Hello dear Brothers,
I am writing to you all from the heart of Southeast Asia, Singapore! I miss you all very much and must say I am, admittedly, having some FOMO especially seeing all the great posts about rush. However, I am having an incredible time here and could not imagine being in a better location for 5 months!
The country is incredibly small but this has made getting around and experiencing it just that much better. For example, landmarks such as the Marina Bay Sands, which I thought I would see perhaps once or twice while I was here, I see everyday from the balcony of my apartment. Everything is only a short bus ride, or even shorter subway ride, away from my home. Singapore itself is always in pristine condition with littering coming with a penalty of a few thousand dollars at least. Yes, it’s true that no gum is allowed here but it’s a small price to pay for not having gum stuck to your pants when you sit down on the bus or accidentally touching it under a table. *cringe* In the short time I have been here I have really noticed what a diverse country Singapore is and continues to become. There are many sections of town that are home to many different cultures, like Chinatown and Little India. Stepping off the bus into these places truly does transport you and make you feel like you’ve left the country. Consequently, I have found it to be a very tolerant and welcoming environment and you will no doubt find your niche.
I know it’s hard to believe from all the great pictures on social media but I promise I go to class. I am studying at the National University of Singapore and what an experience it has been in the 3 weeks I have taken classes. I am taking courses about global sourcing strategies in the supply chain hub of the world and service operations in an economy that has become more and more service oriented since the start of the millennium. The structure is very different from that of South Carolina which has been an adjustment but I think I am getting the hang of it. I only have class three days and all classes will go for 3 hours, but the trade off is that you only have a class once a week! This leaves plenty of time for various activities, trips, and experiences. There are around 1200 exchange students here, so every class is a melting pot of other cultures and ideas. This is really pushing me to broaden my perspectives on the world and ask more questions not only of the professors but of my classmates. We forget sometimes that America teaches different things than the rest of the world.
I bet you all have burning questions about the Coronavirus and let me tell you, it’s the real deal. Although only 10 cases have been confirmed in Singapore (all of them natives of the Hubei province in China), you can tell that Singapore is taking it incredibly seriously. Everyone is wearing surgical masks, even if they aren’t sick. This has created a massive shortage of masks so if you have some spare ones laying around send them my way! Travel to and from mainland China has been banned until further notice, and students and teachers who recently traveled there are being forced to take a 2 week leave of absence. All in all, it’s a really big deal but Singapore has got it *hopefully* under control!
If you guys have any questions at all for me or just want to talk (because I miss you all), then please reach out! My number is still the same, just remember to add 13 hrs to the time of day. I hope you all have an amazing semester and I cannot wait to see you in the fall!
SOU Bros Abroad
This blog serves to highlight the experiences and tips that Brothers studying abroad have.