I’d like to thank my student Amanda Santos for her excellent final project: International Student Interview. I would also like to thank Mengjiao Mi “Jiao Jiao”, for sharing her story with us. Because of their hard work, we have access to the cross-cultural experiences of a UNR international student from Beijing, China. I hope that this helps students coming to America as well as educators in America better prepare for study abroad’s challenges and rewards.
Many of Jiao Jiao’s cross-cultural adaptation and transitional challenges are shared among international students. The following key points are from the video:
- Jiao Jiao just graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno this month! Congrats Jiao Jiao!
- Jiao Jiao is an accomplished UNR athlete (impressive dedication for her studies and sports commitments)
- Cross-Cultural Challenges: Language, time management, and family separation. She coped with language challenges by practicing with friends and teammates, asking questions, and getting involved with activities to use the English language often. She coped with balancing academic and athletic responsibilities by structuring time management skills. Being separated from friends and family can be very challenging but she used social media to connect and stay in touch. Time differences were an issue but staying up late or getting up early to chat was worth it.
- Jiao Jiao came to the U.S. without knowing anyone here. (That takes courage)
- She likes the U.S. food (except raw,cold vegetables) & U.S. culture/friendly people (but was shocked about dating culture).
- Jiao Jiao is planning on applying to UNR’s Public Health Masters program in 2014
- Study Abroad Rewards: Increases confidence, knowledge/experience, open-mindedness. Builds friendships, language skills, cultural competencies, international experience.
To provide more stories about study abroad in America, I will post a new international student interview from a different country each week for the next month. Hope you find this helpful and please comment if you do. Thanks.
Also, HLSL Institute is a helpful resource for international students, travelers, expatriates and expatriate families coming to the U.S. Check it out if you want help with cultural transition, language, transportation, and acculturation development.