Karki finds belonging in global Nebraska community
May 16, 2022 | By Mia Azizah
As a first-generation international student from Nepal, Sandhya Karki has a big dream — to make her parents proud and seize any opportunities to make her life more fulfilling and rewarding provided by the Nebraska community.
"Because of the community, UNL is a very nice and small place with everything you need to adjust, adapt and grow as an individual as well as a professional," Karki said.
Throughout her years in Nebraska, she's worked to positively impact others across campus through her positions with the International Student and Scholar Office and the New Student Enrollment Welcome Team. Karki has also served as an ambassador for Big Red Resilience and Well-being, the College of Education and Human Sciences student advisory board, the International Student Advisory Board and president of the Nepalese Student Association.
"I have always been part of most of the global events that we have done on campus, from organizing, advocating and representing," she said. "I feel I have done it all from my end, and I love the global community that we have in our campus."
Her involvements and the support she received from faculty and staff in global Nebraska community inspired Karki to celebrate and share her culture with fellow Huskers. From performing a traditional Nepalese dance at the signature Global Café and Connections event during International Education Week 2021 to organizing other multicultural events, Karki has grown as a strong leader who embraces multicultural diversity.
My number one advice for [new international students] is to try out the opportunity that you are provided with and seize them – do not feel inferior by anything and tell yourself you are enough.
One of the challenges that comes with being an international student is the distance from the family – and it was no exception for Karki. However, Karki says the staff at ISSO and many faculty in the College of Education and Human Sciences made Nebraska feel like home, even as she grappled with a global pandemic in the last two years.
"The faculty was just an email away from everything. They understood the situation that we were in and were very much graceful to provide us with extra assistance to help us succeed academically," Karki explained.
In between her leadership positions on campus, the nutrition and health sciences major also found time to grow as a professional while interning at Ameritas and the Nebraska Public Health Association. Karki says her internship wouldn't have been the same without the support of Virginia Chaidez, associate professor of nutrition and health sciences, who supported her throughout the experience and treated her like family.
"There are so many factors that have contributed to the woman I am today," Karki said. "I am also grateful to my college for providing me with opportunities to learn, grow and upgrade. They all add to my value and my life wouldn't have been the same."
As Karki prepares for the next step in her career and looks towards graduate school in the future, she's excited for new experiences and opportunities to continue growing as a leader.
"Graduating from Nebraska to me means an accomplishment and the beginning of a new journey," Karki said.
Meet more international Huskers