November 6

Figuring Out Your Path as an International Applicant

By caitfair

The BU Admissions team has been travelling across the United States and the globe to meet students who are interested in studying at Boston University. Our International Team set out in September and October to bring a little bit of Boston abroad. Caitlin Fairfield, an Assistant Director of International Admissions, met with students in Europe through college fairs and high school visits.

Caitlin Fairfield

Caitlin Fairfield at CIS Geneva College Night

Having been an international student myself, I have a profound sense of admiration for those who chose to pursue their undergraduate degree abroad.

Bravely, all freshmen coming to Boston University start a new chapter, a new leaf, a new life, and a new set of friends. International students do all of this, sometimes in a new language, a new culture, a new style of education. As an international student, there are always many questions about the ins-and-outs of college life that are not so different than American freshmen: Where to go? What to eat? How far is the closest burger place? And for international students, the questions of student visas and TOEFL scores are thrown into the mix. Or maybe simply why American kids wear bright sneakers instead of shiny, pointy shoes. It’s a lot to grasp. Keep in mind, there are always resources (like the International Admissions office) to help you with practical and cultural queries, all along the way.

In my travels, I was fortunate to meet students from all across the globe in places like London, England, Paris, France, Brussels, Belgium, Madrid, Spain, Zurich, Geneva, and throughout Germany and the Czech Republic. Many students had questions about curriculum changes (like transitioning from IB curriculum to the American system), living arrangements, and food choices for students.

First, let me tell you, if you are on an international curriculum, you will be a wonderful fit for Boston University. The kind of preparation you receive from the IB, French Baccalaureate, or German Abitur is one that will prepare you well for the challenging work at BU. Our flexible academic structure and liberal arts based curriculum fused with professional studies allows students to explore their preferred area of study, while growing in personal experiences, and keeping an open mind. At BU, we like to think big, we like to see the whole picture.

The Swiss Alps

BU traveling through the Swiss Alps

As far as the other two concerns of housing and food, all Boston University students are guaranteed all four years, and the dining services here may even rival your local patisserie. All the basics (like your new favorite place to study overlooking Kenmore Square) are covered!

So, relax. Focus on your strengths, and where you would like to go with BU. As international students, you are already adventurers, and this is your big moment with your own American Dream. You are equipped to take on the challenge of American education, and just like they say, the American folks are pretty friendly, and ready to make life-long friends from all around the world.




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