A Year in the Fulbright Life: Rajaie’s Story

2 min readJan 18


My last month and a half have been packed with lots of schoolwork and fun activities. I was able to continue exploring the beautiful nature of Virginia by going on a few camping and hiking trips in the area. I also was able to experience many “firsts” in the United States. I attended my first Halloween costume party dressed as an Arab pirate with a Jordanian twist, I attended my first college football game, and I went to my first Thanksgiving dinner! During Thanksgiving break, I shared the Jordanian dish “Shushbarak” at an international Thanksgiving dinner held by a local church. While there, I shared both Jordanian food and culture, and I was able to learn about many other regions’ foods and cultures!

This fall, I was lucky enough to be here for Virginia Tech’s 150th anniversary! Fireworks lit up the sky, giving a mesmerizing show above the campus.

As a bonus, I had the opportunity to volunteer (with the help of my wife) to give a lecture to the class that I serve as a Graduate Teaching Assistant for. The lecture explained the biology and practice of using the Electrocardiogram (EKG) that the students had to build for the class. We even had the chance to demonstrate the EKG I built as a TA. It was a very fun and enriching experience to get to interact with United States and international students alike in a classroom setting.

More recently, I got to celebrate the joy of Christmas by attending a lovely Christmas orchestra performance at the Moss Arts Center at Virginia Tech. It was a magical experience, and it felt like a great way to wrap up the semester. I look forward to whatever Fulbright has set for me next!

Rajaie is a first-year Fulbright student from Jordan. He is studying Engineering at Virginia Tech.

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