I come from Shanghai, China. My Major is Financial Investment. I have been here almost two semesters and I have experienced a lot and learned a lot. It is my honor to share my experience with you.
It was really hard at the beginning of my first semester here. I missed my parents very much and the environment was totally different from Shanghai. Fortunately, the American students took good care of me. There are RAs (Resident Advisors) on the each floor too. They try their best to solve our problems. The canteen is also really nice because it serves Asian food which tastes like Chinese food, and so I feel like I’m home every time I eat it. The canteen gets decorated with bright red colors every year during the Chinese New Year. We can eat dumplings at that time which impresses us a lot.
The biggest problem is always studying. I felt under pressure because I needed to conquer the language barrier from the beginning. However, it hasn’t been a big problem because the professors here are very educated and nice. They ask us if we totally understand, and if not, they explain again and we can raise our hand to ask questions any time. Every professor has office hours, so that we can go to their office to ask questions. There is an Academic Learning Center in our university which is a treasure in students’ life. There are professional student tutors to help students for free. There we can learn Mathematics, English, and Biology and so on. The most welcoming department is the Writing Center. Great tutors there help to revise students’ essays. I always take my essays there to be reviewed.
I like the library very much; there are numerous books inside. We have free printing, copying and scanning which is very convenient. We can rent computers, headphones and calculators. We can also buy coffee to get refreshed. There are a lot of study rooms for groups so that we can do our group projects in the study room.
The best experience I have had is when I decided to join the International Student Promoters (ISP). I can always ask my international friends questions when I’m confronted with problems. They give me lots of suggestions and help me to conquer the difficulties. Even though I am studying abroad, I never feel like l am alone. I have participated in a lot of activities, for example, volunteering and being in a fashion show. l wore the Qipao which is a traditional Chinese dress. I hope that I can let more and more American friends know about our fabulous Chinese culture. I also planned and arranged a Chinese New Year Evening Party to invite Chinese and international friends to eat Chinese food and play games to have fun. I hope that all the Chinese students can feel that same warmth, like a family.
I interviewed for Residence Assistant position this semester. I was really excited and nervous at that time. I learned a lot from the interview. The first round was the individual interview. There were almost ten tables and each table have two interviewers. They asked us about our work experience and problem-solving ability. The second round was a group interview where we could ask questions about the RA position. I was lucky enough to pass the interview and get the position. I will start my work next semester and this work will improve my communication skills and other abilities.
In addition, I have joined a club which related to my major. The students in our club are all finance majors. The president invited speakers to give us informational talks to broaden our horizons. Every major in the College of Business has a club to help students improve the major knowledge and also share experience. There are also companies that come to our club meetings to recruit students. These are very good opportunities for us.
Besides studying and working, I like to swim and run in the Wellness Recreation Center (WRC) which helps decrease my stress and keep me fit. To have a healthy body and mind is a basic foundation for study. There are many facilities in WRC where you can enjoy exercising.
To sum up, life at the University of Northern Iowa is positive and busy. I have learned a lot which I cannot learn in China. I hope that when you choose a university, you will think about University of Northern Iowa first. It will give you a wonderful and unforgettable life.