September 4th, 2016
Since I’m studying abroad I figured I’ll talk about my university, the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST). This is hands down the most beautiful campus I’ve ever witnessed. It’s right up in the mountains. I took an Uber to the campus for move in, yes Uber is in Hong Kong, and during this ride was when I realized how huge this region really is. When you first think of Hong Kong you visualize huge huge skyscrapers, a bustling city, taxis and public transit everywhere, etc. But boy was I amazed as the city started getting further behind us, and looking out the front windshield the mountains got bigger. I thought I was leaving HK, and had to double check the location I put for the Uber. We drove through a tunnel, officially leaving the city area and came out in this Narnia like area that surrounded residential high rises. Nope we aren’t there yet ha. We drove around that area then started to ascend on uphill roads and that’s when I started seeing signs for “University” thank god. HKUST is located in Clear Water Bay, we are literally on the waterfront and with that comes stunning views, which you can see for yourself.
Everything here is taught in English, which is great. It’s interesting because outside of class I mostly hear the students speak Cantonese. I’m taking courses that I’m pretty psyched about. Design and manufacturing II, which is a project base course around mechanical design, CAD/CAM learning how 3d modeling software’s are made through the use of Matlab, a Product Design class learning the fundamentals of product design from the prospective of industrial engineer that includes projects with some use of Rhino, and lastly an intro to computer science class learning Python. So I’m not only returning with a great experience, but with some useful skills that I probably wouldn’t have gotten if I spent this semester at Drexel. This upcoming week begins my first full week of class, so I’ll talk more about the schooling another time.
There’s a ton of options for food here. There’s a hugeeee cafeteria, where they have Chinese, Japanese and western selections of food. It’s not buffet style like the Hans at Drexel. Here you order at the counter, get a ticket number, then when that number pops up on the screen you walk up to the specified food station and get your meal. It’s also prepared super fast. You can go there on an empty stomach and not have to be so cranky waiting. There’s also like 5 other food options, including McDonalds, which I have yet to try out here, and also haven’t eaten in years. There’s nothing that’s open 24 hours, the latest is to 2am, which is good enough I guess.
There are a lott of students here, but similar with Drexel once you start to know a couple of people it’s like you bump into them everyday. There’s the concourse that you have to walk through in order to get to classes, and that’s the equivalent of the pathway from Mario the Dragon to main building. Your bound to see someone you know. I haven’t met too many other exchange students, at least not yet. My roommate is an exchange student from Singapore, very cool guy named Tobias. We had some good talks already, looking at the differences in growing up in our respective countries. This seems to happen so often, especially with the exchange students that I’ve met. We’re all so open to sharing our stories and learning about each other. I’ve learned about what its like living in Singapore, Egypt, and Romania just from talking with other students. I actually have a good story I want to share in another journal post.
Just two more things I really want to point out that’s amazing…
One, the libraries across all universities in Hong Kong share books. So, if there’s a book you’re looking for in HKUST library that’s unavailable and Hong Kong Polytechnic has it, they’ll request to send it over.
Two, once you have student Wi-Fi access on a university campus, you can sign in using the same login information at any other university in Hong Kong.