Das erwartet dich im Studium in den USA
U.S. College Studentin Maddie beantwortet einige vielgestellte Fragen, wenn es um das Leben an einer amerikanischen Universität geht.
Wenn du mit dem Gedanken spielst, ein Auslandssemester in den USA zu absolvieren oder vielleicht bereits eine Studienplatzbewerbung eingereicht hast, dann schwirren sicherlich zahlreiche Fragen rund um das typische Collegeleben in deinem Kopf herum. Um dir einen hautnahen Einblick in den Alltag auf dem Campus zu verschaffen, haben wir unsere Praktikantin und US College-Studentin Maddie gebeten, von ihren eigenen Erfahrungen zu berichten.
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Hi, I'm Maddie!
Hello! My name is Maddie Pennell, and I am an American student. I am from a small town in Connecticut and currently major in Communications with a minor in Public Relations. I have spent the summer doing a marketing internship with IEC Online in Berlin. I wanted to give you an impression of what it's like to study at an American college campus and will answer some of your most asked questions when it comes to experiencing college life in the U.S.
"When students are looking for things to fill time that do not involve class, it does depend on the area that your school is located in. For example, I go to school in a city, so there are naturally more options to fill free time than if I went to school in a college town or a more rural area. However, it is common for American universities to set up free events that students can go to. For example, my school host fairs, movies, or bring well known people to come speak to the student body. This past year, I went to a self-care fair, a welcome event, and much more. During finals season, my school threw a huge event where everyone got free coffee. Another popular event is at the beginning of the year or semester, most universities will have an activities fair, where all the clubs set up a booth and students can see all their options and sign up for what they want. It is common for there to be a ton of clubs that students can choose from. Student clubs typically meet within common free times in the day and are the perfect way to fill time and meet new people. There are times where clubs will host events or booths on campus for the rest of the student body. It is common for different things to be happening on campus during the day, and students can be involved in a lot of different things."
"In addition to all the clubs and activities, there are usually diverse food options for students. In my experience, the dining halls are good, but it does depend on the school. There are options for those with dietary restrictions and allergies, as well as vegan and vegetarian options. It is also typical for American schools to have restaurants on campus for students to eat at if they want a break from the dining hall. I have found that it can be easier and quicker to eat something at the dining hall, but it is usually healthier overtime to make your own food at home. I had a meal plan last year and I found it to be a very easy and convenient way to get food, but would sometimes want something that was not in the dining hall. When eating at the dining hall every day, sometimes students can get tired of the food, especially if it is limited, so making different meals at home occasionally will help avoid that problem."
"While there are things to look forward to like activities and food options, there also seems to be a bigger question when it comes to safety at American schools. Personally, I feel safe in the school that I live in. While I do believe that everyone should be cautious and aware of their surroundings, especially those that go to school in a city, I feel safe. I have never had an issue and think that safety is a not as big of a problem as it may seem before you have arrived. The key is to just make sure that you are being alert, and try to stay around people or in groups, epically at night. Typically, American universities have what is known as the blue light system, where if you feel that you are in danger for some reason, there are a ton of these buttons on campus that you can press, and it will call the police. However, I do believe that if you try to stay near people and stay aware of what is happening, safety is not a big problem at American universities."
"One big decision among students is whether they should live on or off campus. I believe that researching the specific school residences and the area is the best way to make that decision. It also depends on the experience that one would want to have at university in the United States. Do you want to live more independently, or do you want more guidance? Personally, my first year I lived on campus, because I was new to the city, and it is more helpful to live on campus. However, now that I have gotten settled, I am living off campus. There are pros and cons to both sides, so it really does depend on the person making the decision. Living on campus is a terrific way to be close to school, meet people, and have close support. On the other hand, living off campus tends to be cheaper, and it gives you much more independence and space. It depends on what is the most important to you. As for the dorms or residences themselves, it is important to research what the specific university has to offer, and if that fits into the type of living that you want."
"In terms of going to class and meeting professors, it is very normal to worry about what the professor is going to be like. In my experience, I have never met a mean or unhelpful professor. When I first got to school, I was slightly intimidated, but when I approached all my professors after class or in office hours, I realized that they were extremely easy to talk to and wanted to help. I feel that introducing yourself to professors can make the class and overall experience easier."
"Similarly, to approaching a professor, it is easy to get help on something that may be hard to understand if someone needs it. American professors are typically clear about their office hours and are also open to causally answering questions after class. It is also normal for American universities to have extra help resources. There will usually be student tutors for different subjects that can help, or even a librarian that specializes in the subject on which you are working. There are also normally free editing services where you can an essay peer reviewed before turning it in if needed. I use the librarian for my specific major all the time. She has made essays so much easier because she can look through me specific and updated sources that relate to my topic. I also use our peer editing service with every essay that I write because it is always nice to have someone else read the essay over before submitting."
"As for how the classes run, it is usually a mix of lecture style classes and participation-based classes. However, the long lecture-based classes are more common in math and science classes. Most media, communication, or language classes are much more discussion or participation based. All my classes are filled with projects, presentations, and participation. For example, I once took an advertising class where I had to take a failing business and create a new hypothetical marketing strategy for that business."
"When in these classes, professors usually assign students textbooks to buy for their classes. While these prices can be high for books when you first look them up, students usually do not have to pay the full price. Once students have the textbook number or title, you can usually find an online version or a used version. The best way that I avoid paying the higher prices is by renting a used version of the book. Renting the book is significantly cheaper than buying it, and the used versions are always cheaper than buying the book brand new."