Hesston College School of Engineering is celebrating its approval to admit international students to its baccalaureate program beginning this fall. This status is granted by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Student Exchange Visitor Program. It comes after a six-month approval process and joins a number of other programs offered on campus, including a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Bachelor of Business Administration.
Educational institutions in the US that accept international students must first obtain approval through an I-17 immigration document. This process involves extensive documentation and annual site visits to maintain status. There are generally additional documentary requirements to establish approval, but these were not required for this program.
“Our international partners are very impressed with our engineering program,” said John Murray, director of international admissions, “especially the focus on mechatronics.”
Mechatronics is new to Hesston College and brings an educational opportunity that will help students meet the needs of the future. Mechatronics combines mechanical engineering, electronics and computer science into one discipline. Higher level classes will begin in August 2022.
Two international students patiently waited for this approval. Jessica Raharjo, a student from Semarang, Indonesia and a sophomore at Hesston College, is looking forward to continuing her studies.
“It’s amazing how the combined knowledge of these engineering fields can change the way people live,” Raharajo said. “Engineers make the world progress.”
Due to the increased demand for mechatronics from students and industry needs, this program will position its graduates to achieve their career goals. In addition, all students have more intercultural opportunities by including students from all over the world in this program.
Hesston College serves international students representing 21 countries, representing 15% percent of the student body. With the addition of an engineering degree as an option for these students, the college continues to promote further global diversity in its area.
“The approval of the engineering program not only affects my future,” Raharajo said, “but also the future of the people who live next to me.”