Meet our Team

Parinaz Zartoshty

Parinaz Zartoshty
Director of International Student & Scholar Services

-  PDSO/RO
-  Institutional immigration policies
-  J-1 scholars
-  Campus Fulbright Liaison
-  Liaison duties: Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, University Personnel

Parinaz is originally from Tehran, Iran and earned her Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in Government/International Relations and her Master’s degree in International Relations from Boston University. Parinaz entered the field of international education after having worked for Amnesty International, UNICEF and other smaller nonprofits, both in the US and internationally. She speaks several languages including Farsi, French and German. Parinaz studied abroad in Paris, France. Having gone through the US immigration process and the acculturation process several times, she enjoys and finds fulfillment in facilitating the process for others.

#whatsforlunch

Parinaz loves all international cuisine, especially Japanese, Mexican and Korean. She also loves her dessert and appreciates any sweet delights.

 

   
 spartan up Keri Toma

International Programs Manager 

-  Co-curricular programming for international students and scholars
-  Global Spartan Welcome  and management of Global Leaders
-  Global Student Network (GSN), staff co-advisor
-  Liaison duties: Writing Center, Student Involvement, Associated Students, Career Center, New Student & Family Programs.
-  Please contact regarding possible collaborations on programs or events with ISSS.


Originally from Maui, Hawaii, Keri earned her Bachelor’s in Asian Studies and East Asian Languages & Literature from the University of Oregon and both her M.A. in Teaching Foreign Language and M.A. in International Education Management from the Monterey Institute of International Studies (MIIS). Keri has a decade of experience teaching in higher education, where she worked with students to ensure academic success in the classroom. In recent years, she has enjoyed working with international students and scholars outside of the classroom through peer mentorship programs, leadership development programs, and events designed to bring together the international community. Having lived abroad in Japan, Keri understands what it’s like to adjust to and live in a new culture. She was welcomed and well-supported by her community in Hiroshima, and hopes to do the same for international students and scholars here at San Jose State.

#whatsforlunch

Usually a salad, but she’d love to have a homemade bento everyday.

 

Khim Lok

Khim Lok
Office Coordinator 

-  DSO/ARO
-  Front office operations
-  Management of student assistants
-  Insurance specialist
-  Intake for J-1 scholars
-  Liaison duties: Student Health Insurance and the Student Health Center. 

Khim is from Union City / Milpitas, California and is an SJSU alum, having earned her Bachelor’s degree in Child Development. Khim inadvertently entered the field of international education during her freshman year at SJSU when she worked as a Student Assistant and has since remained in the field. As a first generation immigrant and the first in her family to attend college, she understands some of the difficulties international student experience both academically and culturally. In addition, she has had to help her family navigate the immigration process when they first came to the U.S.  She has a strong interest in geopolitical issues and believes we live in a “small world”. She enjoys international travels whenever possible.

#whatsforlunch

Some of Khim’s favorite places to grab lunch near campus are: HOM for Korean, Agave Mexican Grill for Mexican; and Pizza My Heart (for pizza). Khim believes strongly that ice cream can be substituted for any meal, cake is best at breakfast, and wearing nail polish at all times is a must. Go Warriors!

 

   
 Linda Harris

 

Linda Harris
International Student Advisor

-  DSO/ARO
-  F-1 and J-1 student advising
Facilitator of workshops on F-1 and J-1 matters 

- Liaison duties:College of Education; Health and Human Services; School of Information; Civil & Environmental Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; Graduate Advising; Academic Advising & Retention Services

Linda grew up in the Midwest. She now calls San Jose home after moving to California six years ago and having lived in different cities. Linda earned her Bachelor’s degree in Biology and East Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Kansas. She has been in the international field for more than 15 years. She has worked at a community college, private research institute, various universities, having held multiple positions in human resources, international student and scholar services. Linda enjoys meeting new students and scholars from all over the world. She finds it rewarding to help others fulfill their professional, academic, and personal goals. In her free time Linda likes to swim, quilt, or play video games.

#whatsforlunch

Usually leftovers. Linda likes to cook and bake.

 

   
James T. Coon

James T. Coon
International Student Advisor 

-  DSO/ARO
-  F-1 and J-1 student advising 
-  Facilitator of workshops on F-1 and J-1 matters
-  Editor of ISSS Newsletter 
-  Liaison duties: Electrical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, College of Humanities and the Arts, Career Services

James has lived all over the country, but he’s lived in Central California, specifically San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, for the longest period of time. He double-majored in German Studies and History at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) for his Bachelor's degrees, and earned his M.S.Ed in College Counseling and Student Affairs from Monmouth University in New Jersey. He’s studied abroad in Germany and Mexico on several occasions and is a proud Fulbright Fellow as a former ETA (English Teaching Assistant) in Germany. James is fluent in German and can speak Spanish proficiently, and he’s currently improving his Italian. James has a passion for learning languages, reading, cooking and trying new recipes, traveling, hiking, camping, and going to the beach.

#whatsforlunch

James loves anything spicy, namely, Thai, Mexican, and Korean cuisine. James just also loves to cook in general, specializing in Italian, German, and Mexican dishes. James is a fanatic about barbecue and will attempt to barbecue anything at least once.

 

Soo-Jin

Soo-Jin Sohn
International Student Advisor
 

-  DSO
-  F-1 student advising 
-  Facilitator of workshops on F-1 matters
-  Liaison duties: Aviation & Technology, Industrial & Systems Engineering, College of Science

A Bay Area native, Soo-Jin earned her Bachelor’s degree in French Literature from UC Berkeley. As an undergraduate student, she studied abroad in France for a year at L’Université de Lyon II. She loved Lyon so much that she ended up staying for another year to work as an English language assistant at a French high school. Through her travels in Europe, she developed an interest in international education and cross-cultural exchange. Her study abroad experience became the catalyst for pursuing graduate studies in International Educational Development at Teachers College, Columbia University. During her time in New York, she worked as an international credential evaluator and volunteered at various interfaith organizations. Soo-Jin has diverse interests in fitness, travel, movies, and fall foliage.

