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IU students studying far from home share experience of being in the US

Posted at 5:34 AM, May 25, 2021

BLOOMINGTON — Students will head back to college this fall, and many of them will leave home for the first time. Some of those students are traveling much farther than others to get an education in Central Indiana.

Rashi Sarraf traveled to study at Indiana University from New Dehli, India, while David Wang came to Bloomington from Shanghai, China.

“It was a great transition moving from home to here my freshmen year. I think overall, it has been a phenomenal learning experience," said Rashi Sarraf, whose family is still in New Dehli, India.

Both Sarraf and Wang made big sacrifices to study abroad and better their education.

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Rashi Sarraf, a 2021 graduate, came to IU from New Dehli.

"The decision to study abroad, well to study in the United States was one that my mom made very early in my life," Wang said.

"Sometimes it's not stressed enough on how difficult it is from being comfortable at home. Your mom taking a look at everything you're doing and providing for you and your dad there as moral support. It's a huge transition to be that independent," Sarraf said.

Sarraf just graduated from Indiana University and said the last four years haven't been easy being away from family, in a different country, but was worth it in order to see her dreams come to light.

"The love and support kind of changed into growth and encouragement. My parents always emphasized that they just want to see me grow. Sometimes I looked at my growth as their goal," Sarraf said.

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David Wang is a rising junior at Indiana University from Shanghai.

Wang, a rising junior at Indiana University had a different path, by attending a school in Shanghai with an international program that prepared him for this moment.

"That decision to transfer to that school in my elementary school years was made by my mom because she believed that the education that I would receive in the United States would be one that I get more opportunities to explore various subject fields and thrive," Wang said.

Sarraf and Wang consider themselves fortunate to have the financial backing and support from family on the other side of the world. Making this barrier-breaking experience worth cherishing.

Sarraf will return home to New Delhi, India at the end of the month to work, but she plans to return to the U.S. to get her Masters degree. Wang is visiting his family before returning to IU in the fall to start his junior year.