A College Worth a Cross-Continent Journey
My name is Ruth Morara and I am in the class of 2026. My major is Conservation Biology. I honestly feel more like Kent chose me than the other way around! I am Kenyan-American but my family lives in Kenya, and so have I for the past 12 years. The exchange rate between our currencies made my dream of studying in the US look impossible.
However, several staff at Kent State reached out and connected me to resources which could help me bypass this financial obstacle. Within a couple of weeks, I was met with a plethora of financial aid; far higher than any offered by the other universities that I was accepted into.
The choice at this point was obvious: Kent State was the college for me.
The Honors College was one of the avenues of financial aid presented to me by the admissions office at Kent State. I initially saw it as just another means to get a scholarship, but I soon came to view it as a way to hold myself accountable. The Honors College requires you to maintain a certain GPA and with a scholarship on the line, this pushes me to take my academic life seriously.
So far my experience with the Honors College has been amazing. While being a Kent State student is great, I have to admit there are a lot of perks of being an Honors student. For one, if you live on campus, you’ll likely be given residence in Stopher or Johnson Hall. They are right in the center of campus which means you’ll be pretty close to most of your classes.
Believe me, this is a great time saver.
You also get to register for your classes earlier than everyone else, which has given me a lot of freedom in my course selection. We also have a library and a computer lab, which is a life saver if you don’t want to walk all the way to the main library. We even get free printing in the computer lab! There are also a bunch of events which are hosted by the Honors College which are extremely fun and engaging.
While I enjoy all the aforementioned benefits, the most important for me is how the Honors College has served as a support system for me. I have an Honors advisor in addition to my regular advisor, who fills in the guiding parental figure that I lack as my family is 8,000 miles away.
You can tell that the advisors truly care about you as an individual, not just the state of your academics.
I also have the special privilege of working at the Honors College. Therefore, I am privy to a lot of the behind-the-scenes of Honors events. It is genuinely awe-inspiring how much effort is invested and how much care is applied to various facets of the college. They have made the work environment so warm and relaxed that working there doesn’t even feel like work!
Overall, I would say that Kent State has been a conducive environment for my academic, social, mental and economic life.
It is a safe space for me to cultivate my knowledge, without neglecting other aspects of my life. The professors, the organizations and the facilities are all incredible and made my journey across continents worth it.
To any high school senior considering Kent State, don’t hesitate—join us! I promise you that for any qualms you may have, there are a myriad of friendly faces who will gladly lend a helping hand. I now leave you with a Swahili phrase: “Karibu sana!”, which means a very warm welcome.