Tony Parra: PNT Staff Writer
They come from a different country where a different language is spoken but they share the same goals as other Eastern New Mexico University students. They want to get a higher education.
Andres Chinchilla and Brenda Cordova are exchange students from Mexican universities who attended ENMU. Chinchilla went to the University of Monterrey and grew up in the city of Monterrey.
“I’ve learned a lot from the classes at Eastern,” Chinchilla said. “I’ve been able to meet different people and I had a great experience.”
Cordova attended a university in Hermosillo, Sonora. Chinchilla and Cordova are back in Mexico for the holidays and only attended ENMU for the fall semester. They said they are within one year of graduation from their Mexican universities.
Cordova said one of the differences she noticed from Mexican and American college students is the valuing of a higher education.
“In Mexico, it’s harder to get scholarships and grants,” Cordova said. “They appreciate being at college more because they had to work hard to get there and don’t want to lose their scholarships.”
Both students said their ENMU professors were very helpful.
Mary Ayala, professor of modern languages at ENMU, said they are exchange students through the CONASEP. Ayala said it is the third year for the program at ENMU. Ayala said the Mexican students selected must be profecient in English.
“Once accepted, the terms indicate that students must comply with all university requirements for visa application,” Ayala said. Ayala said students from ENMU pay tuition here and are accepted without tuition at the host institution and vice versa. The students need to provide funding for such things as room and board.
“Not only does it allow our students to attend truly premiere institutions at the reasonable ENMU tuition rate, but it also allows them to visit other countries, gain cultural and global competencies and increase their language skills.”