1. Tell us a little about your experience when you first arrived in the US. The plane ride, settling into your dorm etc.
My first 24 hours in the US seemed to me too beautiful to be real. I was finally on the campus I had dreamed of for so long, but somehow I was not really appreciating the moment as I should have. My counselor showed me my room, and all I could think of was “Is this really happening?” But then, on the second day, I finally processed the fact that I was indeed at Yale. It was such an epiphany, the people were amazing and the campus stunning. I was overwhelmed with joy.
2. What has been one of the most pleasant surprises of your experience so far? Any funny or special moments you can share?
The best highlight of my time so far was my birthday on October 5th. Like almost all my Mondays, I had a lot of work for my classes; at midnight October 5th, I was literally immersed in my homework for Italian class. But then, first surprise of the day, Chaste posted a wish on my Facebook wall which literally made my day. And later, in the evening, I came back to my room from a walk with Chaste around campus, and found that my friends had prepared a surprise party. It was one of those moments that are simply perfect.
3. What have been some of the challenges you have faced so far?
The first few weeks were really hard because I did not feel like talking to people. As surprising as it sounds, I felt we would not bond given that I am so much older. I hung out with Chaste all the time. Over time, I realized that it was just an excuse I gave to myself not to face that fear. I decided to change, and made amazing friends since then. Up to now, I still have such moments of doubts, but I learned to cope with it and move on.
4. Tell me about your favorite class and why you like it?
My favorite class so far is Introduction to Music Theory. I was in choir for very long but never actually learned how to read music notes. Every day in class is so much fun. I am also taking the class because I am also interested in DJ-ing and music production. The class is a perfect combination of fun and pursuit of a passion.
5. What do you look forward to as your time in the US and at Yale continues?
My time here made me realize how much I value my relationships with people. I feel like every person on campus is exceptional; the Yale community is simply wonderful. I am really looking forward meeting more and more amazing people and learning about their stories.