USF World News

International Student Awarded Prestigious FAIE Scholarship

Congratulations to Dariya Alibi for receiving a prestigious Florida Association of International Educators (FAIE) Study Florida scholarship

Dariya Alibi headshot on green background

Jul. 13, 2021 (Tampa, Florida) – Ms. Dariya Alibi, an undergraduate at the University of South Florida, was recently awarded a prestigious Florida Association of International Educators (FAIE) Study Florida scholarship. FAIE’s key objective is to promote international educational exchange in the State of Florida by providing a platform for communication and networking to foster greater understanding and enhancement of the field of international education. For the 2021-22 academic year, FAIE partnered with Study Florida, a not-for-profit professional association, to support scholarships for international students pursuing higher education at a college or university in Florida. Ms. Alibi, an international student from Kazakhstan, is currently a sophomore at USF pursuing a bachelor’s degree in computer science and holds a cumulative GPA of 3.98. 
In explaining about her decision to study at the University of South Florida, coming from Kazakhstan "has been one of the best decisions of my life," Alibi said, "And it has greatly impacted me and shaped me into the person I am today."
But Alibi admits that when first arriving on campus, making the new adjustment was difficult. Her family was thousands of miles away, she didn’t know anyone on campus, and her academic goals were unclear. "But I was ready for the latest chapter in my life to begin," she adds. "I realized that my biggest dream had come true." She was excited to attend USF, and the challenges only encouraged her to work harder towards her goals and reap everything from her university experience.  
Through a mentorship program, Alibi found a passion for computer science. "I decided to major in computer science because I firmly believe that by pursing this career I will make our world a better place," and she has specific focuses in healthcare and robotics. Alibi is also heavily involved with other organizations on campus like the Global Citizens Project, Women in Computer Science, Society Woman Engineers, and iBuddy.  
"I have met a lot of inspiring individuals from all over the world who share similar values, and who have impacted my life. I have created life-long friendships," Alibi admitted of her organizational and ambassadorial work. She is proud to say that she is part of a project which creates a safe environment for current engineering students and supports them in their journey on campus. She also serves as a volunteer for the National Association of Engineering Student Council Conference, functioning as a liaison between students and the organization. 
Alibi is thankful for her experience and the multitude of opportunities that she has received as an international student. The Study Florida program has "provided such a fantastic opportunity for students to obtain a high-quality education in Florida." With the scholarship, Alibi plans to complete her computer science degree (on time) without worrying about tuition cost and other expenses. Alibi says this will also help her family out during these difficult times, where they will not have to worry about her tuition being due. "I will only empower myself to work harder towards achieving my goals because I’m passionate about making the world a better place and helping others. USF has taught me so much, and I believe this is only the beginning."