Freshman’s YouTube Channel Clicks with International Students

Harsh Gosar

Harsh Gosar

From his home in Mumbai, India, Harsh Gosar spent hours researching everything he wanted to know about college in the United States, but he couldn’t find a comprehensive resource for undergraduate international students.

Now, the 18-year-old UT Dallas freshman manages a YouTube channel, "That Indian Guy," to help those in the same situation.

“I’m a person who would rather watch a five-minute video than read an article,” Gosar said. “I find videos to be more effective.”

Gosar, a computer science major who aims to become a mobile developer, said he began seriously working on the channel last August. Featuring 65-plus videos, "That Indian Guy" today has more than 356,000 total views and more than 8,000 subscribers.

Gosar said he initially was inspired by time spent at EducationUSA, also known in India as USIEF, a U.S. Department of State network of international student advising centers.

“I gained a lot from their sessions, but their offices were located only in select cities around the world, and there are many interested students in other cities,” Gosar said. “I would jot down notes from their sessions and share the information in my videos.”

The need for an online resource proved to be great. Gosar said it took just seven days to reach 1,000 subscribers.

“That overwhelmed me,” he said. “I realized there were so many people out there wanting this information, and I thought, ‘I’ve got to share this.’” 

I’m really passionate about this project. I’m able to help more and more people, and I have received hundreds of personal messages through different platforms with students saying ‘thank you.’

Harsh Gosar
computer science freshman

Gosar’s most popular videos focus on how to study for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), writing tips for application essays and how to pay for a U.S. education. These videos require hours of research, he said, and he independently plans, shoots and edits them on his smartphone.

Gosar soon began receiving feedback from students with suggested topics.

Just days before coming to UT Dallas — and to the United States for the first time — in January, he covered what to pack and skills to learn before moving.

More recently, Gosar’s videos have taken on a vlog format. He gives viewers a glimpse inside a dorm room, the dining hall or his backpack. He shares lessons he has learned, like how to adjust to American units of measurement and why being punctual is important for appointments.

Jennifer Smith, assistant director of intercultural programs at UT Dallas’ International Center, first came across Gosar’s channel through a video posted on a student group’s Facebook page.

Smith said international students face an adjustment when first moving to the United States, and Gosar’s videos provide pertinent information.  

“I think it’s wonderful for current students to find ways to reach out to students back home,” Smith said. “As much as we try to connect with prospective students through emails, websites and social media, when information comes directly from a student, it’s really heard and extremely valued.”

Himesh Annam, a graduate student from India in supply chain management, found Gosar’s videos informative when researching college application procedures. The two later met at an event hosted by the International Student Services Office, and Annam immediately recognized Gosar.

“Back in India, there were many websites created for the GRE and TOEFL preparations, and people used to share Harsh’s videos about universities here,” Annam said. “His channel also gives good insight about how students could cope with the culture change.”

Gosar said he struggles to find time to maintain his studies and continue making videos — while also participating in the Indian Students Association, the Rotaract Club and activities like salsa dancing class. He credits the process with teaching him time management.

“I’m really passionate about this project,” Gosar said. “I’m able to help more and more people, and I have received hundreds of personal messages through different platforms with students saying ‘thank you.’”

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].

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