The University of Oklahoma International Student Services (OU ISS) staff has many years of experience working with international students, and actively seeks professional training and professional development opportunities through a variety of channels. Many of us have lived outside the US for extended periods of time, often as international students ourselves.
F-1 advisor for international students with family names starting with S-V and Z
Jalal comes to OU from the University of Central Oklahoma Office of Global Affairs, International Student Department, where he served as Assistant Director and PDSO for 32 years. He greatly enjoys helping international students and has traveled to over 20 countries. Jalal earned his Associate's degree from Rose State College and his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of Central Oklahoma. Originally from Iran, he came to Oklahoma as an international student after finishing high school.
Jalal is married and has a daughter, who is a freshman in college. Outside of work, he is an active participant in community organizations including the Edmond Kiwanis Club, United Nations Association of Oklahoma City, Edmond Soccer Club, City of Edmond Transportation Committee, and Oklahoma Soccer Association. His hobby is everything soccer and he has played throughout his life, coached youth and adult teams, and refereed youth and adult games.
Assistant Director of Advising
F-1 advisor for international students with family names starting with A-D and X
As Assistant Director of Advising, Elsa oversees the advising staff to maintain consistent advising to international students.
Elsa is originally from Texas and currently resides in Oklahoma City. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a minor in International Studies at the University of Central Oklahoma. She has traveled abroad to Iceland, Russia, Japan, South Korea and Mexico. In her spare time, she enjoys working on her art projects.
Assistant Director of Operations and Exchange Student Coordinator
Advisor for all Exchange Students and F-1 Advisor for students with family names starting with P-R and Y
As Assistant Director of Operations, Rhonda oversees the front office staff and maintains cohesion between front office staff and advising staff.
As the Exchange Student Coordinator, Rhonda welcomes new exchange students to Oklahoma. Rhonda's family has Oklahoma roots going back to the Territorial period, and she has lived in Norman since the age of ten. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma and is currently working on a master’s degree. In her free time, Rhonda enjoys bicycling and traveling. Past destinations include Mexico, Turkey, and Malta. Rhonda resides in Norman with her family and pets.
Youssef coordinates NISO Connection for new international students and other engaging programs for international students throughout the year.
Youssef is a former international student from Egypt. He came to OU from Giza after making a two-year stop in Wales to attend UWC Atlantic College in 2014. Youssef graduated in 2020 with a B.A. in International Studies and Religious Studies and in 2022 earned his M.A. in International Studies with a focus on the SWANA (aka MENA) region.
Youssef loves learning about languages (stop by to say hi in Arabic or Spanish), religions, and history. He loves watching TV, reading novels and cooking, especially food from home. Youssef is concerned with ensuring that the international student community has a seat at the table, that its voice is heard in all its diversity, and that bridges are built across communities.
International Student Advisors and International Student Programs Coordinator
International Student Advisor
F-1 Advisor for students with family names starting with E-L
Brenda advises students and the university community regarding student immigration regulations including travel, employment, and maintenance of status. Brenda holds a BBA in Finance from OU.
Nwannedinma Elizabeth Greb
International Student Advisor
F-1 Advisor for students with family names starting with X-Z
Nwannedinma advises students and the university community regarding student immigration regulations including travel, employment, and maintenance of status. She loves meeting people from different cultures and enjoy eating cuisines from different countries.
Nwannedinma is a former international student herself, originally from Nigeria. She earned a B.A. in Mass Communication from Ebonyi State University, Nigeria and as well as earning two Master’s degrees, Human Resources and Management, from East Central University, Ada, Oklahoma.
Sponsored Student Programs Coordinator
F-1 Advisor for all sponsored students and students with family names starting with M-O and W, J-1 Advisor for all student interns, J-1 degree-seeking students, J-1 sponsored students
Mukarram advises students and the university community regarding student immigration regulations including: travel, employment, and maintenance of status. Mukarram is originally from Gaza-Palestine. She holds a B.A. in English Literature and Education from Al-Azhar University in Gaza-Palestine. She also holds Master’s degree in Human Relations, and a graduate certificate in Human Resources and Organizational Diversity and Development from the University of Oklahoma.
F-1 Advisor for newly admitted students, CESL students, and international students on the OU Tulsa campus
Alina advises newly admitted students on the process to obtain an I-20 and apply for an F-1 visa. For CESL and Tulsa students, she advises students and the university community regarding student immigration regulations including travel, employment, and maintenance of status.
Alina is originally from Romania. She is a former student-athlete in track and field from University of Texas at El Paso, where she earned her Bachelor's degree in Kinesiology. She earned her Master's degree at OU in Exercise Physiology while working as a graduate assistant in the Bone Density Research Laboratory. She loves meeting people from all over the world, learning about different cultures and languages and she has visited about 20 countries so far. Her favorites are Mexico, Spain, Greece and Romania for the people, flavorful food and rich history. She also loves road trips and spending time in nature hiking and birding.
International Student Programs Coordinator
Karen coordinates engaging programs for international students throughout the year as well as serving as the International Advisory Committee staff advisor.
She is a former international student from El Salvador, studied at UWC in India, then came to OU in 2019 and earned a B.A. in Communication. Her leisure activities include watching movies, dramas, music, and literature. She holds a strong dedication to ensuring the international community has their own space and representation at the university.
Front Office Coordinator
Ben helps international students with basic information in maintaining their F-1 or J-1 status. He supports the International Student Services staff in daily office operations.
As the Database Analyst, Brandi maintains our specialized software, online forms, document storage, performs reporting, compiles statistics, checks various alerts from SEVIS and internal lists to ensure institutional compliance, and manages mass email communication to our international students. These are critical to assist international students in maintaining status.
She was an F-1 Advisor from 2012 through 2022. She has traveled abroad to South Korea and China. She holds a BS in Psychology from Oklahoma State University. She's currently learning Turkish from her husband, a native of Turkey.