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The Hat Chat

International Students

International Students

Hey there, readers! I’m Eleanor from Kenya, and I’ve found myself on an adventure across the world diving into the vibrant world of American life. Becoming an international student has been a rollercoaster of excitement, new friendships, and a thirst for knowledge. So, let me take you on a journey through my eyes, sharing the experiences that have shaped my first few months here.

As an international student, my story is more than just a pursuit of higher education; it’s a tale of transcending borders for personal growth. In a world connected by bridges of culture and knowledge, we, the international students, become ambassadors of diversity. America, to us, is where the roots of the American dream have grown strong, offering promises of opportunity and a remarkable adventure that beckons.

But what exactly is an international student? We’re individuals from all corners of the globe, adding a new perspective of life to the American academic canvas. With our various backgrounds and languages, we bring dreams that not only warm the heart but also enlighten the mind. Now, let’s talk about those initial culture shocks. America, is a fascinating puzzle. From measuring temperatures in Fahrenheit to using miles and inches instead of the metric system, it’s like living in a whole new dimension.

And language differences! The slang the expressions like Ttyl which I had to learn means talk to you later– it’s like learning a new language within a language. Most of the people my age in America tend to talk in acronyms which is a big change. But let me dive into the specifics.

As a Kenyan, the cultural diversity in America stands out. In my home country, we have a more predominant nationality which is Swahili, but here, it’s a beautiful mix – Hispanic, Asian, African American, and more. What’s even more intriguing is how everyone, despite these differences, integrates seamlessly. They share spaces and stories. It’s heartening to witness.

Now, let’s talk about something we all know and love – food. American eating habits are quite different from what I’m used to back in Kenya. Americans prefer smaller portions throughout the day, a contrast to our larger, more structured meals. It’s a unique aspect of daily life that has broadened my understanding of how people nourish themselves globally. Back home my favorite dish is Chapati which was brought to my country by Indian natives.

Chapati is a doughy flat bread that is typically served with any type of stew Navigating language barriers has been a mix of learning and challenges.

While English is widely spoken in Kenya, understanding different accents and slang in America can be like deciphering a code. And trust me, the struggle is mutual – some Americans might find it a bit tricky understanding my Kenyan accent.

Thank goodness for American friends; they’ve been a lifeline, helping me bridge the gap in communication. As I reflect on my ongoing journey, the road ahead seems both challenging and full of promise. Each day brings new experiences, and the cultural diversity continues to shape my perspective in unexpected ways.

Now, let’s talk about school. The American education system, with its own quirks and charms, has been an adventure. From understanding new teaching styles to navigating the expansive campus, every day is a new lesson.

In conclusion, being an international student is a thrilling ride, and I’m determined to embrace every challenge as an opportunity for growth. The support from everyone around me makes this journey not just educational but enjoyable. While there’s still much to learn and adapt to, I’m excited to further enrich my understanding of the world and cultivate lasting connections.

The road ahead might be long, but the experiences gained along the way are priceless. Thanks for joining me on this adventure!

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About the Contributor
Eleanor Jumba, Staff Reporter
What is a favorite hobby of yours: Baking What do you look forward to working with The Hat Chat: Telling a story through my own perspective What college do you want to go to: Not sure yet What's an interesting fact about yourself: I'm an exchange student this year, and I speak two languages

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