Yaduan Chen from China is studying English in the Intensive English Program at University of Southern Indiana in Evansville, Indiana.
Why did you decide to study in the USA?
I want to learn English and talk with different people who are from different countries. In my opinion, America is the best place where we can learn English and different culture.
Why did you choose the Intensive English Program at University of Southern Indiana?
I though a lot about school when I chose my intensive English program. First of all, I hoped to choose a university that has not too many Chinese students so that I have to speak English. Second, I hoped to choose a suitable, safe place. University of Southern Indiana is located in Evansville, which is safety city. Also, the weather in Evansville is very nice. Third, University of Southern Indiana is a comprehensive university and we can take some special classes with students of other majors. It helps us to know about university. It is really a good school to learn English.
What do you like best?
I like to study in USA. I like it here because I can go to the library and gym everyday. There are also different clubs and we can join them and make friends. Also, the teachers are also very nice; they are like friends.
What do you miss most?
Of course, I feel homesick sometimes. I miss Chinese food a lot, especially seafood. I try to go to some Chinese restaurant on weekends.
How has this program helped you to handle future study at a U.S. university?
I have been here since May 2014. I’ve improved my English a lot. I was afraid about speaking English, but I can communicate with Americans now. Thanks to all of my teachers. I also learned academic words in class, and I think it will help me to study at university. We also have special pronunciation workshops that help me a lot.
What was your biggest surprise?
I am so surprised that all students in class have opportunity to share their ideas and classmates and teachers pay attention to every idea.
... your biggest disappointment?
I am very disappointed I cannot drive. Driving is very necessary in the USA.
How have you handled:
... language differences?
I think to learn English you should practice a lot, and America is the best place to practice English. So, I try to talk with Americans a lot. I also will ask my teacher some questions and study a lot by myself.
Thanks to my parents they cover all of my expenses, and I also work on campus and that helps to cover some living expenses.
... adjusting to a different educational system?
In China, teachers teach us more knowledge and they give us a standard answer. However, [in USA] we usually do more research and discuss in class, then give an answer. I think it is better to understand and get information.
What are your activities?
I will take part in traveling with school. Every holiday, school will make a plan to go different places. It is very nice, and giving me chances to travel in the USA. Also, I go to the cultural night. Every week, I can learn different cultures and taste different food as part of the housing culture nights.
How easy or difficult was making friends?
Making friends was not easy for me at first, but it was easier when I improved my English. I made friends of different cultures and I learned a lot of different cultures. Because English is my second language I made a lot of jokes. It is very funny to communicate with different people.
How relevant is your U.S. education to your personal goals and to the needs of your country?
I hope I will do business in the future, and learning English will help me to do business with different countries. Of course, as more and more people learn English, I think China will become more and more international.
What is your advice to other students who are considering a U.S. education?
Learning English in America is a good choice, and we have more chance to use English here at University of Southern Indiana. What is more, as an English learner, do not be shy, and practice will help you to improve English every time.
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