Why did you decide to study in the USA?
I decided to study in the United States because I always had a great desire to travel and live in another country, to know a new culture and study English with native speakers, where I would be immersed in the culture and the language. Studying in the United States would also provide the opportunity to meet people from different countries.
Why did you choose Howard Community College?
I chose Howard Community College because it is a less expensive institution. They have a very good structure for people who want to study English with several interaction activities with other international students and American volunteers to help you communicate better in English. Some of my friends studied there and spoke highly of the teachers and the educational system. It has a great location that is close to shopping at The Mall in Columbia.
What do you like best?
What I like the most about my program is being able to learn word-by-word with the American accent. I also like the interaction with students and the library.
What do you miss most?
I miss my family and friends.
How has this program helped you to handle future study at a U.S. university?
I have lived in the United States for one and a half years and I have studied English for six months at Howard Community College. My English has improved a lot and is improving every day. I have had excellent teachers.
What was your biggest surprise?
What surprised me the most was the practicality of the people in their daily lives and the qualifications of the teachers.
... your biggest disappointment?
I do not have any disappointments.
How have you handled:
... language differences?
Most of the Americans are very patient. When I do not understand a word or idiom they always explain it to me in an easy way that I can understand.
My family helps me financially while I am studying.
... adjusting to a different educational system?
My adaptation to the American educational system was easy. The teachers are very patient and dynamic. You just need to study because they give a lot of homework.
What are your activities?
The school organizes several different activities, for example, a party for the international students at an American home with Americans volunteers. Another activity was hiking at an awesome park. I've done hiking at Great Falls, Harpers Ferry, and Patapsco State Park. Another amazing place I travelled was to Niagara Falls in New York, where I saw a bit of Canada.
How easy or difficult was making friends?
First it was difficult to make friends because of my English. I felt too embarrassed to speak English in front of other people. When I lost the fear it was easier. Today I have American, Colombian, German, Russian, and Korean friends, and others from many other countries.
How relevant is your U.S. education to your personal goals and to the needs of your country?
My goal is become a successful professional and to speak English fluently. I want to be able to travel and know all the American states. Studying in the United States is an incredible opportunity to be able to achieve my goal.
What is your advice to other students who are considering a U.S. education?
First of all, it is very important that you know what your dreams are and what you really want to do. Look for an exchange agency. Visit one exchange fair; Study about it, be dedicated. Choose the course, the city, and the school before you come. You will love having the opportunity to study, live, and get to know incredible places.