“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.”
― Terry Pratchett
Alice Long spent a semester abroad at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. She got to study in one of the world’s most prestigious universities, took classes with renowned professors, as well as sampled a wide array of delicious foods, and travelled to multiple nearby countries. Learn more about Alice’s exchange school, daily life, and travels below:
The Hive is famous for its unique appearance. However, it is not just a tourist honeypot. It hosts exhibitions, screenings, workshops and seminars, and various student-managed social enterprises; it is a dedicated space for community engagement.
NTU’s orientation is very different from SFU’s. It introduces almost all the resources available at NTU that are important to know as a new exchange student. For example, a doctor from the Health Centre came in to talk to us and introduce the services the Center offers.
NTU has 18 Halls of Residence, and I was lucky enough to get a room in Hall 10 and lived on campus during my stay. If you get Hall 2, 8-12, this is exactly what they look like.
I took this course not because it was a part of my program requirements, but because it sounded like fun and enabled me to make a lot of friends, who also love Korean language, culture, and K-pop stars. Also, all the Korean professors are fashionable and approachable. They know the most recent popular Korean dramas and discussed them in class too.
I took this class because of its Field Trip component: we had to go to a busy mall and complete several assignments in a group. Then, we discussed the project with tour TA and the got immediate feedback. This practical component was very useful for me in order to better grasp marketing concepts learned in class.
The famous Marina Bay is an area in downtown Singapore, and is an extension of Singapore’s Central Business District. Marina Bay is a famous sightseeing spot and the view is awesome especially in the night. I have been there several times after my classes with my friends as I really enjoyed the view and restaurants nearby.
When I came to Singapore, I was surprised by all of the incredibly fresh, delicious, and diverse cuisines. Seoul Garden is an ALL YOU CAN EAT restaurant with very reasonable prices. Added bonus is that you can get a discount if you are a student.
I only spent 3 days in Cambodia and I really regret not staying longer. I visited the well-known site Angkor Wat, which is incredible. It is hard to put the feeling of being there into words; you must physically be there and feel it. I met some amazing people too who taught me about the history of the temples and local culture. I learned a lot from them and respected their humble spirits.
Alice Long is a third-year student pursuing Bachelors in Business Administration with concentration in Accounting. She is also a Career Peer Educator at the SFU Career Services Centre. Alice is an avid traveller and loves exploring new places and meeting new people. She says she has learned a lot about people from different backgrounds through listening to their stories and their perspectives. Travelling broadens your horizons and your mind!