Weeks before departing you should contact your advisor or someone from MET International and provide them with information about your flight and arrival time. This way they can help you by sending the directions to your dorm and first steps after your arrival.
Stay tuned to public transportation options, Uber discounts for first time users, and other precious tips that might make your arrival even more pleasant!
2. I arrived to my dorm room (and I am not the only one here!!!)
This is the first challenge you will face: sharing space. If you spent all your youth with privacy and enjoying your own bedroom and bathroom, it’s time for some change. On the other hand, if you always had to share a room with your siblings or anyone else, the experience of living in a dorm won’t be so painful.
Your roommate, the person with whom you will share your room, may be a potential friend or a big problem. This is where the cultural shock will take place: you will have to adapt and LEARN from it!
My personal experience has been really good so far! My roommate ended up being one of my best friends! I taught her some Portuguese and she introduced me to food and culture from the Philippines. She likes to say that now she is half-Brazilian, and I like to say that I learned to admire her Filipino-side.
3. Today is the first day of class and nobody told me the professor is RUSSIAN!
What should you do when out of every ten words said by your professor, you can only understand two? Well, as time passes, your ears will get used to the accent, your English will naturally improve, and things will start to get clearer to you. On your first day, it is important that you take the syllabus and read everything calmly.
The syllabus is the document that contains general information about the course and your class schedule. Some more methodical teachers have a giant syllabus with the description of each class for each day of the semester, while others only inform you of the content in general and emphasize the importance of Office Hours.
The Office Hours are dedicated to answer questions from students. So, if you did not understand what your professor explained in class, go ask them before it is too late.
4. I found out that I have to spend more than $500.00 on textbooks. Is that right?
It depends! The amount you will have to spend with your books will depend on:
- The number of courses you are taking and for how long you will use it
- The frequency that your professor uses the book
- How much in advance you purchase them
- The place you purchase them
- The version you buy (printed or e-book)
I would recommend to wait until the beginning of classes to buy your textbooks. Talk to your professor and ask him/her how often the book will be used. Some professors usually distribute copies of the book’s assignments, so you don’t need to buy the book. However, there are some books that are good investments and that will be useful during all your time as a student.
I would not take for granted the importance of the textbook in the learning process. In this perspective, if you want to save some money, plan in advance and RENT the books, either through Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Furthermore, ask on BU Facebook Groups if any other student from previous semesters can lend or sell the book to you.
4.Okay, It’s been a week and my laundry basket doesn’t have any more space.
BU offers laundry with washers and dryers in the basement. Save your quarters or purchase convenience points to pay for your laundry. Each cycle costs around $1.50 to wash and $1.50 to dry. It can take up to 80 minutes to complete the whole process.
In this video, our friend Rhett comes to save us from the nightmare of doing laundry:
Last but not least, it is a good idea to not let your clothes stay overnight inside the machine. This way you make the washer available for someone else. Finished washing? Just take the clothes to the dryer, keep cheering for the shirts to not shrink and, when drying is finished, take the warm clothes and fold them (otherwise they cool with wrinkles, and you will have to buy an iron,which is not cool.)
6. I bought groceries, where should I store them?
If you are one of the lucky living souls who went to Target to buy a candy bar and did not end up with two new sweaters, a microwave, a vacuum cleaner and a Play Station 4, CONGRATULATIONS. Now, where should you store your groceries?
You can call BU Vending Services and rent a mini-fridge and microwave OR you can label everything you bought, and store it at the kitchen, usually located at the basement.
But before you start spending money on that, be aware that BU has really good Dining Halls, with very flexible hours, and maybe you won’t need to worry about shopping for groceries at all!
Well guys, that is it for today! Let me know if you have any other concerns about these topics and I will be happy to help you!