2021 Photo Contest Winners

The Global Spartan Photo Contest is an annual event that coincides with our Global Spartan Month festivities. Each year, we ask San Jose State University students to share their unique cultural perspective through photos and short narrative. Photos could be taken anywhere in the world (including the U.S.) and must be accompanied by a brief description that responds to the questions: What aspect of culture does this photo represent? Why is this photo important to me? 

The Global Spartan Month Planning Committee selects the winner of the Most Impactful Narrative prize and also determines our set of finalists. Finalists then have their photographs and narratives posted on our Instagram and Facebook pages, where our first, second, and third place Fan Favorite winners are determined by the public.

Thank you to everyone who submitted a photo entry and to all those who voted. Congratulations to all our finalists and a special congratulations to our winners! 

Winner: Most Impactful Narrative

Thi (Blue) Nguyen, MA Journalism & Mass Communication

Gregory Johnson–A decade doesn’t ease the pain. (San Jose, CA)

“Gregory Johnson’s death is a controversial topic, especially in SJSU community. I took this photo at a protest on October 10, 2020, where Gregory’s mother shared why she believed her son was killed as a result of racism, objecting to the police’s conclusion that he suicided. After 12 years, the pain is still in her eyes. This is how I learn about the real agony of racism, and also, about sympathy.”

Fan Favorite: First Place

Aadesh Sharma, MS Industrial Engineering 

Famous Dagduseth Ganesh Temple Pune (Pune, India) 

“This photo was clicked during the Ganesh Chaturthi, one of the widely celebrated hindu festival in India. This is culturally important for me because it teaches us how we should come together and help each other in need. During the tough Covid times we all are connected to each other through praying Lord Ganesha helping to fight this pandemic. With the blessings of God our life will be normal again.”

Fan Favorite: 2nd Place

Rachael Allen, BS Biochemistry

Queen’s Life Guard Ceremony (London, England) 

“For many centuries horses have been an essential part of England’s majesty in warfare and royal and state occasions. This photo represents how a country can keep the rich history of its past while celebrating its heritage and reminding all of its accomplishments, but also recognizing its injustices. This photo is important to me because I believe that the history of the past should not be lost.”

Fan Favorite: 3rd Place

Juwon (Kelly) Lee, BA Graphic Design

Welcome to Korea (South Korea) 

“Lotte World Tower is the tallest building in South Korea and the fifth tallest in the world with 123 floors. People can find the aspects of Korean food and fashion, as well as the beautiful nightlife of Korea inside of the tower. This tower has gained a reputation as one of Korea’s most frequently visited tourist places and it also became a symbol of the country’s economic advancement.”

Job Search Success Panel

As part of our Global Spartan Month celebration, we’re collaborating with the Career Center to bring you a special international student and alumni career panel, Strategies for Job Search Success on March 18, 2021 from 4:00-5:00 pm (register here).

Our panel features two current international students and two recent graduates, who will share their experience searching for job and internship opportunities in the U.S. The panel will be moderated by International Student Advisor James Coon and Career Counselor Judi Garcia. This is a great opportunity to hear advice from peers, ask questions, and expand your network by connecting with our panelists. 

Learn more about our panel!

Sadaqatali Mirza

Sadaqatali Mirza is from Mumbai, India and is a Test Engineer at Apple Inc. with specialization in mechanical design and testing. He collaborates in new product launch activities to perform tests on various Apple products and develop test plans. Sadaqat received his M.S degree in mechanical engineering from San Jose State University and was awarded two scholarships for his academic performance and on-campus involvement. While in school, Sadaqat enjoyed participating in events designed to bring together the international community and is driven to help international students succeed in the U.S.

Joy Seet

Joy Seet is a designer based in San Francisco. She was born and raised in Singapore, and recently graduated from B.A Design Studies at San Jose State University in June 2020. She has interned at Ogilvy and WPP, and discovered her interest in the marketing side of design. Joy is now a designer at TikTok, where she helps brands invent and launch legendary creative solutions that help brands and creative companies thrive on TikTok. Joy is also an advocate for helping graduating students navigate and launch their career journey. She is excited to share some tips and advice to international students wanting to succeed.

Mindy Trieu is an international student from Vietnam who has been studying in the U.S. for seven years.

Mindy Trieu

She earned her B.A. degree in Advertising from the University of Florida in 2018 and later moved to San Jose State University to pursue her MBA with a concentration in Business Analytics. Mindy currently serves as a Global Leader and iSucceed Advisory Board Member for International Student & Scholar Services and as an Instructional Student Assistant for the Jack Holland School of Business Success Center. On the way to making her first steps in achieving her career goals, Mindy would be happy to share her experiences with other international students and see everyone succeed together.

Vicky Vo

Vicky Vo is an Award-Winning UX Designer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She was a Product Design Intern at DoorDash, a former Lead UX Designer at OrthoFX, and recently joined Jumpstart as a Product Designer. Vicky is currently a senior B.A Design Student at SJSU. Besides school and work, Vicky co-founded Students of UXD, an international community for students of all ages who are pursuing UX Design. Her broad background in UX, Visual Design, Psychology, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship has helped various startups to launch several digital products from scratch. 

We hope you’ll join us for this event and more during Global Spartan Month! Follow us on Instagram for the latest updates.

Global Spartan Month 2021

ISSS and our College of Professional and Global Education (CPGE) partners are pleased to bring you Global Spartan Month during the month of March. Join us in celebrating international education and cultural exchange through a series of workshops, fun social activities, and our Global Spartan Photo Contest!

View our website for a full calendar of events, and follow us on Instagram (@SJSUinternational) for the latest event updates. 

Here are a few events that might be of particular interest to International Students:

Make Connections (Social Events)

    • Global Connections: Mondays at 11:00 AM-12:00 PM (PT). Topics include Celebrating Women’s History Month (Mar. 1), International Games (Mar. 8), Managing Perfektionism (Mar. 15), and Persian New Year Celebrations (Mar. 22)
    • ISSS x SAA x GSN Social Mixer: March 5 | 3:00-4:00 PM (PT)). Have fun playing games and meeting your peers. Hosted by ISSS, Study Abroad & Away, and the Global Student Network.
    • Thursday Tea Time: Thursdays at 3:00-4:00 PM (PT). Join this casual, peer-led weekly meetup to destress and connect with fellow international students.

Workshops

    • Sprintax Non-resident Tax Webinar for SJSU Students: March 3 | 1:00-2:00 PM (PT) Presented by Sprintax Tax Experts
    • Writing Workshop: Common Grammar & Punctuation Errors: March 10 | 12:00-1:00 PM (PT) Presented by the writing center
    • Strategies for Job Search Success: International Student & Alumni Panel: March 18 | 4:00-5:00 PM (PT) Panel includes 2 current international students and 2 SJSU international alumni who work for Apple and TikTok.

Food & Culture

    • Global Leader Chat on American Slang & Culture: March 3 | 7:00-8:00 PM (PT). Global Leaders share their experience and insight with American slang and culture.
    • Cultural Conversations: Exploring Social Justice: March 11 | 7:30-8:30 PM (PT) Presented by the MOSAIC Cross-Cultural Center, this interactive session is a chance to better understand what social justice means and how it impacts our lives.
    • Eating & Cooking in the U.S.: March 5, 12, 19 | 12:00-12:45 PM (PT) Presented by students in the Nutrition & Food Science program, this 3-part series was designed to help international students navigate food-related challenges such as where to access groceries on a budget, how to eat healthy in the U.S., and tips for cooking in a U.S. kitchen.

We hope you’ll join us for one or many events during Global Spartan Month! Follow us on Instagram for the latest updates.