Starting a new semester and year with confidence and renewed aspirations!
One of Costa Rica's New Year traditions consists of taking a suitcase and running as far as you can exactly at 12 am on December 31. It is believed that if you do this you will be able to travel a lot during that new year. Two years ago I did just that while I was eating my 12 grapes and saying my wishes for that New Year with each grape, not knowing that eventually it would happen.
Now, some days ago, I celebrated a completely New Year starting in a different country and surrounded by different people. It felt a little bit empty, since I think that here New Year’s Eve is not a big celebration like in Costa Rica. I could even say that people back home care more about New Year’s Eve than for Christmas, so it is kind of shocking to see the difference between us.
Starting a new semester
Now that I am definitely more adjusted than I was five months ago, starting a new semester looks exciting and less stressful than the first time. Some of my first fears starting last semester were related to being able to learn in a different language.
I remember that for my engineering class I had to do an oral presentation, and I was so panicked that some days before I warned my professor that I was international and that maybe I would struggle with some technical words during the presentation. In the end, we had to do two presentations for the semester, and after the second one, my professor told me: “You didn’t have to worry about your English presentations, you definitely nailed this!” which gave me a sense of relief.
Now that I’m starting Spring semester, I feel more confident and less confused about campus and professors.
New Year's Resolutions
As I was explaining, in Costa Rica we eat 12 grapes for New Year’s Eve. Every grape represents every month, and we have to make a wish for every grape. This year, I brought that tradition to a group of friends, and I prepared bags with 12 grapes each. While I was explaining the rules to them I remembered all the times I almost choked eating grapes that fast and how now I was bringing that tradition to different people. I even made them get under the table at 12 am. It was fun and nostalgic at the same time.
For this year, part of my resolution is to grow as a person and to collect more experiences and knowledge. Now that I am more adjusted it’s easier to move on and to release everything that was holding me back, and it’s time to find space for a new chapter in my life.
Our experience here is like a photo gallery — sometimes you might need to choose which pictures you want to keep and which ones you have to delete to get more storage to take new ones. Sometimes you can save those pictures in different storage devices to take them away from your phone, or in this case your present. It’s not like you are going to lose all your moments — they are there, but it is time to let them go to collect new ones.
I think that’s what it means to start a new year, so I’m taking the chance to start a new year in a new place and turning into a better version of myself.
I hope you all can feel the same way about this new year or new opportunity!!
Dylana Camacho Orozco from Costa Rica is an international student at Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno, Nevada.
Check Out These Schools
Start your U.S. adventure with Study in the USA
Learn About U.S. education financing, housing, and more
Nomad Credit helps international students search for and compare education loan (student loan) options, including options for students with a US cosigner or those pursuing a graduate degree. The Nomad team will personally help you with your education...
Study in the USA’s advisors can work with you to navigate the requirements to study abroad in the USA, UK, Canada, and Australia. We help you find the right school and apply.
ELSA - World's Best English Pronunciation App. Speak English like a native speaker. Get instant feedback on your speech from proprietary artificial intelligence technology. Learn more. Get a 10% discount using code: StudyUSA
Learn about American culture and education direct from our experts at Study in the USA. Read more