Off to study in America for the first time? Get ready for a whole new world! StudentUniverse will help you avoid some culture shock in the USA with expert advice from our (very honest) team members.
Many things in the US are different from what you may originally expect before departing from close family in China. Keep these wise study abroad tips in mind to help you integrate into a new environment more easily. Culture shock can actually be very funny, as well as challenging. Learn to go with the flow, enjoy the ride, and bring your own culture to your University experience in the USA!
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0:00 – 3:28 (Kenneth)
Today we are here to prepare you guys for some culture shocks
When you come to the US for the first time
So greeting here is much different than (it is) back home
In Taiwan, when I first meet someone
I’ll simply nod my head or give them a friendly smile
Here, people usually shake your hand and some even offer you a hug
So at first, I was quite shy when people do that to me
But now, I just realized it is just a different way for greeting
When people say “How are you?”, how would you respond in a typical way?
I mean, it is just a simple greeting and they just expect to hear from you
“I’m good. What about you?”
So next point we are going to cover is about food
When it comes to ordering food in America, please remember one thing
Big means HUGE
When it comes to food, another interesting point is that
A lot of American students will say “oh I love Chinese food”
Also, the popcorn here is salty not sweet
When ordering restaurant food here, you normally tip
In China, it’s in the culture that we don’t actually tip
Everything is included in the price
In Boston, it is around like 15%
So for the Chinese stomach, here is your advice
When you come to the cooking part
Peppers, hot peppers..everything easily at an Asian market
Or a Chinese market
However the prices of those goods are much higher than what they cost in China
However, when it comes to some American goods
Say ice cream, it can be much cheaper
I witnessed something really bizarre really strange
They like windbreakers instead of umbrellas
So everytime when it rains, you can see
Americans will have their hoodie on and just walk
So when it comes to the classes in universities
Sometimes the participation in class can count as a key factor to your final grade of that course
So be aware that you definitely need to be more involved in the class
A lot of Chinese students would like to dress nice and look pretty when they go to classes
A lot of Chinese students notice that their fellow American classmates wear pajamas and flip-flops to go to morning classes
So eventually they will start dressing more casually just like their American friends
American students want to party all the time on Friday nights
That’s why you can see people drinking
Or partying on campus
First thing to check is
It’s illegal to drink in the US under 21
And I also feel the style of drinking is too different between the two countries
In China, if Lee is my buddy
And I have a drink with him
We have to finish up one by one
If he doesn’t do that
He is half a man
But in the US
It’s more relaxing
You just drink whenever you want
Just sitting, chatting, chilling
If you have to give a piece of advice for Chinese students
What would it be?
I would say that
Definitely be more open and talk to people
And don’t be shy
Just try to make some American friends
A lot of them are very open and happy to make friends with you