International Students Thrive at JWU

The four tenants of the Wildcat Way are pride, courage, character and community. At Johnson & Wales, our community is global. We attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn and share different cultural perspectives. Our student body includes international students from 65 countries, with many of our students representing the People’s Republic of China, South Korea, India, the Bahamas, Indonesia, Taiwan ROC, Canada, Jamaica, Saudi Arabia and Vietnam. We celebrate global diversity by creating a welcoming and inclusive community for our all of our community members.

JWU celebrates our extraordinary international students every day, but in honor of International Education Week, we would like to introduce you to four of our Wildcats:

Pheedy Umar '23 from Nigeria studying Health Science

photo of Pheedy Umar '23 wearing a sorority shirt and holding a book

"Hello, my name is Nana Firdausi Ize Umar, but I go by Pheedy. I am a senior and am majoring in Health Science as JWU’s You Are Welcome Here Scholarship recipient from Nigeria. I have come to be very involved on campus as I am the president of the Black Student Alliance, the president of the Sigma Nu Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., the president of the National Pan-Hellenic Council and the vice-chair of JWU’s Fraternity and Sorority Life Team. I enjoy cooking, dancing, eating and writing. My favorite thing about Johnson & Wales is the community I’ve been able to help bring to fruition and my professors. They helped me realize my true potential and have always supported and guided me to finding my true passion."

Anannya Rawat '26 from India studying Sports, Entertainment, Event Management

photo of Anannya Rawat '26 smiling while sitting on a staircase

"Not a lot of universities and colleges provide an undergraduate degree for event management. JWU, on the other hand, gave me ample subjects, not only just event management but also entertainment and sports management to choose from! I want to explore the plethora of event types out there, be it music concerts or corporate meetings. I want people to know that event management is not just about weddings and birthdays, and I believe JWU will help me achieve that. One of the things that I absolutely love about JWU is how it keeps students engaged with various events and activities to enjoy and participate in."

Sara Harripaul '23 from Trinidad and Tobago studying Food & Beverage Industry Management

headshot of Sara Harripaul '23 taken outdoors in the sun

"In my quest to find a college, I decided on Johnson & Wales for its renowned community opportunities that the college has to offer. I wanted a career change from culinary to a broader scale within the food and beverage industry. JWU’s programs allow students to have hands-on experience, which was a major factor in choosing this college. I am thrilled to participate in some of the clubs at JWU. The experience I have gained throughout the clubs is priceless, such as the Club Management Association of America which has allowed me to create a professional relationship with students, professors and industry professionals. I am honored to be currently employed by the university. As a result, in the past year, I have met people from various nationalities and learned about their cultures. It has truly been an amazing experience. Upon graduating I plan to work in the hospitality industry, specifically in the food and beverage division."

William Wang '18 MBA, '20 M.S. from China

headshot of William Wang '18 MBA, '20 M.S.

"My journey with Johnson & Wales University started in 2016. I have completed two master’s degrees – an MBA with a hospitality concentration and a master’s in data analytics – and an internship. To me, JWU is not just a school; it’s a way of life. Inside the classroom, I met students from all over the world. We all had different cultural backgrounds and work experiences, but this didn’t stop us from discussing all sorts of topics, from in-class questions to trending news, allowing us to understand and appreciate different perspectives. I also participated in different clubs and events. No matter if you are an animal lover or a game enthusiast, there will be a club for you at JWU. There are also fun events that takes you to different places in Rhode Island and nearby states. It’s a great opportunity for you to make new friends and know more about the state where you live.

"There are also plenty of on-campus job opportunities and resources to students such as the gym, career services, health services, library and tutoring. The professors and staff at JWU are very supportive. They understand that sometimes language may be a barrier, but they are patient, friendly and very experienced. They will do their best to understand you and help you. Some professors even put out invitations to international students for Thanksgiving. I had my first authentic American Thanksgiving experience at Professor Carey’s home back in 2016.

"JWU not only offers education to its students, but also the experience created by its friendly students and professors. As an international student, I enjoyed my time at Johnson & Wales as my home away from home."

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If you’re an international student considering pursuing education in the United States, come study with us! If you have questions about this process, please reach out to

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