What’s Better than a New International Friend?

This semester I have had the great joy and privilege of being a member of the OU Cousins program. At first I was nervous about joining the program, because at the matching party there were way more American students than international students and I was unable to find a cousin initially. However, a week later I received and email that I was matched with an international student and have loved getting to know her over the course of the semester.

My OU Cousin’s name is Veerle Tierens, but she prefers to go by Vie. Vie is from Belgium and is only here for this semester. Through talking with her I have learned about the differences between schooling in Belgium and in America. I have also learned about her lifestyle and the things that she has experienced in Belgium that I have not here in America. I was also able to share with Vie things that are special to America, such as my sorority. Vie was not familiar with what exactly a sorority was, and I was glad to be able to share with her, since it is something very important to me.

Getting to know Vie over the last few months has provided me with some insight on life in another country and how her culture is. It has been a very eye-opening experience and is something that I will never forget. Unfortunately, Vie will be going back to Belgium in the spring, but the memories I made with her will last for a lifetime.

2 thoughts on “What’s Better than a New International Friend?”

  1. Peyton,

    How exciting that you got to be a Cousin! I heard the matching this year was a cluster; I am so happy that you were matched with a girl you have enjoyed. After learning about your background through other blog posts and your video for our class together, I believe that getting to know Vie was a great way for you to start experiencing other cultures and places without even having to leave Norman. I also think that OU Cousins offers a very unique way to not only learn about other people and their cultures, but also serves as a great opportunity to reaffirm and better understand our own lifestyles and culture as Americans. I am so jealous you got to be a Cousin–I hope you are able to do it again!

  2. Hi Peyton!
    I really enjoyed reading about your OU Cousins experience, especially since I wasn’t able to be a part of it this year. I am so glad that despite the chaotic beginning everything worked out in the end! After hearing stories like yours, I am so excited to be an OU Cousin next year!

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