Name: Muhammad Arif
Hometown: Faisalabad, Pakistan
Major: Business studies
MM: What made you come to UD from Pakistan?
MA: I really like the business program here, and when I was looking at colleges, my high school counselor found me this college. I applied here along with a couple of other universities and got the best scholarship here, and the city of Dallas is also very similar to the city that I come from, so that’s how I chose UD.
MM: In what way is Dallas similar to your city?
MA: My city is also a big city with lots of traffic and highways. And then, it’s also not super cold. It gets really hot and humid during the summer, and I can’t really stand cold weather for long.
MM: Are you enjoying yourself here at UD and in Irving?
MA: Oh, I am, yeah. I really like it here. This is my third year at UD.
MM: What are some of the biggest differences between here and Pakistan?
MA: The two major differences are religion and culture. This is a Catholic University, and then the culture is completely different. I guess that goes along with the religious. Pakistan is a declared Muslim country, so we have a lot of cultural differences, but it’s not like [Muslims] are not accepted here, so it doesn’t really make a difference. It actually gives me a better opportunity to learn about different religions and cultures and to get used to those different cultures. [Rome] had an entirely different culture.
MM: What is it like taking Catholic theology courses as someone who isn’t Catholic?
MA: It’s interesting because you get to not only read the books, but also listen to your peers and see what they have to say about it. Even though I disagree with a lot of the religious aspects over here, I still think it’s really cool, because I generally like learning about different religions. I’ve taken two theology courses, and I don’t think I’ll take more, but it was still fun taking those courses and learning about things normally people don’t know who are from other religions.
MM: When you graduate from UD, are you going back home or staying in America?
MA: I’m not sure yet. There are a couple of options for me right now. I could either do the 4-1 program, which would give me a masters, and then I could work. The other option is to go back home and be the entrepreneur that I’ve always wanted to be. So I’m not sure about that, but we’ll see. I don’t think I’ll stay in America though, because I wanted a different cultural experience, and I have that, so I might go to a new place or go back home, because that’s where I want to settle eventually.
MM: How do you enjoy American sports and food?
MA: I really like soccer, and playing cricket. [Cricket] is not really common in the United States, so I definitely miss playing cricket, but soccer makes up for it. I love watching soccer, and Barcelona is my favorite team. I don’t play on the team, but I play pick-up soccer and with friends. On the team, it takes a lot of time, and it’s five days of practice, so I can’t really do that.
I really like the Californian pizza. I think that’s really good. That’s my favorite food from America.