Russia

Dmitry Votintsev - Russian International Student

Dmitry Votintsev 150px

It almost seems that Dmitry and Rose-Hulman were meant to find each other. Dmitry found Rose-Hulman while searching the Internet for good electrical engineering colleges and universities around the world. His mother encouraged him to consider studying abroad to learn about and discover life elsewhere. A desire to see what the world had to offer and a search for good electrical engineering schools led Dmitry Votintsev from his home in Moscow to Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. It is a move that Dmitry would make again if given the chance.

When Demitry found Rose-Hulman he thought it needed further exploration, after all, it is the number one undergraduate engineering school in the United States. So, Rose ended up on the short list, along with MIT and Cal Tech, as well as a few others. But, after further research about the school, Rose-Hulman earned the top spot and Dmitry was sold.

His mom also thought he might study more at a smaller-sized school, he adds. So, Dmitry found his U.S. home away from home.

An electrical engineering major and math minor, Dmitry first become interested in the electrical field while in high school - ninth or tenth grade. It was a teacher that set him in that direction, he recalls.

"The teacher was awesome. He had previous students come to the course to lecture and show applications of what they had learned," Dmitry says, moving up to the front of his chair. That style of teaching is much like the hands-on education he is receiving at Rose-Hulman, and a big reason he loves the college.

That high school experience sent him directly to the "store" to buy soldering materials and controllers - to work on projects on his own.

And those few years ago, when his interest in electrical engineering was first piqued, he didn't realize he would bring that passion with him to a small school in Terre Haute that would help him to develop his craft.

Life is much different in Terre Haute, Indiana, than it was in Russia. But the differences aren't just the obvious, such as food, language and even the noticeable difference in the size of the city he left for Terre Haute. The way people relate is also something that stands out in Dmitry's mind as he talks about his life as a student at Rose-Hulman.

"I like this place," he says smiling. "The professors are cool here. Here, I go talk with professors. I consider them more than just professors, they are also friends that I can look to and ask questions, and not just about the field, but about life."

The professors' open-door policy to students, as well as their attention in class to ensure everyone understands the material, is something Dmitry appreciates.

Students have also befriended Dmitry who fondly recalls a girl he met the first week at school. "In just a week she had asked me if I wanted to go to church with her and invited me over," he says. "She even invited me to her parents' for Thanksgiving."

And the guys on his floor in his residence hall became friends immediately, he says, even inviting him on travels.

He's also enjoying the variety of activities on campus, including some club sports he's playing, such as floor hockey, which he loves, and some soccer. "I'm also doing lifting and rollerblading."

But one of the best things he's discovered at his new home - Greek life. " A new member of Pi Kappa Alpha, he wasn't sure when he was first introduced to fraternities if it was something in which he wanted to participate. But after a friend took him to visit some of the houses, he decided it was interesting.

"We do not have this in Russia," he explains. "This is very different, but I love it." And after narrowing his choices and rushing Pi Kappa Alpha, he believes this fraternity is the right choice.

"I like the feeling of brotherhood, friendship and love. It's awesome," he says. And for an only child, it's great to now have brothers.

He says when he moves into the fraternity it will be a continuation of living with a large group of friends, like what he has experienced in dorm life - also a first for him.

While he will spend most of the summer here working in Ventures, Dmitry will go home for a visit in August. Looking ahead, Dmitry is planning out his future, although graduation is still a few years away - 2015. He plans to pursue a master's degree and possibly a Ph.D.

When his education is complete, he does plan to return home. However, he says, "the world is huge," you never know where he may end up.