As a student, you might have wondered once what your academic life would be like in the US. You probably had a thought or two that it would play out just like what you have seen in your favorite Hollywood movie or Netflix series. But, the truth is, what we see in the media can portray a very different experience than what students encounter on a daily basis at US universities.

If you are an overseas student, and you’re considering applying to a university in the United States, it’s critical to do some research about the US university experience because after all, you want to make sure it’s worth traveling so far for education.

So, here are some questions you might want to consider first:

1. Have I understood how the application process works?

International students should gain more insight into the process to ensure that they are providing US universities with all the information they need. Perfect scores may be integral to applications, but they are not enough to ensure admission, because when considering applications, American universities consider a variety of other criteria, such as essays and shown interest. 

2. Would my student profile appeal to American universities?

American universities are expecting more than your academic skills, they are hoping to build potential leaders who will give back to their communities in a variety of ways. You should evaluate how you can contribute to the community through your interests and skills.

3. What are my post-graduation goals?

It is important to also evaluate your long-term plans when applying in the US, such as the academic value of your degree back home and how profitable it will be. Ask yourself if you plan to stay in the US after graduating or return to your home country, and how your degree will hold weight when searching for a career in the environment you will choose to settle in.

4. What exactly are my top expectations when entering a university in the US?

If your perception of American universities is based on media rather than personal experience, you should try at the very least to research online to gain a better understanding of the university experience. And if you have the opportunity, why not try visiting the campus? Giving yourself enough context to understand how universities are in the US is the best thing you could owe to yourself.

5. Is it possible for me to return home during the holiday season?

A year away from home can feel like an eternity. It’s natural for students to feel homesick when they’re away from home, so think about how often you’ll be able to return and how well you’ll adjust to your new surroundings.

Before applying for an education in American universities, you must first ensure how different the US experience is from your home country and if they are a fit for your goals. A little research can make a big difference to make your college years in America the best way possible.

Explore more tips and tricks for international students like you. Read our other articles here at MSM Unify to learn more.