, but it’s the mentality. 

“Different people’s mentalities and attitudes toward life are so different. I love the people I am surrounded by here,” said Volkova. 

Most of them have the idea of coming back to America, and some of them are already set on coming back. 

Gillet and Mannuzzu are both thinking about going to college here after they finish high school in their countries.

I don’t know, why not,” said Gillet. 

If the right job presented itself Kankova would think about moving back here but otherwise would like to stay with her family and friends back in Slovakia. 

The student who is truly set on living in America is Volkcova as she plans to start her American dream as soon as possible. 

Volkova said, “My plan is to come back to America next year, and overall I will graduate from NDA.”

All of them are excited to be here and have this life-changing opportunity, not only being in the U.S. but also being here at Notre Dame.