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King University News :: Virgin Island Students Find Second Home at King University

BRISTOL, Tenn., Feb. 6, 2014 – Through the years, global citizenship has been a part of the King University community. From across the United States and the globe, students come together and develop a broadened awareness and appreciation of diverse cultures.

In 2013, a total of 67 students from six continents and 29 countries made the decision to travel to the U.S. and attend King. Each student’s decision to choose King is different, whether for academics, athletics, or the one-on-one personalized attention for which King is known. Within those countries, four students in particular have similar roots – Rochelle Fredrick (’17), Michael Jimenez (‘17), TJ Thompson (’17), and Ajani George (’16). All hail from the U.S. Territory of the Virgin Islands, with Fredrick, Thompson, and George residing in the Virgin Islands their entire lives, while Jimenez, who originally hails from the Dominican Republic, has lived in St. Thomas for the past nine years.

Reaching out to the students from the various territories was an idea sparked by Regional Director of Tri-Cities for Enrollment Management, Elvin Browne, who himself is originally from the Virgin Islands.

“I wanted to create an opportunity for students who are U.S. citizens hailing from the territories to be able to come across the seas and go to school,” Browne said. “I remember growing up as a child - it was a dream to travel to the United States mainland for a quality education.”

Coming to the United States was a big adjustment for the students, who grew up in the Virgin Islands. When asked what the biggest difference between small town Bristol, Tenn., and a country like the Virgin Islands, Frederick summed it up perfectly.

“My favorite thing about King has to be its campus. I love the hills and all the trees and the fact that there’s this amazing view of the surrounding mountains. The climate is great too, as it is the closest I’ve ever come to experiencing a true change in seasons,” Frederick said. “After just a few days [of being on campus] I found myself loving the school’s atmosphere.”

Frederick and Thompson plan to pursue careers in Political Science, Jimenez is majoring in Forensic Science, and George is considering Athletic Training or Sports Management.

“The teachers and the other staff care a lot about the students; they assist me in everything I need,” said Jimenez.  She added, “I also like the display of the campus. It is beautiful. It is absolutely nice.” 

When asked about what it meant to have such a diverse range of students on campus, George’s answer was short and sweet.

“It’s a good thing to have diversity and to have the opportunity to get to know people on campus. Coming to King University and Bristol has been a great thing, and for that, I know I’ve been forever changed.”

Browne commented, “I feel we’ve tapped into an excellent location with a lot of interest in all the advantages that King has to offer. The response has been positive.”

Thompson describes King’s size and location as being the “perfect option for [his] new home. King University is an institution of higher learning like no other. Although the school may be small, it has a big impact on one’s educational and personal life. It is not only the teachers that want you to succeed but the faculty, staff, and even the cafeteria lady would like to see you be successful. Additionally, the southern hospitality provided at King University will make anyone feel as if they are at home.”

To learn more about international recruitment, contact Director of Undergraduate Recruitment and Admissions Elvin Browne at 800.362.0014 or or visit


King University is a Presbyterian, doctoral-level comprehensive university. Founded in 1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health sciences, pharmacy, education, and humanities.Graduate programs are offered in business administration, education, and nursing.A number of research, off-campus learning opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity sports.  For more information about King University, visit King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability.King University is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.