Nyarie Sirewu

  • Major: International Development Studies and Public Health
  • Grad Year: 2018
  • Hometown: Harare, Zimbabwe

" I feel valued as a person rather than just as a student." - Nyarie Sirewu '18

What was the best part of being in this department?

GDS alumni keep in contact with current students and communicate job opportunities and other news related to the field. They continue to be involved in events that the college hosts and are eager to mentor students with similar interest. The GDS community is really tight-knit and cool.

What was your interaction with professors like in this department?

This department is still pretty small and so I have gotten to develop relationships with all the professors outside the classroom. I feel valued as a person rather than just as a student. The professors care very much about how the students are relating to the class content. I have also had professors suggest books, internships and fellowships to me because they know me well enough to identify things I might be interested in.

What was something unexpected you discovered about this discipline? 

The global development studies major complements every major!

What’s one thing you would want to tell someone starting their journey at Calvin?

Do not be afraid to explore courses outside your major. Be open! I cannot tell you exactly how I ended up taking the introductory class to global development studies, but here I am today, months away from graduating as a double major.

How has your faith grown at Calvin?

Since being at Calvin, I feel that I have definitely made my faith my own. Growing up I got to know God through my parents but now my relationship with Him is more personal. Sundays were for church in my house; there was no getting out of it. My parents made sure I was in church every Sunday and pushed me to participate in church activities such as youth group. At Calvin however, the decision to be in church every Sunday and to attend LOFT services has been my own. That is something I consider growth and am very proud of.

What part of Calvin’s mission resonates with you, and why?

“To act justly.” Answering the call of justice is something that I have been pursing in both my majors. Like Calvin, I acknowledge that there is a need for (more) just actors in the world. How do I work to make health care systems in the developing world more just? My hope is that at the end of my Calvin journey, I will have been equipped to carry out this passion.

What is your favorite space on campus, and why?

The Bolt-Heyns-Timmer dorm. I lived in this dorm for three years and it just serves as a reminder of the only “home” I knew for a while as an international student, the unforgettable memories I made and the life-long friendships that were formed.

Describe Calvin in three words or less (or in 140 characters).

Thought-provoking, rigorous, intimate