International Student Enjoys Elon

Honduran Flag

The one flaw always working against Elon University was its diversity. The majority of the school is white. According to College Prowler, a site that many students use as a reference when looking for schools to attend, states, “One of Elon’s definite weaknesses is its lack of diversity…Sometimes a student will see a Hispanic or Indian student and make a joke like, ‘there walks diversity at Elon.’” The administration of Elon University is concerned about the schools lack of diversity. They have created a student ambassador program to help recruit students of different ethnicities. The Elon administration has also provides students with various minority clubs, sororities and fraternities. However one student, Alexa Bobadilla, was a little less pessimistic about the schools current diversity situation.

Picture of Roatan Bay Islands in Honduras

Alexa Bobadilla is a freshman at Elon University who traveled all the way to North Carolina all the way from Honduras. She explained to me that Elon University seemed like the best fit for her as her first home for her first experience in America. “When I came visiting, as I walked down the campus I felt right at home. Living on a small country, I’ve always had small, twenty to twenty five person classes and I saw how that benefits on my schoolwork.” Alexa explained that no matter where her destination, she would probably be leaving most of her culture behind her.

For most college students, the largest difficulty is the amount of responsibility one is burdened with compared to what they are used to at home. For Alexa, it was the exact opposite. In Honduras the legal age for driving, voting and drinking are all 18 years of age.  By the time Alexa came to the U.S. she already had a lot of experience drinking openly at home. “…By the time most Honduran teenagers are 18, we have already had experiences with alcohol and different types of parties. While I see that lots of teenagers here haven’t been able to experience this, so when they do they don’t know how to act or how much is ok to drink.” This is one large cultural difference that greatly benefits Alexa.

Alexas first trip to the United States was difficult for her. Elons level of diversity certainly did not help. Alexa missed having home and family to rely on. Despite all of this, Alexa donates her time at Elon Universities “El Centro” to use her background to help others.  She helps students study Spanish and spends time with other students who are fluent in Spanish or are from Spanish speaking countries. Elon’s diversity issues have not gotten in the way of her good experience at the University. Alexa Bobadilla is a step in the direction for Elon’s administration and student body.

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