Hi! My name is Nitya Sudarshan from Mumbai, India. I will be writing about what Brown is like as an international student, and my many experiences that helped me make Brown my home really far away from home.
Providence isn’t always warm and sunny. It can be cold, windy, rainy, snowy, or even all of those at once. Before Brown, I had been to cold places, but had never lived in a one. While weather may seem like a trivial factor compared to classes, grades, friends and all the other happenings of college life, living in the cold really is one of the biggest adjustments that international students have to make, especially those like me.
Mumbai, which is where I’m from, never goes below 25oC. We don’t really have a winter and aren’t used to seasonal changes as drastic as they are here. I remember when I first came to Brown, the top item on my freshman shopping list was warm clothes. I did not know how many jackets, coats, gloves and sweaters I would need, how often in the year I would wear them, what kind of jackets were the best, and what kind of boots would be best for the snow. It was really a guess until I actually experienced the winter.
When my first winter came, I was most excited about the snow. I remember walking outside for an entire hour before class just because I had never lived in so much snow before. Other international students like me were also excited by their first snow at Brown. Slowly that excitement transitions to braving the cold and trying to avoid the wind.
Brown really is beautiful in the snow, and the winters become a part of your Brown experience. You start associating the cold with the start of the second semester, you start associating the warmer days with the proximity of Spring Break and everyone out on the Main Green, you start associating hot and sunny days with the beginning of summer break. As an international student, adjusting to the weather definitely is a part of being from a different country, but it becomes a part of the Brown experience, just as everything else does.
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