Chaishangling from China is studying English at the English Institute at Howard Community College in Columbia, Maryland. She plans to use her new English skills to pursue her studies in an undergraduate program.
Why did you decide to study in the USA?
The USA is one of the most developed countries of the world. I wanted to learn more about the country to open my eyes.
Why did you choose the English Institute at Howard Community College?
I chose this program because Howard County, Maryland, has one of the best educational systems in the U.S.
What do you like best?
I like making friends from different countries.
What do you miss most?
I miss the food in my country and my parents.
How has this program helped you to handle future study at a U.S. university?
I have been studying here for one year. My English is better than before. The program has helped me to improve in speaking and writing.
What was your biggest surprise?
I am surprised by how much free time I have, but there are a lot of quizzes, which is different than in my country, where there is only one admission test.
... your biggest disappointment?
There is a lot of time wasted on the road. It is hard to go anywhere without a car.
How have you handled:
... language differences?
I study hard and use a lot of hand gestures when I am speaking.
Food is more expensive here than in my country.
... adjusting to a different educational system?
The relationship between teacher and student is different in my country. Here, teachers are more like friends.
What are your activities?
I have participated in many activities, like picking strawberries, ice cream parties, and travelling to the National Zoo.
How easy or difficult was making friends?
It is easy, but sometimes I don’t know how to describe my feelings. Sometimes I don’t understand American expressions.
How relevant is your U.S. education to your personal goals and to the needs of your country?
I am opening my mind so that I can create new plans based on my new experiences.
What is your advice to other students who are considering a U.S. education?
Don’t be shy; just try!