In their own words - Xiaoyi Dong
February 1, 2016

NSCAD University has a long history of working with international artists, craftspeople and designers because we understand the value of cultural diversity and relate to each through the universal language of art, craft and design. We welcome students from all over the world to study at NSCAD and provide study abroad opportunities for our full-time students.

In this occasional series by Joann Reynolds-Farmer, NSCAD’s Coordinator, Off Campus, International and Advisiing, we’ll share with you the stories of international and exchange students in their own words. The series begins with Xiaoyi Dong (Patrice), an international student from China who is in her first year at NSCAD.  Patrice is also the international student representative on SUNSCAD. 


Xiaoyi Dong (Patrice).

Xiaoyi Dong (Patrice):

I was studying in an international high school with teachers mostly from Canada. By talking with my teachers, I started to know about the life and universities of art and design in Canada. Looking through the viewbook of NSCAD by chance helped me to make my decision of going to NSCAD.

I believed I would find my own way of making art, and I would discover a lot of things and explore further on my interested field which is design. I am a person who would like to challenge myself here in NSCAD, and I cannot wait to see how far I can go in design. After I came here, I am so glad with my decision because I enjoyed my courses and the learning environment in Halifax with galleries and parks. 

In my first year, I gained great experience with my courses. The courses are pretty intense and they are just the beginning of everything. I was amazed when I realized what I learned and what I had done and achieved in the first semester. I edited my essays over and over again with the help from the writing centre. I noticed there were so many techniques and materials that I had never worked with before; I started to think critically and creatively. By the end of my degree program, I hope I will discover my own style of making art and clearly know which kind of design is the best for me by taking challenges and trying new things.

Before I came here, I was very conservative. Here, I found myself being braver and more active. With a foundation course called Radical Form, which aims to push the boundaries of art, I did something like performance art and conceptual art that I had never expected to try.

I totally have a lot of fun in my foundation year. I am going to amazing classes and meeting nice friends. Being involved in the student union also allows me to learn more about school and challenge myself on problem-solving skills and interpersonal skills. I would like to try my best to try anything at NSCAD with my curiosity and passion fully engaged.


International students at NSCAD have a Facebook page. Please see:

NSCAD International Students