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A Division of the International Studies Office

Meet the Global Greeters


Have questions about life at UVA or in Charlottesville? Email the Global Greeters executive team or member with any questions.

Check back for events and resources for new international students from the Global Greeters


Hi y'all, welcome to UVA! My name is Adrian Mamaril, and I am a rising fourth-year from Manila, Philippines, majoring in foreign affairs and commerce with concentrations in finance and accounting, as well as a minor in data analytics applying to the +1 M.S. in Statistics program. Besides academics, I'm involved in UVA Student Council, Asian Pacific American Leadership Training Institute and the Organization of Young Filipino Americans. I love playing tennis, the saxophone, binging the typical comedy show, going on road trips anywhere, and traveling all around the world! I am so excited to introduce you to a wide variety of new opportunities and to make your adjustment here in Charlottesville smoother. Please contact me if you need anything :) (
Hey everyone! My name is Maria Paula Guzman. I'm a rising third-year student from Bogota, Colombia. I’m majoring in Commerce at McIntire minoring in dance. When I was young I got to travel a lot and I love learning about new cultures. The last country I visited was Tunisian spring break 2020! It was the adventure of the lifetime. Outside of classes I'm involved in Rhapsody Ballet, International Justice Mission, Yahweh Ministries, and the amazing fellowship Chi Alpha where I found Real community and it made adjusting to college easier. I know immersing in a new culture might be difficult so don’t hesitate to reach out! I am excited to meet you all! (
Hey everyone! My name is Victoria Gaudenzi and I am an international student from Brazil. I am a rising third-year in the College of Arts and Sciences and I hope to double major in Foreign Affairs and Youth and Social Innovation. I lived my entire life in Brazil, so if you are somewhat lost when you get to UVA, don't worry, I get it! I am a member of the German Society, Brazilian Student Association, and the Madison House Migrant and Latin Aid Program. I am very passionate about social justice, learning languages, traveling, and despite being a terrible cook, I love trying new foods! I cannot wait to meet all of you, learning about your journey and hopefully making you feel more at home! Congratulations and welcome to the community Wahoos! If you have any questions or just want to talk, I am here for you! (


My name is Stephanie Diane Tsakeu Mazan, a proud daughter of Cameroon, a country often called “Africa in Miniature.” I am a PhD Candidate and a French Instructor at UVA. I am also the leader of the Organization of UnderRepresented Students (OURS) of our university. I have been in the USA since 2015, I had the chance to live and attend schools in the West and East parts of the country, what gives an incredible experience about how the American "societies" work. I love to be connected with other people and cultures, an attitude that helps to foster respect and understanding. I have a good sense of humor, but I can’t stand it seeing a human being been mistreated or discriminated. (
Hi everyone! My name is Aya Yehia and I'm a third year PhD student in Systems Engineering! I was born and raised in the US, but have also spent a decade in Dubai, a couple years in Vancouver, Canada and my family is originally from Egypt. I love to bake, weightlift, read, write, play video games, volunteer and try new foods/activities. Feel free to reach me at for anything and everything :) 
My name is Carrington OBrion, and I am a PhD student studying American History. I am from Virginia, but I have been lucky enough to live and study all over the U.S. and abroad. As an undergraduate, I found my home away from home in England, and I returned for my master’s degree. Being an international student was one of the best experiences of my life, but it also came with challenges! Before coming to UVA, I also worked as an undergraduate Admissions Counselor for international students. I’m excited to introduce you to my home state, and to hear all about you! (
Hello everyone, my name is Chinmay Nair, and I am a first year PhD student in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Mumbai, India. This is my fourth year in the US and have acquired a lot of information for navigating this country. In addition to being an International Student Citizen Leader fellow, I am also involved with VISAS to help international students  with their transition on to Grounds. I am always curious to know about different cultures and enjoy being outdoors whether it's for a hike, running, football (soccer) or just travelling. I absolutely love cooking and trying out different food around Charlottesville. So don't hesitate and just reach out if you ever want to talk/have coffee or have any questions. I hope I can help you have a great experience at UVa! (
Hey everyone! My name is Louis Mainwaring Foster. I am in my second year of graduate school and I am originally from Birmingham, England, but I have lived all over America. I am studying Classics, which involves studying about Ancient Greece and Rome as well as the rest of the ancient world. My undergraduate degree was a double major in history of math and science and philosophy with minors in classics and literature. I have travelled a lot and love exploring new cultures. Many of my friends live internationally, so I am always looking for excuses to travel. I will be doing an archeological dig this summer in Israel and I am hoping to to be able to visit Spain again on the way back. I am very passionate about social justice, learning languages, history and trying new foods. So if you know how to cook please teach me!!! or help me make food. I help run one of the graduate affinity groups on campus, the vice president of graduate housing and I am the social chair for the graduate professional council. So if you have any questions related to any of those feel free to ask. I know that moving to a new place and immersing in a new culture can be hard. Feel free to reach out, I am always available to answer questions or if you just want to talk. My email is

