Your International Student Advisors are Rohene Bouajram, Michelle Kangro, Karin Kosarzova and Jean Lomas. Our team also includes Aki Amano, Program Assistant. For more information on our advising hours and services, visit http://students.sfu.ca/isap.html
We also have dedicated and amazing Student Coordinators and Student Leaders who you can learn more about below; they plan and organize fun events and programs for you–take advantage of these programs and we hope your time at SFU is positive!
One of the mottos which you will find posted in my office that I try to live by is “Don’t let what you can’t do stop you from doing what you can do” [John Wooden]. Having emigrated from Zimbabwe several years ago, my transition and experiences were masked with triumphs, challenges and memories that have been motivating forces for my passion in the area of international education and international student transition.
I honestly love being an International Student Advisor! Over the years I have met many inspirational students who have made big decisions and life changes; yet they still continue to smile through it all and remain positive. As an SFU alumnus with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology degree and working for the university for seven years, I truly believe that one’s university experience should be an opportunity for growth and self-discovery; thus I have a strong interest in working with students in roles where they can cultivate their own leadership style.
During the weekends, you will find me playing field hockey and making jewellery. I am also fortunate to have travelled to different parts of the world; notably South Africa, Malawi, Finland, UK and Mauritius. Having been bitten by the travel bug, I’m always open to hearing suggestions for next places to visit, so feel free to let me know if you have any!
Michelle Kangro, International Student Advisor
Hello! I’ve worked at SFU since 2008 and am also a Simon Fraser University alumnus, having completed the professional teaching certification right here on Burnaby Mountain. I taught with the Burnaby School District before I came to work at SFU, working with international and domestic students in the sciences and languages. I love working in a mentoring role, particularly in facilitating opportunities for leadership and connecting students to the tools and programs that can enhance their achievements.
I’m also lucky enough to have travelled all over the world, though I’ve spent most of my time in New Zealand, the UK and with my family in Estonia. I’m very fortunate to be part of the Estonian community in Vancouver…Staying connected to my roots and partaking in traditions my family has always followed is an important part of who I am and what I have to offer my community at large.
I live in beautiful Vancouver and keep myself pretty busy when I’m not at SFU International Services for Students. I am very active, and love biking, swimming, yoga! I’m also a folk dancer and singer with the Vancouver Estonian Community, and get to perform for people all over Metro Vancouver. Finally, I’m a bit of a foodie, and totally dig heading to our local markets so I can invent new masterpieces (or disasters!) in my kitchen. Though I admit, I also love eating out in Vancouver…Have you checked out the restaurant scene here? It’s awesome!
Jean Lomas, International Student Advisor
Hi there! I’m thrilled to be part of the International Student Advising team. I’ve been working in the field of international education since 2005, and at SFU since 2008. I grew up here in the Lower Mainland, but I’ve also lived in Northern BC, Victoria, Toronto, and Cork, Ireland, where I received a Master of Arts in Italian from University College Cork. My experience as an international student overseas inspired me to pursue a career that would allow me to help others through their own transitions, and I’m so happy to be doing that here at SFU!
I’m passionate about travel and I love experiencing new cultures. My favourites so far have been Italy, Mexico, Peru and Vietnam … but the list is always growing! I especially enjoy trying new foods from around the world, and I feel lucky that Vancouver’s restaurant scene makes that possible even when I’m at home.
When I’m not at SFU, I’m usually out and about in Vancouver – I live in the city and love to explore. In the summer I enjoy hiking, biking and relaxing at the beach. During the colder months, you can find me watching hockey (go Canucks!), cooking, or taking language classes – I speak French and Italian, and I’m currently learning Korean!
Karin Kosarzova, International Student Advisor
As a past international student I lived the experience I’m now passionately supporting students through. It’s my third year at SFU International and as a new International Student Advisor I would love to help make your time spent at SFU socially rewarding, culturally enriching and professionally stimulating. I remember well the challenges of being an international student and adjusting to new academic, cultural and social experiences. How we respond to these experiences makes us who we are.
In Fall 2011 I am excited to start my Masters of Education at SFU Surrey and to be a student again! I love meeting people and exploring global cultures, having been fortunate to travel extensively through Europe, Asia, USA, and Central America. This has given me a love for Japanese food and ignited a passion to explore my native Czech language. In my spare time I enjoy sailing, snowboarding, reading, yoga, and hiking in North Vancouver with my two dogs.
I would like you to feel welcome to SFU’s community so please stop by our office and we will be happy to assist you.
Aki Amano, Program Assistant
Hello everyone! I’ve worked at SFU since 2011 and I feel very fortunate to be a part of such a wonderful and welcoming team. I have immigrated to Canada two years ago and it has been so exciting to be back after 7 years of being away.
As a student, I completed my Bachelor of Linguistics degree at the University of Victoria. Prior to this, I was an International student for one year in Canterbury, England. These experiences have helped me learn about the personal and academic benefits of receiving an international education. For the last 6 years, I have been involved in international education in Japan, both as a private school English teacher and as an Exchange student advisor at Ritsumeikan’s Faculty of Business just outside of Kyoto city. I hope I can share some of my experiences with the students of SFU.
Outside of work, I love traveling and learning salsa dance. I also love finding delicious restaurants and it is kind of a weekend hobby. If anyone knows any good places, please let me know!
Max Moncaster David Dueck
International Mentorship Event Coordinator