UVU could be described as diverse. The International Student Program contributes to the diversity here on campus by allowing students to travel to different countries and attend school here. One student who has taken the opportunity to study at UVU is Titus Elangu from Uganda, East Africa.
“I’ve always had a dream to come [to the U.S.] and take advantage of the opportunity of gaining a better education,” Elangu said. “I chose Utah because I was converted to the LDS church. I knew that that religion is dominate here, so I wouldn’t feel as out of place.”
Elangu said he has enjoyed his time in Utah and has learned a lot.
“I love UVU because of the diversity here. I’ve learned so much and have had the opportunity of meeting other students from all over the world,” Elangu said. “UVU has good programs and fun activities. It is a good university for me.”
Although Elangu enjoys UVU and the U.S., he admitted that adapting to the different culture was challenging. One culture difference he mentioned was the attitude young people in the U.S. have that driving and owning their own car is a right. In Uganda, very few wealthy people have a car, and most of them do not receive one until they are around 25.
Elangu described other culture differences such as how in East Africa, most families have extended family living with them. He said the food is very different and that most people in Uganda are not as attached to their pets.
“The first Sunday I was here, I was sitting in church during a testimony meeting listening to a woman who was very upset that her dog had died,” Elangu said. “I wanted to laugh, but when I looked around I noticed that everyone was very serious. That is when I realized the difference in cultures.”
Elangu’s favorite thing to do in the U.S is to travel to different states and see the differences.
Elangu’s future plans include a doctorate in political science and becoming a politician in Uganda.
“I have a big dream for my country and want to run for President,” Elangu said. “For decades we have had bad leadership, but with a good education I hope to be able to become a transformational leader and change my country.”