3 Tips for Rooming with Another International Student

International student, Jenny, with her best friend and roommate
by Jenny from Vietnam

One of the common experiences most students go through is living with a roommate in host family house or in the dorm. However, that might be new for new exchange students if they are an only child or have never lived in a large family. Based on my experience with my current roommate, I will show some useful advices. Please keep reading :)

  1. Respect for each other:

    First, if you want your roommate to act kindly towards you, it is a necessity for you to respect and be nice to them first. Respect not only includes attitude and communication but also the thoughtfulness about the sleeping and study time. For instances, you can discuss with them about quiet time in order not to disturb each other. In addition, having earphones constantly when you are on your phone is important. This will show your consideration towards your roommate as well as your polite manner. If you respect them sincerely, they will reply with the same politeness.

  2. Activities together:

    Most exchange students do a study abroad program between 5 months to 10 months. This is a huge amount of time to live with another student. Therefore, you don’t want a sharing-room relationship. Try to engage and make friends with them. Lots of students, I have heard, still communicate with their roommate from high school or colleges. To help with building a relationship, I make a workout plan with my roommate! We jog 3 days a week in the morning before school. Through this, we have talked so much and know a lot more about each other. Another thing you could do is to have movie time on weekends or go swimming in the mornings. Those are a few simple activities, but it will strengthen the bond with your roommate.

  3. Problems can be solved through communication:

    Exchange students always share room with a student who is from a different nationality. This has both advantages and disadvantages. The pros is you will improve your English incredibly at the end of the program. On the other hand, different countries will have different cultures. Many countries have a culture of staying up late, loud verbal communication, others one do not. This causes some uncomforted when you live with someone who has such a huge contrast. One of the solutions, which is also the hardest, is to talk to your roommate. The more you communicate and understand each other, the more likely you will be able to solve any issues you may face.

Those are my tips to have great relationship with roommate. Hope you find this a useful article for anyone who are struggling. Thanks for reading! :)

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