I could not be luckier to be a part of the OU Cousins program, an organization that matches international students with American ones in order to foster new friendships and cultural ties. On the day of the matching party, I was extremely worried that I would not find a cousin, as I had heard rumors that there were far more Americans than international students to be matched with. Arriving late because of previous obligations, I was immediately overwhelmed by the manner in which we were meant to meet international students. I attempted conversations, but was forced to switch to speak with new people every few minutes. Then, I met Olivia, a student from the south of France. In my nervousness, it was difficult to strike up a conversation at first. But I could tell we would be friends; there was a connection there. Immediately, something threatened our possible friendship: another girl interrupted our conversation - quite rudely - and introduced herself with a commandeering attitude, as if she wanted to steal Olivia away! But after she finally realized that a cousin agreement had already almost been established, she backed off. Olivia and I agreed to sign up as each other's cousin, much to my excitement!
Being Olivia's OU cousin has turned out better than I could have ever expected. We meet up nearly every weekend, attending international events, baking cookies, and watching movies together. She is in a STEM field and I a journalism one, but we still find things in common, from our love of travel to our taste in movies! Olivia is one of my closest friends here at OU, and without a doubt one of the most caring, intelligent, and sweetest people I know. I am lucky to have met her and to have fostered such an amazing friendship, with the help of the OU Cousins program.