Hi. My name is Minah Kim (she/her/hers), and I am a rising fourth year Ph.D. student studying Social Cognitive Neuroscience and Epigenetics in the Psychology department. Starting from this summer I will also be a masters student in the UVA Data Science program. I am from South Korea and did a lot of my schooling in Yongin and Seoul, but my parents moved to Hanam so that’s where I say ‘home’ is now. I spent a few years of my childhood in the US and then came back to the US for undergrad in Minnesota. I worked for a few years in New Haven, CT and Seattle, WA (via OPT & H-1B work visa), before landing in Charlottesville. I'm involved in diversity and inclusive initiatives, and I enjoy meditating, working out, pen-paling, reading the news, learning languages (always looking to add more duolingo friends!), and singing karaoke. Welcome to the UVA and Charlottesville community! (


Hello, friends! My name is Addie. I'm a rising fourth-year Global Security and Justice major and East Asia Studies minor. I transferred to UVA my third-year, so I understand that coming here can be overwhelming. I'm involved in the Washington Society, International Relations Organization, Honor, and VISAS. I like reading, knitting, and deep dives into Wikipedia rabbit holes. I am so excited to welcome you to the UVA community and get to know you better. If you need to talk or have any questions, don't hesitate to reach out! (
Hello and welcome to UVA; we're so glad to have you join our community! My name is Advika Roongta, and by the time I meet you, I'll be a third-year in the College. I'm Indian and lived in Dubai, UAE for most of my life before Charlottesville. I primarily study Economics and Public Policy, but am also super interested in Psychology. Outside of class, I help plan UVA's collegiate MUN conference, the Virginia International Crisis Simulation, and am an intern with VISAS, an on-Grounds program that coordinates English language volunteering. In my free time, I love to read, spend time outdoors on our *beautiful* Grounds, and cook. I love connecting with new students, so please feel free to reach out with any questions, or even just to chat! (
Hello! My name is Aiya Perrine, and I am a fourth year double-majoring in Linguistics and Japanese. I speak English and Japanese, but I love studying languages (as you can probably tell from my majors!), and plan to soon begin learning Mandarin Chinese. I studied abroad at Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan for eight months during my second year at UVa, and once I graduate from UVa I will return to Japan to teach English. In my spare time, I enjoy going in adventures with my friends and family, cooking and eating, and making new memories in new places. Meeting new people from all over the world is my favorite aspect of studying abroad, so I can't wait to meet everyone and explore UVa together! (
Hello! My name is Desiree Ho, and I am a rising second year from Hong Kong, hoping to double major in Commerce and Foreign Affairs. Besides Global Greeters, I'm involved in Class Council, Profit with Purpose, and serve as a Student Advisory Council member at UVA's Democracy Initiative. I love to dance, read, and travel around the world:) Feel free to reach out to me if you would like to learn more about Grounds and/or grab brunch/coffee at the Corner! (
Hi, I'm Esther! I'm a rising 3rd year majoring in Global Developmental Studies and possibly in Religious Studies. I was born in the US, but lived in Nigeria for 15 years before moving here. Outside of the classroom I'm involved in Student Council, International Residential college Council, and writing endeavors. I love writing, drawing, reading all sorts of media (books, manga, webtoons) and trying new things! I look forward to meeting you all and getting to know more about you. Reach out to me via my email ( if you want have questions or just want to hang out!  
Hi I'm Gloria! I'm a rising 3rd year double majoring in Anthropology and Foreign Affairs. I was born in America, but my family is from China; Beijing and Sichuan. I was in a language exchange program in Germany before, and I'm looking towards studying abroad again sometime before I graduate. Catch me going to open gym every Thursday for badminton! I love drawing, webtoons, genshin, and musical instruments like guitar, piano, ukulele, violin. Always down to go grab boba or take a walk outside! I look forward to being able to talk and connect to yall! Feel free to reach out at ( I'm always down to make time!
Helloooooo and welcome to UVA! My name is Laura and I'm super excited to meet you! I'm a rising 3rd year double majoring in Global Studies and Spanish. I've moved around my whole life (shoutout any fellow TCKs) but graduated high school in Canada. In the summer I love to play sand volleyball and go swimming, and in the winter I love reading and cooking. On the weekends, you can find me at Starbucks on the Corner making lots and lots of coffee. Here at UVA I found most of my community through a fellowship called Chi Alpha, but am also involved with the University Judiciary Committee, VISAS, and Madison House. Entering a new culture comes with a lot of processing and figuring things out. If you'd be interested in any advice or even if you just want to talk, I'm here for you! (
Hellloo!! Welcome to UVA! My name is Megnot Abebe and I'm a rising second-year from Addis Abeba, Ethiopia! I plan on majoring either in Psychology or Commerce (or maybe both- I have no idea yet). I'm still figuring out what I want to do so, if you are feeling this way and want to talk about it, I am always here! Some of my hobbies are listening to different types of music, watching superhero shows, and reading. I also went to a French International School where I got to meet people from different parts of the world. I love hearing about different cultures and learning what they do differently. So do NOT hesistate to reach out! Finally, we are all here for a reason so don't forget it! (
