Why did you decide to study in the USA?
I decided to study in the U.S. because I think the diversity in education in the U.S. has a great importance to my education and my personal life. I grew up studying abroad since I was 5, and diversity became one of the most important values to me.
Why did you choose Shoreline Community College?
I chose Shoreline Community College because I was interested in their Nursing program, which has a great reputation. Also, the location of the campus is the best among other colleges in Washington State, and Shoreline is a very safe city and it’s not far from Downtown Seattle.
What do you like best about your college?
I like the staff and instructors. In addition, Shoreline has advisors for the international students, their instructors are very caring and considerate, and they make sure the students adjust and learn successfully. There are a lot of social events, volunteer and job opportunities for international students as well, which are very important because I learned at Shoreline that being a college student is not only about trying to be successful in classes, but learning the important life skills that prepare me for my career in the future.
What do you miss most about home?
I miss my relatives and friends the most.
What was your biggest surprise about U.S. life and education?
I was surprised to see many other international students like me, and that the community at Shoreline is really big.
... your biggest disappointment?
My biggest disappointment is the slow public transportation. I have to prepare myself earlier than usual to be on time for classes and other appointments.
How have you handled:
... language differences?
I grew up speaking a different language at school from the language I spoke at home, so learning and adapting to a new language wasn’t as hard as I expected. In addition, English is an important subject to learn in South Korea and China, so I was already familiar with the language.
Finance is always something that my family and I have to struggle and work on. I have a sister as well, so my parents have to pay for both of us, but being able to work on campus definitely helped cover expenses for transportation, phone bills and other personal expenses.
... adjusting to a different educational system?
It was harder at first because the instructors here encourage students to speak up and participate and I wasn’t used to it, but time really helped and I adjusted naturally as the time went by.
What are your activities?
I used to be a part of the International Student Leader (ISL), Student Representative of Associated Student Government (ASG), president of the Ukulele Club, and now I am working as program assistant at International Education Department at Shoreline.
How easy or difficult is making friends in the USA?
It is very easy to make friends with other international students as there are a lot of social events, but it is harder to make friends with local students because in my experience, a lot of the local students I met on campus had to work off campus after class or had other connections outside of school.
What are your career goals? How is your U.S. education relevant to your personal goals and to the needs of your country?
My goal is to become a Registered Nurse (RN). The nursing program at Shoreline has a great reputation and it is only 2 years which saves time and money. The shortage of nurses is a serious issue that has not been resolved in many countries, and with the current COVID-19 outbreak, I believe that this career is very important and needed all around the world.
What is your advice to other students from your country who are considering a U.S. education?
Studying in the U.S. provides a lot of time and opportunities to experience and explore. The U.S. education system is very flexible, therefore, it is not hard to change plans or to learn different things. I want to let other students know that it is always okay to explore different classes and careers, even if it’s not their original plans.