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Oumy Ndoye: ‘Lyon shaped me into who I am’

For senior Oumy Ndoye, adjusting to college also meant adjusting to life in a new country.

Originally from Dakar, Senegal, Ndoye first came to the United States as a high school junior through a student exchange program. She said the experience was intimidating at first.

“When I first came here, I was 17 years old with no English.”

Ndoye spent her freshman and sophomore years of college in Oklahoma, transferring to Lyon College as a junior. She was drawn to the College because of its small community atmosphere.

“What I liked about Lyon was the family setting and the fact that it’s a small town where everybody knows each other.”

Ndoye continued, “Being an international student, you want to have help from people because when you move to a town you basically don’t know anything there.”

While at Lyon, she played on the women’s basketball team and was a member of the International Student Association and the Black Student Association. 

She graduated in December with a major in business administration.

“I will miss my friends definitely and playing sports at Lyon because those were the best years. I definitely miss basketball now.”

One of Ndoye’s proudest accomplishments was perfecting her English.

“My English has gotten better. I got help from a lot of my professors with that.”

She said she is grateful to so many faculty and staff members who helped her during college, especially International Student Advisor Joni Bube.

Ndoye wants to play basketball overseas and obtain a master’s degree in the future. Once travel is safe, she plans to go to Italy first because her family is there.

She said she matured a lot while at Lyon.

“College was such a big part of my life because I met the best people there, and Lyon basically shaped me into who I am.”

Ndoye continued, “I had no parents here. I was by myself. I had to be on my own and make my own decisions.”

She encourages Lyon students to enjoy their college experience while they can.

“It’s not going to last forever, and you’re definitely going to miss it when it’s gone.”