Senior Ingmar Waterloh’s father once told him he should be able to make it in the world with nothing but a toothbrush in his pocket. After completing his undergraduate education at GW, the international student from Aachen, Germany finally feels he can live up to that advice.
Waterloh is one of 545 international students graduating this year. Representing 84 different countries, these graduates were honored Wednesday at the International Students Graduation Reception.
Joseph Leonard, director of the International Services Office, said the diversity international students bring to GW helps enrich the education other students receive at the University.
“You’re really operating on a whole different level when you come to GW because you’re not going to a regional university with a homogeneous faculty and student body,” Leonard said. “You’re coming to a global university in a multicultural city.”
Waterloh, who graduated with a degree in business administration with a concentration in finance and information systems, said he was initially attracted to GW because of its location.
“Washington is truly in the center of everything,” he said.
Waterloh is preparing to take the CFA exam in June. He plans to stay in the area after graduation while he searches for jobs in investment banking.
Ier Jonathan-Ichaver stepped foot on campus for the first time just two hours before the reception. She traveled from Switzerland, where she successfully completed all her courses online after moving from Nigeria.
Jonathan-Ichaver is receiving a master’s degree in political management. She said she enjoyed completing her degree online because it allowed her to work at her own pace.
“You’ve got to be real disciplined,” she said. “It’s a real test of character.”
Provost Steve Lerman spoke at the reception and urged the graduates to remember they will always be a part of the GW community, no matter where they go after graduation.
“To be great, all universities have to be global in scope,” he said.