Hello and welcome to my first blog post of the year. Since this is a new year and new things are happening, I have aptly decided to start a brand new series called Global College. Buckle up and get ready for the ride because I will be covering my journey to college and valuable lessons I learn during the next four years. I am so excited and I can’t wait to see what happens in this new chapter of my life.
Let’s start with some background, shall we.
As many of you may know, I live in South Korea with my family. I started and finished my senior year of high school here. Instead of going directly into college, I decided to take a gap semester and attend pastry school. However, I had still applied to and been accepted into, several universities during my senior year. In fact, I had already decided on my choice of George Mason University by this time last year. #gopatriots!
GMU is located in my home state of Virginia, USA. The campus is big and beautiful and the general area is wonderful. I still have friends and relatives in Virginia so GMU was one of my top picks right off the bat. That is until I factored in the distance between Korea and the States.
In case of an emergency, my family would be halfway across the world. 14 hours on a plane either way. I was homeschooled since 7th grade and have become very attached to my family in general and am bound to get homesick wherever I go. Soon going to the States for college started looking more and more depressing.
Enter George Mason University Korea on the Songdo Global Campus!
A GMU location in Korea? You guys I was ecstatic to find out I could attend my college of choice here in South Korea. They even have my major and I will be able to live in the on-campus dormitory. The application process went smoothly and as of June
So, what’s happening right now?
Right now I’m getting ready to move into my dorm and start college in less than 30 days. Panic is slowly starting to settle in. I go to my academic orientation next week Thursday and then it’s a few short weeks until student orientation and the first day of class. It seems like my to-do list gets slightly longer each day as well.
Most of my dorm supplies were bought ages ago; that’s one thing checked off my list. If you thought shopping for college was stressful, think about shopping for college overseas. All of the appliances that I buy are not compatible with outlets in the States making them a very short-term investment. Mattress sizes are also different. At least I don’t have to share a bathroom.
Speaking of dorm supplies, I have an awesome Pinterest board where I pin all of my dorm decor ideas and inspirations. You should definitely check that out and maybe give it a follow.
College overseas = student visas
In my mind, I equated student visas with international students. It didn’t strike me until I received an email asking for certain documents that I was an international student now. Fortunately, I live in South Korea under a visa already and won’t need to apply for a student visa until my current one expires. With that said, if you find yourself applying to college in a country that is not your home, make sure to factor in your student visa. They take time and money to process and the worse possible thing you can do is put it off till the last minute.
I had to get a TB test, because of course.
Apparently, TB, short for Tuberculosis, is still a thing here and the dorms I’ll be living in require a test for the incoming students. They also required the test to be done no earlier than 2018. So, to the clinic I went for a small skin test. Life-ending? No. Annoying? Yes.
There are no meal plans on campus.
Two gifs in a row, I’m on a roll. The subheading may be a bit misleading as it implies that the campus doesn’t serve meals at all. It does have a cafeteria that’s open during the weekdays and for certain meals only. Since it is a global college campus there are various cuisines from around the world.
I’ve been told that most students eat out or bring food from home to eat during the week. I don’t have the budget to eat out everyday and frankly I don’t have the time nor energy to go home and bring food from there.
However, it is easier to just cook for yourself in the shared kitchen, which is what I’m planning on doing. I see this as one more step towards being an adult because I will literally be responsible for my own food. No more standing in front of an open fridge wondering who’s going to make dinner.
Taking advantage of all the global college campus has to offer
As soon as I start school I’m finding myself some friends from all over the globe. Ya girl needs friends. I want a group of friends to connect with, which I, as an introvert and general loner, have never really had these past years. My whole high school experience was me doing school on my computer in my living room and that didn’t really offer many opportunities to make a group of friends. Now that I will be interacting with real-life people on the regular I want to push myself to make some genuine connections.
Wrapping up it all up
This is all from me today you guys! I hope you enjoyed my intro to this series and even more importantly I hope you stick around to read more Global College posts. If you are attending college in another country other than your home country, let me know in the comments below because I think that’s the bravest thing anybody could ever do. Till next time!