Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Student success: Journey from Vietnam leads to success at Grossmont College

Yen Nguyen

It’s not too often that someone will leave a foreign country to attend Grossmont College, but that’s what Vietnamese native Yen Nguyen did.

Well, sort of.

“I wanted to get a better education and have better opportunities,” said Nguyen, whose first stop after leaving Vietnam almost four years ago was living with an aunt in Las Vegas. But after a short stay at the College of Southern Nevada, Nguyen decided to relocate in San Diego County. “A friend introduced me to Grossmont and I liked it very much. I like the environment. Grossmont College has given me a lot of opportunities and I have made a lot of friends.”

Nguyen is set to graduate in June 2016 and is planning to transfer to UC San Diego en route to her goal of becoming a pharmacist. A stellar student who has a grade point average of 3.8, Nguyen was honored with the Grossmont College Financial Aid Department Continuing Student Scholarship.

Nguyen has involved herself in Griffin life since coming to Grossmont, and she is active with the International Student Club. She also volunteers at Sharp Grossmont Hospital as a pharmacy aide and has helped out at the San Diego Food Bank.
Adjusting to life in a new country hasn’t been easy, but she is glad she made the journey.
“The first barrier is the language,” Nguyen said. “When I first came here, I didn’t speak much English. But my aunt told me just talk to the people here. They are friendly and they will talk to you. The second barrier is the culture shock. It is very different from home. But I am getting used to it and I have had a lot of support.”