"The learning environment here in the United States at Endicott College in Boston is very different from Hong Kong. We are expected to initiate group discussions in the class. Teachers assist us in the thinking process and ask us to comment on either the reading materials for the week or on current affairs. I was not too comfortable speaking in class at first but I figured the best and fastest way to learn is to step out of my comfort zone. (Isn't that the whole point of being and exchange student?) Of course, this meant that I had to be well-prepared for class and do a lot more reading in advance, but I found the experience very rewarding. One thing that surprised me was that local students seem to know very little about the world outside the United States. A few of my local friends here do not even hold a passport as they have never left New England, let alone the United States.
Apart from studies, I was fortunate to have met some amazing new friends. In the beginning, they made my homesickness bearable as I enjoyed hanging out with them. My roommates even held a surprise party for Chinese New Year. They set up the whole living room with Chinese decorations and ordered Chinese food, and I was extremely touched by their thoughtfulness. I have also become good friends with many international students and they continue to inspire me to see things from different perspectives. The exchange programme has not only helped with my personal growth but has also benefitted me academically as a 'Global Studies' Major."