Fall quarter is right around the corner and international programs is preparing for new students to arrive. It’s an exciting, but at the same moment, anxious time, if you are about to leave your home country and go to a new country all the way across the ocean (or at least, that’s the case for most students). Besides knowing what to pack, and what to expect, it’s good to know what you could do to make your orientation a great one!
1. Always speak in English
Even if you have people around you from your own country, you should always speak in English. This way, you’re inclusive of other people. You will probably meet people from all over the world who you might not have met if you only speak to people who are speaking the same language as you. It also helps you to get more prepared to do well in an English speaking classroom.
2. Don’t be shy
Everyone is new and everyone is looking for new friends. Walk up to that person standing in the corner or sitting by him or herself. You may have things in common with that person and you might end up making a new friend.
3. Have some starter sentences ready
There are a few sentences that can really help you to start a conversation or that can help you to get to know a little more about the people you’re talking with. Besides asking for their name (try your best to remember their names, even though you won’t remember everyone, getting to know about 5 names a day is a great start), you can ask them where they are from, what they are studying, where they would like to transfer to, or what made them come to Green River.
4. Say YES! to (almost) everything
Of course you shouldn’t get yourself in dangerous or illegal situations, but whenever someone asks you to do something, answer with an enthusiastic YES! Do you want to go to the movies? YES! Do you want to go grocery shopping? YES! Do you want to explore Seattle? YES! There’s a lot to do out there, and a lot of people to get to know. Whenever you say yes to something outside of your comfort zone, you get to experience something you might have never thought of doing. Doing fun activities will get your mind off home and potential homesickness. Being active and surrounding yourself with new friends is the best way to live a happy and social life in the USA.
5. Join the Seattle and CORE trip
This is a definite “Yes”! Green River offers a free overnight camping trip and Seattle trip. These offer great opportunities for you to meet new friends and see something besides your dorm room.