The Melting Pot: An international student’s experience at Delgado

By Isadora Linheira



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Juliana Mattioli, Delgado Interior Design student working with Prospect3. Photo reproduction: Isaac Delgado Fine Arts Gallery page.



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New Orleans is often called the melting pot of America because of the city’s diverse cultural population. It’s fitting that every year, thousands of students from around the world flock to America to study abroad, many choosing to study right here on campus. For many international students, community colleges offer an affordable and flexible option over four- year colleges to obtain their degrees.

Juliana de Melo Mattioli Gusmão, 24, is one of these students. Hailing from Brazil, Juliana is part of the Interior Design program at Delgado’s City Park campus. She has been studying at Delgado for a year as part of the school’s international program. Juliana sat down to share her experience as an international student here in the melting pot.
What brought you to Delgado and made you decide this was the right school for you?

The first point that made me pick Delgado was the city. I fell in love with New Orleans from the moment I moved here, and then I heard about Delgado and the fact that they had the program for international students. I read good recommendations from professors, ex- alumni, and about a few projects that has been promoted on campus, so Delgado became my first choice.

How did you hear that Delgado had the course you wanted and offered international education?

One of my best friends was raised in New Orleans. When I felt the interest of moving to the United States, my first option was always New Orleans, even before I got the chance to visit the city because I had the whole support of her family. My first plan was to start the ESL program in New Orleans and then move to a different city such as New York to get my major in Interior Design. But when I found out online that Delgado offered the program and after I visited the campus and had a meeting with the international department, Delgado became one of my options to stay in New Orleans.

What was your first impression of the campus compared to your college’s campus in Brazil? How do you feel about Delgado’s campus? Does it offer you what you need as a student?

It’s very different, especially because the schedule for classes are at different times, it’s pretty random, so you get to see people enjoying their time on campus while they wait for their classes, and that’s not something we do in Brazil. The Delgado campus reminds me of my campus in Brazil for the long halls, but the structure of classrooms and common areas are very different. I believe Delgado’s campus offers me what I need as a student from classrooms and labs to common areas.

When it comes to the international department, do you feel supported the way you need by the school? How’s the international department relationship with the students?

Yes, the International department was very helpful with my documentation and giving me all the necessary information to go through with the paperwork to become an international student. I just feel like sometimes the department gets overloaded; as much as they try to help, there’s way too many international students to be helped, they should have more people working with the students and not just one person.

As an Interior Design student what are your future plans as a professional?

I love everything related to architecture and Interior Design. If you ask me what my dream is I’d say it is to decorate big parties. But as for my future I still don’t have concrete plans, I just feel like as long as I’m working in the field, I’ll be happy.

Do you plan on graduating at Delgado or do you plan on transferring soon to a different school?

Yes, I’ll graduate at Delgado, especially because Delgado is the only school in the area that offers the Interior Design course.

Would you encourage more students from your country to come study at Delgado?

I’d totally encourage more students to come study at Delgado. I’m always saying how the life as a student is great here, and how Delgado is a great school. One of my friends from Brazil recently moved to New Orleans to study at Delgado because of my recommendation and she is enjoying it as well. Delgado is a great school for those who are interested in having a great international experience. com.




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