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Nayifa Nihad

Sheetal Bachegowda

Nayifa Nihad

International Admissions Counselor 
1+ 405-325-2151

Schedule a virtual 1:1


   Master of Arts in International Studies
   University of Oklahoma
   Class of 2022
   Bachelor of Arts in International Area Studies
   University of Oklahoma
   Class of 2020
   United World College of Southern Africa - Waterford Kamhlaba, Kingdom of eSwatini
   Class of 2015

As a student, where did you leave your mark on campus?

I love dancing! From my freshman year through graduate school, I loved showcasing South Asian culture through dance. I participated in dance competitions and cultural nights, and dance was also what I chose for my talent portion when I got crowned Miss International/Face of OU in 2020.

Define the OU Family in your own words.

Coming to OU was out of my comfort zone, especially as an international and first-generation college student. I was the only student from my home country (the Maldives) for a very long time. My OU Family helped me feel comfortable and find my place within the community. A huge shoutout to the UWC Scholars Office, the international admissions team, and the faculty and staff of my college for providing me with the tools and resources to excel and grow personally and professionally at OU.

When was the moment you felt the greatest Sooner pride?

Whether it is a football game or an international student cultural night, whenever we come together as a community is when I feel my Sooner pride the greatest. I love that we can come together, show up for one another, and celebrate our unity and differences!

What was the greatest gift you took with you after graduation?

The people and the connections. OU was many things for me: a beautiful campus, a place to nurture my love for learning and education, and a space to grow and excel. But the people who made my OU experience as memorable as it was will always be my greatest gift of all.

Reveal one secret about campus.

There are several secret tunnels on campus. Try to find one of them!

What is your favorite OU tradition?

Eve of Nations, hosted by the International Advisory Committee (IAC). IAC is the executive student body representing international students and coordinating international student organizations at OU. Eve of Nations is the largest annual multicultural show in Oklahoma and celebrates the diverse array of cultures, traditions, and heritage of our international students at OU.

What advice do you have for prospective students?

It might be obvious, but don't be afraid to ask questions. You have a lot of counselors, staff, faculty, and current students who are SO excited about you coming to OU, and we are here to help answer any questions, concerns, and doubts. Choosing which college to attend is scary and intimidating, but that's what we are here for!