I've now been at the U for three weeks and feel I've had enough time to adjust to things and to make a clear review of the University and my time here so far.
After a week of international orientation where my family was still here, I finally moved into my new apartment and had my first night without them. It was strange to say the least. I suddenly was very aware of what I was doing and how far away I would soon be away from my family. After putting up some photos and items that I had brought from home my room felt a bit more homely, if still quite bare, but made me feel a lot better. After they left on Friday morning and I walked through campus to an international talk everything was beginning to fit in.
I love the campus. Being right by the mountains is lovely, and the University's position in Salt Lake City to the East and up means that there is a great view into the city on my walk into Uni each morning. Can't complain!
The city itself is lovely, much bigger than anything I've ever lived in before, that I can remember. However, the city center is easy to get to using the TRAX (a tram system throughout the city) and thanks to the LDS presence in the city, it's very clean and pleasant. The whole city revolves around Temple Square, the hub of the LDS church. The temple is beautiful as are the gardens, and the presence of the church's members who are polite and friendly makes you feel comfortable.
I have now had classes for two weeks. They are very different to how they are at home but I was expecting that. I was also expecting there to be a large amount of reading but I don't think I was truly ready! There is always so much! Not to add the quizzes and group presentations and small papers that are in each class I'm taking but I guess it always keeps you busy!
The social life is very different here too. Whilst at home we have a freshers week to mark the beginning of the school year where everyone gets drunk and becomes friends really quickly, here the events put on were smaller and oriented around getting to know your halls. It seems here that sports are a large part of the social life as well. Regardless of whether you like American football, the Utah vs. Michigan game which opened the season last Thursday was the talk of the campus and it seemed everyone wanted a ticket. As a part of the MUSS (Mighty Utah Student Section) I have season tickets to all the football games this fall which was a good call as the games seems to sell out very quickly! The school pride is infectious however, and I can't wait for some more games to watch!!
So far the U has left a good impression and I'm excited to see what's to come over the next few months!