Marcel Soubrovsky Clemente, 20 years old, left São Paulo, Brazil, to go live abroad and study petroleum engineering at UAF.
Why Choosing UAF/Fairbanks?
Clemente lived all his life in Brazil, mainly in São Paulo but he traveled all around his home country. He decided to go abroad for the first time in his life about a year ago. He chose the United States. “Mainly because of my field of study: petroleum engineering,” Clemente said. After researching about the different schools and places he messaged some UAF students on Facebook to make sure UAF was a good place for him and his degree.
What does he do in his study?
Clemente chose UAF because of the Petroleum Engineering program. He worked with his professor Dr. Shirish Patil to develop software to calculate the pressure inside. They built it from what the professor will need to teach his students. “The software calculates the pressure in different parts of a pipe with multiple fluids,” Clemente said, “such as water, oil, gas.” His professor will use the software for basic calculations in his Introduction to Petroleum Engineering, Drilling class. The software will be “in a friendly platform,” Clemente said, “it will run on Windows, Mac, Linux and even smartphones.”
UAF in one word: ‘Awesome experience’
Fairbanks and UAF was a totally new experience for Clemente. “My university was in Santos,” Clemente said, “I could see the sea from our windows.”
Fairbanks was a challenge and a big change for Clemente. Instead of the sea, the beach and the sun, he experienced mountains, snow, and -40°F. “It is a different place,” Clemente said, “not like anything else.”
Outside his studies he was able to experience and enjoy winter and summer Alaska. He loves photography, “every night I would go outside and take pictures of the Northern Lights,” Clemente said. During the summer, he takes his bike at least twice a week to take pictures of Alaska’s beauty. He also participated to expositions, such as “The Night Sky.”
His favorite thing about Fairbanks and UAF are the landscapes.
‘Search for Adventures’
Clemente is having a great experience at UAF and he has few tips for the future exchange students.
“Go to Outdoor Adventures.” Outdoor Adventures rent equipment to experience Alaska’s many adventures possibilities. They also offer trips, organized by UAF, to experience Alaska fully and to meet new people. It is a great way to see around Alaska, especially without a car.
“Search for the activities.” UAF has a lot of activities all around campus, from sports to board game to photography and theater. There is something for everyone’s interest. (Come see our “What to do at UAF” page for more details.)
“Try to meet people.” UAF and Fairbanks are “full of interesting people,” meeting people is a big part of your experience wherever you are. People living in Alaska are from all over the world and have stories and experiences to share. Also, people from here will have seen so much more of Alaska. “You can learn from their experiences,” Clemente said.
Where does he come from?
Clemente is from São Paulo, the biggest city in Brazil. There is about 20 million people, a big change from the almost 32 thousand inhabitants of Fairbanks. “It is more crowded than New York,” Clemente said.
His university in Santos is about an hour away from São Paulo. Clemente’s experience at UAF is going well but he still misses the beach, “I used to walk on the beach everyday after class,” Clemente said. Brazil has a lot of delicious food that Clemente can’t have here, such as “brigadeiro,” made out of chocolate, sweetened condensed milk and chocolate sprinkles.
One of Clemente’s favorite things here was the campus. Through the activities on campus and outside the campus he plainly enjoyed his experience here. In Brazil, as many part of the world, there are no campuses. The U.S. is one of the countries where college is not only studying but also about experiencing and enjoying your youth. Campuses make it easier for students to meet people but also to learn and experience the part of the country where your campus is.
His next adventures
Clemente will leave UAF on August 3rd but he is not done traveling. After the end of his research project he will be going back to Brazil and start a new adventure in Pau, France in 2016.