Archived Stories
Kindnesses to international students: never forgotten
Ball State alumni from Africa and Europe nominated five individuals whose help during their student days in Muncie will never be forgotten. The 2003 Favorite Friend nominators included graduates from the 1970s and a special student on campus for only one year in the 1990s.

1976 MBA graduate Johannes (John) Daneel, Stellenbosch, South Africa nominated his “’host parent”’ Mrs. Denise (DuVal) Doz, a Ball State graduate and former Muncie resident, now living in Vermont. Daneel noted that when he was admitted to hospital soon after arrival in Indiana, Mrs. Doz “nursed me through that, looked after me for 16 months and made sure that all I could hope for was done… a wonderful person and ambassador for BSU, Muncie and the USA.”

During her exchange year 1992-3 with the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP), Dutch-born Alida “Rosalie” Kuip was assigned to Parker City residents Donna and Lee Dye. The Dye family has befriended many foreign students, some through Lee’s work while a faculty member in Ball State’s College of Business. Said Rosalie: “Lee and Donna made me feel right at home…from the moment they picked me up from the Muncie airport. On the practical side, they gave me all kinds of information, drove me to Wal-Mart to buy stuff I needed for my dorm room and lent me all kinds of things, like a bicycle. But more important, they were like family in times I was lonely and and needed to get away from campus life. They invited me over many times, without me feeling obligated to go, and I could always bring a friend. We’d bake cookies, watch movies, and go on day trips through beautiful Indiana. It’s 10 years ago now, and I still often think of Lee and Donna with great fondness. We keep in touch through e-mail and postcards, and hopefully we’ll meet again in person one day.”

Longtime Friendship Family Graham and Gloria Robinson were saddened to learn that their nominator for Favorite Friend, Thomas Tenjoh-Okwen MA ’74 (Cameroon) passed away soon after submitting his nomination in 2002.  Of the Robinsons, Tenjoh-Okwen wrote “This family was my second family in every respect when I was at BSU. They did everything to please me. I was a bachelor then, today, they have extended the same hospitality to my daughter studying in North Carolina.”

This year’s Favorite Friend awards will be presented Friday, February 7, 2003 at the annual International Dinner held in the Pittenger Student Center.