Rashid Al-Naimi is glad he chose University of the Pacific located in Stockton, California to go and further his education after high school. He says coming to the United States was made possible by the help of his country. “ I am from Qatar and I chose to come to the United States because my country sponsored everyone who want to study there because education is really valuable in my country and there are a lot of things to study here,” he says.
“There are a lot of challenges so I can study and use a lot of things like language, like the skills here, academic education is good here so I choose to study here because all of these things are in the United States and the United States only.”
Rashid choose Electrical Engineering as his major. The 18 year old says adjusting to campus life has been somewhat of a challenge, but he has managed. “I’m a freshman right now and it will be tough for me, but after a month or two months I was getting use to studying here and [learned] to cope with people and to cope with my classes and my teachers so I was getting an ‘A’ in all of my classes,” he says.
“I am studying Electrical [Engineering] and after I am done I can go and pursue my Masters and PhD in Communication Engineering.”
Rashid says he is the only international student from Qatar at the university right now, but other international students from other countries do attend the university. “There are a lot international students because I was in an exchange student program so every semester there is a lot of students from outside the United States came here and you can share with them and learn their culture,” he says.
“I believe there is about fourteen percent international students at UOP and I am the only one from Qatar at this university right now.”
There are a few sports Rashid is involved in however, he says his focus remains on receiving an education. “Education is the first goal for me because I came here for an education mainly and I was trying to be the best in every field I am participating in because I was the first student in my country back home and I like being the first in everything,” he says.
“I choose my major because it is really helpful for me and I knew that it would benefit my country so I choose it and I hope that I can make something for my country.”
Coming from another country, Rashid says he has notice several differences from how people back home live versus being here in the United States. “People there are different. They are different in like tradition.
Tradition is different in my country and people are friendly and a lot of things are different like the weather is different there. It is hot there. They are Muslim. Most of them are Muslim so they converse with the community, but we are open now for other religions and people everywhere and I like it,” he says.
“But the United States is the best in the world and it is multi-cultural so there is a lot of difference. We are only [a single ]culture and here is multi-cultural so there are a lot of differences in the community itself.”
Radshid is far from finishing his studies at University of the Pacific, but he says once he does, he will go on to pursue a master's degree. “In my opinion I made a good decision because I feel confident, independent,” he says.
“ I think I can make it where ever or whenever. I can make the difference if I was really considering my dreams and my goals and I can make anything that I want to, but I should study first and I should work and then everything will be alright for me,” he says. “For me I am going to stay here in the United States and pursue my Masters and PhD here in Communications Engineering.”