Enjoying New York on the High School Preparation Program
Le Hoang Diep Dan from Vietnam is a Bridge Program student at Kings New York, preparing to start a degree at Concordia College. She shares what it's like living and studying in the US, and the fun things she has been doing in New York.
Which Kings school are you studying at and what are you studying?
Right now I'm studying the High School Preparation Program to improve my English, and after I finish this program, I will transfer to high school. After graduating from high school, I will enroll into Concordia College.
What made you pursue a high school diploma and college degree in America?
I want to study a major related to Economics or Business in the future, such as Hotel or Restaurant Management, and I think that New York is a great place to study in this field.
My plan is to enroll at Concordia College and study Business Management or another major related to Economics.
Why did you choose to study at Kings Concordia?
The person I met at a local agency in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam gave me a lot of information about Concordia College and he also explained to me that my studies would last for only 4 years. He also told me great things about the facilities and people at Kings New York and Concordia College.
Then I went home and researched Concordia College on the Internet and I was really impressed! It was a smart choice.
Have there been any difficulties with classes or life in general?
Difficult thing for me is just the weather and sometimes the food. In Vietnam, the weather is very hot all the time. Here, I never know. I need to check the weather app every day and decide what I'm going to wear.
Getting used to the food has also been challenging as we don't have many Asian food options on campus. Also, the time difference of 12 hours... I feel like my biological clock has not stopped working at the Vietnamese time. Sometimes, I cannot get to sleep until very late at night.
What kind of assistance did you get from Kings teachers and staff?
Everyone has been very helpful. If I have any trouble, people explain things very clearly. For example, when I first came, I did not know how to take a train or a bus, or even how get a credit card. So I came to the office and Jodi explained everything to me very clearly.
I am generally a very shy person but my classmates are very friendly and make me feel very comfortable. My teachers sometimes tell a humorous story about themselves and I really enjoy that. If I don't understand something in English, they explain everything very clearly.
People, in general, seem very fun, even the people who work at the cafeteria. They joke a lot and sometimes I overhear some funny conversations. I really like that.
What do you usually do after school or weekend?
After school I always study. On the weekends, I like to go to Manhattan to visit a museum with Kings students. We have gone to many places together, like the Brooklyn Bridge, Chinatown. One of my favorite places is the Color Factory in Manhattan. I am going there with my friends again this weekend. It’s a lot of fun!
What is your favorite part of living in New York?
It's like being in a movie! To see all those lights in Manhattan, the bright advertisements on Times Square. Also, I really like that people in NY are... they act very busy. I like that. It is also easy to get to places here because there are many trains, subway, buses, etc. and everything is very beautiful.
What advice would you give someone who is considering studying at Kings New York at Concordia College?
Facilities, teachers, staff are very good here. They help us in everything, you can improve English before enrolling into Concordia College. There are also great activities planned for students. I want to tell every student in my country, if right now you're thinking about coming to the U.S. to study, that is a great decision.
If you come here you will improve your English and learn about the culture, which is very different from Vietnamese culture. You will also have an opportunity to visit a lot of places in NY.
Following her weekend visit to the Color Factory, Le shared the following account of her experience in New York with her friends from Kings — and the diverse friendships she has formed among the other students.
I want to share the best memories that I experienced in the Color Factory in March. I went with Jun, Karina, Clara and Yuka; then with Jorse, Jean, Jean’s sister and my roommate, Sara.
These days very amazing to me because we have much fun time on it, we took a lot of pictures, we drew each other, we ate mochi ice cream, macaron, candy, and ice cream, specifically all food in it is for free.
Yesterday, after we finish the experience in the Color Factory, we went to Chinatown to eat 'Pho' in it and they said Vietnam food is so delicious and I extremely happy when they said that. Moreover, after we ate Vietnamese food, we went to Kung Fu tea to drink milk tea. Then we want to play some sport so we decided to play bowling in Queens, and we spent about one and a half hours in that place.
I think those two days I had the best moments and best memories with them because I saw their smile and also I saw the word 'happy' on their face. If I see some people smile or have happy moments, I also cheer with them. I feel like they are the second family to me. I feel very grateful that they become my friends!