University of Iowa

Authored by Faradis Lindblom

Diversity Ambassador Faradis Lindblom

Student Reflections on Race and Ethnicity Abroad: Fitting In as a Foreigner

With my tan skin, Arabic first name and Finnish last name, I get asked a lot of questions about my identity in the U.S. Almost every time I am introduced to someone new, I can guarantee I will be asked “What is your nationality?” or “Where are your parents from?” And although I understand that most people mean well and are just curious, there are times that I can’t help but feel out of place in my home country and even home state of Iowa.