Sophya’s first few weeks in the States and at her very own Central State University were easier and much more flawless than she expected. Sophya comes from Saint Petersburg, a city with around 5mln people and here she lives in Wilberforce, Ohio, a small town with over 2000 people.
“Before coming to Wilberforce, I knew that life in a small town in the U.S. is very different from what I am used to. I was worried that it would be difficult to get the things I would need here. And it’s nothing like that! The nearest Walmart has everything I can think of and the local post office is located about two hundred meters from the dormitory I live in,” she said.
Sophya studies sociology at Central State University. Before arriving to the US, she read a lot about the US, American lifestyle and asked her American friends many questions. She thought that there would not be any surprises left. The reality was different.
“The biggest surprise was the greetings and small talk. It is so different from what I imagined it would be. I first encountered it on my flight to Dayton. An old lady right next to me started a conversation and we spent half of the flight chatting about the places we are from. I absolutely adore how easy it is to start a conversation with a total stranger here. Sometimes people just approach me on a street when I take an evening stroll and we chat about random things from the vegetation on the campus to the problems of global warming”, she said.
Sophya says that her experience so far is wonderful, and she already knows how difficult it will be to part from her new friends and community once the program is over.