The Office of International Student Services has named Nithya Doraiswamy, a doctoral student in the Department of Educational Foundations and Leadership in the Judith Herb College of Education, Health Science and Human Service, the 2012 International Student of the Year.She was recognized in April on International Student and Scholar Appreciation Day.
“Being the recipient of the International Student of Year Award has certainly been a proud and humbling occasion for me,” Doraiswamy said. “I was pleased to learn that two among my most-respected professors, Drs. Lynne Hamer and Charlene Czerniak, thought that I deserved to be nominated.
“The reasons for their nominations are truly everything I have loved and enjoyed doing, both on and off campus. It was also humbling to know that I was chosen among the wide range of talented international scholars on campus.”
Doraiswamy has a 3.9 GPA from her master’s and doctoral programs and is a graduate/research assistant on the Leadership for Educators: Academy for Driving Economic Revitalization in Science (LEADERS), which is funded by a $5 million grant from the National Science Foundation. She designs, assists with, and co-teaches leadership and social justice courses for the LEADERS summer institute.
The Office of International Student and Scholar Services established the award to create more awareness about the international students on campus and their contributions to The University of Toledo and surrounding community.
“We are proud to see Nithya Doraiswamy receive this award,” said Peter Thomas, director of the Office of International Student and Scholar Services.
“My experience at The University of Toledo has been nothing short of phenomenal in its positive contributions to my passion in scholarly pursuits, community engagement, new cultural experiences, and the ever-widening networks of friends, mentors and other scholars,” Doraiswamy said.
“The UT College of Business and Innovation-PSG Institute of Management collaboration in particular has been a foundation for my achievements. The department I study in, the LEADERS grant I work for, the faculty, staff, fellow graduates, and administrators across the University, and friends have all played a key role in my wonderful journey at UT and in Toledo.”
A former graduate assistant with the Office of Global Initiatives/International Student Services, Doraiswamy is active in program development and new initiatives in the UT-PSG Business School, both as an alumna and as a student. She organized the university-wide international cooperation and exchange panel, showcasing UT’s international connections across borders with special reference to the UT-PSG collaboration. She is an active member in the Sister City Committee between Toledo and Coimbatore, India, and volunteers at the a language center for teaching an Indian language.
Doraiswamy has organized and presented in the Research Colloquium and Symposium series in the Judith Herb College of Education, Health Science and Human Service. In the Department of Educational Foundations and Leadership, she was involved in the design and development of a pilot course on peace education and will co-teach a master’s/doctoral-level leadership course on social justice in science education that she also helped design and develop.
In the community, Doraiswamy has been active in the Light the Night project under the grassroots organization Inner City Development Coalition. She is involved with many student organizations, including the Graduate Student Association, International Student Association and the International Business Association, and is a volunteer with ASHA for Education, a nonprofit organization for basic education in India.
The International Student of the Year honor is awarded to a full-time undergraduate, graduate or American Language Institute student at The University of Toledo with a minimum 3.0 GPA. The recipient must demonstrate participation in student organizations, community service projects and activities outside of the classroom. Students may be nominated by their peers, faculty or staff. Members of the International Students Association Executive Board review the nominations and select a recipient.
The Office of International Student and Scholar Services provides assistance and services to UT international students, helping them transition to life at UT and in the United States.