The first day of school is always a mix of feelings. Excitement of the new things that are coming, nervousness that we fit in well, and determination to start classes on the right foot are just a few of them. As an international student, a new semester means a new opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and try new things. After all, that’s why you are traveling to another country. Developing a social life can be a challenge when you travel alone but thanks to technology, the distance between people is becoming shorter.
Nowadays, we have many tools and less excuses to join a new club or learn a new skill. As someone in a foreign land, it might be hard to find the right niche but this task can be very fun!
Student Union on Campus
Almost every college or university in the US is equipped with a centralized building called “the union.” There is where most events around campus will take place or will be announced since it’s a high traffic area. If you are looking for groups to join or things to do during your weekend, make sure you visit your on-campus student union. Some student unions will have bowling alleys, small movie theaters, and popular restaurants for your convenience. If you don’t have a car, the student zone makes it easy for you to find something to do and socialize!
We Have an App for That
When you begin your search for something that might interest you, technology is your best friend. Ninety-nine percent of the time there will be an app that connects you to nearby events, groups in the proximity, etc. For example, Meetup is a great app for your mobile phone where anyone can create an interest group and be joined by people around your town. Another great app if you need a ride somewhere is Uber. Ubers are quickly replacing public transportation in certain areas. They arrive in just a short time and are easy on the budget. Uber drivers are regular people with a car that will give you a ride, sometimes, for a fraction of the cost of a taxi.
Like it, Tweet it, Snap it
The definition of communication has been greatly changed by social media. As you advance in your career, it is important to balance out that busy life and have a little fun! Facebook allows you to find events in your area and it will even remind you on the date its happening. Clubs around campus or groups in town will have a Twitter account that you can follow and see their activities. With Snapchat, you get a glimpse of the event before you head that way.
Ask your ‘mates
If you live on-campus, you probably come across hundreds of people every day. While some people are social butterflies, others may prefer to just hang around one or two friends. However, the residence halls are a great place to find out about activities or the nightlife during the weekend. It is also a good place to start since most people around you will be looking for something to do! Never feel like you are the only one trying to explore and try new things.
Now that you have a place to start, you should be able to change scenery. Go from your bed and Netflix to learning a new dance move and making lasting memories on this exciting time of your life. Make sure you take a chance out there and never fear going to an event or joining a group. The only thing you have to lose is the boredom of staying home.