Hendrik van der Zandt from Germany is a senior studying Finance and International Business for his bachelor’s degree of Science in Business Administration from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Why did you decide to study in the USA?
I went to high school in Illinois for one year and I got to travel in the U.S. During my last year of high school in Germany, I applied to Marquette University after getting a tour and meeting the professors the winter break before graduation. I fell in love with the campus and city and I knew that this is where I wanted to go for the next four years.
Why did you choose Marquette University?
During my visit at Marquette University, I met several professors and I was interested in the business school at Marquette. I learned more about the Applied Investment Management (AIM) program and knew I wanted to be part of this unique program. The program was established to be one of the nation’s first CFA certified programs where students have the chance to manage almost $3 million of the university’s endowment in fixed income and equity securities.
What do you like best?
I am very impressed by the amount of interaction students have with their professors in the classroom. Also, there are multiple advisors whom guide you in terms of academic courses necessary to graduate, career opportunities, interview preparation, etc.
What do you miss most?
I miss my family a lot. Usually, it’s not a big deal, especially in times of Internet communication and video chat. However, when you see all the parents come from all over the country to help their children move, you do feel a little bit lonely when everyone is with their families.
What was your biggest surprise?
I was surprised about the relationship of individuals to their university and vice versa. The network you build throughout your college career will continue to be there even decades after you graduate. The support from individuals to the universities is tremendous, especially at Marquette where many scholarships and other opportunities are afforded through this lifelong connection.
... your biggest disappointment?
Marquette does not have an American football team.
How have you handled:
... language differences?
I think it was only a small issue my first couple months here. You get used to the language and culture easily. Everyone is very friendly and understanding.
I have always had campus jobs and paid internships. This is helpful for money you like to use to travel and do things other than school stuff. The scholarship efforts at Marquette University are also tremendous and I received additional funds later on in my college career with good grades.
What are your activities?
In my four years I was a part of a handful or student organizations, founded my own organization, played in multiple intramural leagues, studied abroad for a semester in Shanghai, China and went on multiple trips with the AIM program to Chicago and New York.
How easy or difficult was making friends?
I think it is fun living with other students in a residence hall during your first two years. You are constantly surrounded by other students your age and I found it very easy to make great friends. I also think that many American students are eager to meet international students to learn more about their background.
How relevant is your U.S. education to your personal goals and to the needs of your country?
I will start a full-time position at an investment bank in New York after graduating from Marquette. I believe this long-term career goal was made possible through my education at this university, my personal drive and ambitions and the support of amazing alumni and faculty.
What is your advice to other students who are considering a U.S. education?
I believe that it has been the best decision I have made in my life to come to Marquette University and study here. After four years at Marquette, I have a very unique background and skill set, a great job lined up, friends all around the globe and experiences that I can reflect on for the rest of my life. I can only recommend to anyone who is thinking about studying here in the U.S. to actively pursue that dream and consider the amazing opportunities it will bring with it. Good luck!