#whatsforlunch

A carb lover, Soo-Jin enjoys noodles, sweet potato fries and Korean rice cakes.

 

Sarah

Sarah Layne
International Student Advisor
 

-  DSO
-  F-1 student advising 
-  Facilitator of workshops on F-1 matters
-  Liaison duties:
African-American Studies, Asian-American Studies, Chicana and Chicano Studies, CPGE School of Information, Hospitality Tourism and Event Management, Justice Studies, Nutrition Food Science and Packaging, School of Journalism and Mass Communications, The Valley Foundation School of Nursing, Women Gender and Sexuality Studies

Sarah is local to Northern California and has spent many years in the Central Valley and Foothills of California. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Communication from the University of the Pacific in Stockton, CA and her Master of Education in Education Policy, Organization, and Leadership from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She has lived in various states and has been an advisor to domestic and international students, including fraternities and sororities as well as student facility management. She enjoys engaging with various forms of entertainment such as film, theatre, and stand-up comedy. She has music playing whenever she can!

#whatsforlunch

Sarah enjoys a wide variety of foods, but believes you can't go wrong with a good turkey sandwich. She could, however, eat breakfast food all day! #brinner

 

Evelyn Tsao

Evelyn Tsao
SEVIS Compliance Coordinator

-  DSO/ARO
-  Data Specialist
-  Manages the University's interface with SEVIS
-  F-1 and J-1 student advising 
-  Facilitates workshops on F-1 and J-1 matters
-  Liaison duties: Lucas College and Graduate School of Business, Undergraduate Admissions, Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations, Bursar's Office

Evelyn is from Hebei, China. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in English Education from Hebei Normal University and her M.Ed. in Educational Administration and Leadership from The State University of New York at Buffalo. Evelyn grew up in China and came to the U.S. in 2007 for her graduate program in Educational Administration and Leadership. As she was an international student herself, she understands the academic difficulties and cultural shock that many international students encounter both physically and mentally. Her passion for her work comes from helping international students adapt to the American culture and thrive in their educational goals here in the United States. In her advising, she always aims to simplify the complexities of the immigration regulations for international students to increase their understanding and knowledge. Evelyn's hobbies are reading books and watching documentaries related to history. She also enjoys international travel because she gets an opportunity to see and learn about the history, cultures, and experiences in the various parts of the world.

#whatsforlunch

Evelyn's favorite places to grab lunch near campus includes Lee's Sandwiches, Agave Mexican Grill, and Back A Yard Caribbean Grill. She loves all international cuisine.

 

   
Ariel Tam

Lena Meadows
SEVIS Records Coordinator

-  DSO
-  Data support specialist
-  Co-facilitates workshops and presentations
-  Liaison duties: Anthropology (including Behavioral Science), Environmental Studies, Geography, Global Studies, History

Lena grew up in Napa, California. She graduated from SJSU with a double major in Global Studies and Japanese. She studied abroad for her junior year at Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan. After coming back from Japan, she worked as a Study Abroad Student Assistant at the ISSS office. Both her experiences of studying abroad and working with international students sparked her interest in the international field. She is fluent in Japanese and her hobbies are reading books and watching football.

#Whatsforlunch

Lena enjoys all kinds of foods but Asian cuisine is her          favorite. However, she prefers sandwiches for lunch because they are quick and easy to make in the morning.

 

   
Kenneth Ing

Kenneth Ing
SEVIS Records Coordinator

-  DSO
-  Data support specialist
-  Co-facilitates workshops and presentations
-  Liaison duties:  Communication Studies, Economics, Data Analytics, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology and Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Social Science Teacher Preparation Program, Social Science Credential Program, Urban & Regional Planning

Kenneth is a native of Florida and graduated from the University of Miami with a double major in Ecosystem Science & Policy and Geography. After graduation, he spent five years working in Japan as part of the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme, before returning to the States. He also worked as a Disability Adjudicator for the State of Florida and the Social Security Administration before making his way over to the West Coast.

#Whatsforlunch

Usually, leftovers from yesterday’s dinner: Pan-fried Chicken and veggies, Cottage Pie, Japanese Curry, and Soy-Dijon Chicken and Sweet Potatoes are typical staples. Oh, and cookies.

 

David (Yonggwan) Park
Student Assistant

David is an undergraduate Industrial Design student from Korea. He has studied in the U.S. since high school and is very familiar with the San Jose area. He has worked in the ISSS office since summer 2018 and enjoys photography as a hobby. His go-to place to grab near campus is Banh Mi Oven and his favorite type of food is hotpot.

 

Sukhjit Johal
Student Assistant

Sukhjit Johal is a senior at San Jose State University majoring in Justice Studies with a minor in Economics. She is a first generation student, a Dean’s Scholar and is actively engaged in her community through non-profit and professional organizations. She has served as the President of the Global Student Network, contributing towards an increase in global awareness of many diverse cultures to her campus community. Sukhjit loves outdoor adventures which include fireflies! She’s also a big fan of pizza, burritos, and spicy Indian food.

 

Haojun Song
Student Assistant

Haojun Song is a student majoring in Biology who comes from Beijing, China. His role in the ISSS office is to assist in programming /event planning for students and scholars and helps cover the front desk from time to time. He is a firm believer in the power of positive thinking in the workplace. He likes to work out and outdoor activities like surfing and hiking. His favorite restaurant around campus is Punjab Cafe, Hom restaurant and Spoonfish Poke.