Welcome to UVA! My name is Michael. This coming year I will be a 4th year double majoring in Economics and Global Studies (GCCS). I love exploring many of the different relationships around the world and what that means for business and government. I have travelled to a few places outside the US including Italy and Canada, but I would love to go many more places. I love playing video games so I'm always down to play with people for fun. If you're willing to bare with me, I can speak a little bit of Japanese and Spanish. I would love to help you get accustomed to UVA and college life in America. Feel free to reach out to me for any reason. (
Hi! My name is Moon Kim (she/her), and I am a rising fourth year majoring in Economics and Statistics. I lived in South Korea for the first 15 years of my life, and I currently live in Northern Virginia. On grounds, I am involved in music and performing arts organizations including Cavalier Marching Band and First Year Players. I am also in the process of learning Spanish, and I have studied abroad in Valencia in the past semester. While I'll mostly be studying, reading, and practicing in the band building during the semester, I love walking/running, learning martial arts and exploring museums when time permits. Lastly, I am fluent in Korean and at most (intermediately) proficient in Spanish. I am so excited to meet you all, and please reach out if you have any questions! (
Hey everyone! My name is Olivia Binggeli and I’m a third year in the College of Arts & Sciences majoring in Biology on the pre-med track. I’m from the Charlottesville area and was born and raised a UVA fan (catch me at all the home sporting events!), and I was lucky enough to spend my first semester studying abroad as part of the UVA’s Global First program. I love traveling, going to concerts, and eating food - especially if it’s Bodo’s! I’m so excited to welcome you all to a place I’m proud to call home :) Please feel free to reach out with any questions or just to say hi! (
Hi! I'm Ploi Sripoom, and I'm a rising second-year planning to double major in Economics and Youth & Social Innovation. I’m from Thailand, but I studied in the states (Potomac, MD) throughout middle school and 9th grade. Besides academics, I am involved in Charlottesville Debate League, Bringing Race Into Dialogue with Group Engagement, APEX Dance Crew, and Asian Pacific American Leadership Training Institute. In my free time, I love listening to KPOP, playing and watching sports, journaling, meeting new people, and trying new food. I also love to go to all the events happening on grounds with my friends. I'm here to help with your transition to UVA whether it's through introducing you to the grounds, guiding you to resources, helping you find your community, or being your support system. I'm so excited to meet and get to know you -- please don't hesitate to reach out (
Hello friends! My name is Sarina Cooper and I am a rising third-year planning to study Global Environments and Sustainability and Spanish Linguistics and Philology. In my free time, I enjoy photography, longboarding, learning languages on duolingo and dancing around in my room to my many different Spotify playlists. At UVa, I am a member of Sustainability Advocates and Virginia Student Environmental Coalition. I am originally from Charlottesville, and I'd love to share my favorite restaurants and hiking spots with anyone interested! I am so excited to meet you all in the fall. (
Hi everyone! My name is Tianwei Zhao and I am a rising third year studying Economics and Statistics. I am from China and went to Phoenix AZ for high school. I love cats, bubble tea, playing the piano, meeting new people, and learning about different cultures! At school I am involved in Chamber Ensemble, the International Student Affairs Agency in StudCo, and co-founded a club with my friends called the International Student Union (ISU). I am so excited to welcome you all to UVA! Feel free to email me if would like to get bubble tea together or just to say hi (!
Welcome to UVA! Congratulations! I'm Vi, a rising four-year in the McIntire School of Commerce. Beside being  a Global Greeter, I am also a peer transfer advisor and I am in events planning committees of Data Science and Analytics Club. My concentration is in Finance and IT. I transfered from NOVA in my thrid year. I was overwhelmed by the new environment at UVA, and especially COMM school. I know how tough it is  coming to a new school, so feel free to reach out to me with any questions you might have! (
Hiii everyone! My name is Xiyue Zhang, and I go by Coco.:) I am a rising second-year international student from Shanghai, China, intended to pursue the Biomedical Engineering major. I am a rising RA at the International Residential College, thrilled to engage in more organization of fun and meaningful cultural events in our tight-knit residential community. Beyond a busy academic schedule, I enjoy singing, as I am a current  member of the Virginia Women's Chorus; I also love dancing, working out, embracing nature in all forms, and traveling to meet new people and experience different cultures. If you ever need a sounding board to bounce off your concerns, someone to think out loud with you, a study break, or a work-out buddy, I am here for you! I am very excited to meet you all and explore with you all the wonderful experiences and opportunities about your journey at UVA and beyond! (