College life at Stanford and CUHK

Thank you all for your wonderful contributions to the Stanford-CUHK blog so far! I hope you all enjoyed the second exchange. One part of the lesson plan we did not get the chance to discuss was the differences in college life at Stanford and CUHK. We think that students might be interested in learning about college life in a different culture, so we are giving you the opportunity to discuss the topic here.

Please respond to one of the following questions in addition to the very last question, which everyone should answer. If you would like to post a link to a picture or video to supplement your post, you can do that as well.  Also, feel free to comment on anything from the second exchange experience (what surprised you, what you learned, etc.)

1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

___To ensure financial/job security in the future

___To have fun

___To make your family proud

___To become a more well-rounded individual

___To be exposed to diverse experiences and people

___To pursue your passions

___Because I feel like I don’t have a choice

___To one day give back to the community and world at large

___Other

Why do you think most people in America (if you are a Stanford student) /China(if you are a CUHK student) go to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

___To ensure financial/job security in the future

___To have fun

___To make your family proud

___To become a more well-rounded individual

___To be exposed to diverse experiences and people

___To pursue your passions

___Because I feel like I don’t have a choice

___To one day give back to the community and world at large

___Other

2. What is your biggest worry or concern as a student at CUHK/Stanford? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

___Managing stress

___Getting good grades

___Fitting in socially

___Maintaining a healthy lifestyle

___Choosing a major

___Finding my passion

___Dealing with financial issues

3. Describe the types of activities you like to do on weekends. Describe the types of activities you think a typical Stanford (if you are a Stanford student)/CUHK (if you are a CUHK student) student does on weekends. What do you think the types of activities students at your school prefer say about your culture?

4. Is there a big focus on joining clubs or participating in extracurricular activities at your school? If so, what clubs are you a part of? What kinds of clubs or activities are popular at your school? Describe why you believe these activities are particularly popular at your school.

5. What is your favorite memory from college so far?

Everyone please respond to the following question:

What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

Photos from CUHK’s campus:

 – Posted by Sean from CUHK

 Photos from Stanford’s campus:

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28 Responses to College life at Stanford and CUHK

  1. Althea says:

    4) One of my favorite things about Stanford is the amount of student involvement there is and the wide variety of clubs and student organizations present on campus. I feel like no matter what your interests are, there is a club (or two) that has something to do with them on campus where you can go, feel welcome, and meet other amazing students with similar interests. And that said, if there doesn’t happen to be a club with what you have in mind, you can start one! I have honestly yet to meet one person who isn’t involved in something on campus other than class – whether that be sports, outdoor activities, music, theater, film, art, culture, politics, business, science, civil rights… the list goes on and on. I wouldn’t necessarily say that some clubs are “more popular” than others; maybe some are larger, more well-established, or just less unusual than others, but that doesn’t make them more “popular.” Finally, there isn’t really a focus or pressure to get involved in things on campus, it’s more like you just want to be involved. If you have an interest, and there’s something you love doing and want to do more of, you join a club so you can make friends who love that same activity. That doesn’t mean that Stanford students don’t spend a significant amount of their time studying, but it appears that everyone is very multi-dimensional and involved in many organizations which they are passionate about.

    Goals:
    My goal for the future is to find something I am passionate about and pursue a career in that. Haven’t quite figured out what that is just yet, but I’m sure I will someday. I want to meet amazing people (like Stanford students), hear their stories and perspectives, and learn from them along the way. I will figure everything else out as I go. I guess this goal is somewhat “American” in the sense that I have always felt like I could pursue whatever interested me most, and I would still have the support of my parents, peers, and teachers. But I still have the same yearning for success, fear of failure, and want to honor my family as, I would guess, is fairly common across cultures.

  2. Jane says:

    _2__To ensure financial/job security in the future
    __8_To have fun
    __1_To make your family proud
    _6__To become a more well-rounded individual
    _5__To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _7__To pursue your passions
    _4__Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    __3 _To one day give back to the community and world at large

    My reasoning behind the rankings that I made for the reasons CHUK students go to college come mostly from the fascinating discussion we had during the last exchange about dreams. As opposed to what seemed to be the Stanford students’ unanimous belief that they can realize any of their dreams, the CHUK students talked about the importance of having the “right dreams.” Making your family proud and finding a career that enabled a comfortable future seemed to be two of the most important factors in what dreams are considered “right.” While Stanford students seemed to associate their dreams with passion and personal agency, CHUK student talked less about individualism and more about realistic planning and parents who caution children to “be down to earth.” Overall, I think the common themes in our discussion about dreams can easily be applied to the reasons students choose to go to college.

    My goal for the future is to, as cliché as it sounds, be able to look back with few regrets and to feel a sense of fulfillment in whatever I have chosen to pursue. Similar to Althea, I’m not quite sure yet what career path will get me to this sense of fulfillment, although I’m sure that my future happiness may be found in lots of different arenas from goals I’ve accomplished, to relationships I’ve made, to differences I’ve hopefully made in other peoples lives. On one hand, my desire to cultivate a clear sense of self and discover my true passion is very “American.” Yet, I also see my future happiness as very much tied to other people, whether it is through helping other people, listening to their stories, or finding fulfillment in family.

  3. Eden says:

    My top reasons for coming to college are to pursue my passions (which I am currently unsure of), go be exposed to diverse experiences and people, and to one day give back to the community and world at large. I believe it is best to work in a field that you love. I hope to find a job that I will enjoy going to for the rest of my life and that truly makes me happy. I want to leave Stanford knowing I have experienced everything I desire, and in doing that I hope to meet many people from different backgrounds and countries. I have a strong connection to my Ethiopian community as well as my community back home, and I hope that with whatever profession I pursue, I can provide some assistance and make a difference in both communities.
    I think many in the United States go to college mainly to pursue their passions, but many hope to ensure financial/job security in the future. I know life has become bleak and hard for many families these past years and I feel like that has caused many to specialize in something they don’t necessarily love just to provide for their families. I always worry, so managing stress has always been a problem for me. I like getting good grades and generally a good grade does put me in a good mood (kind of nerdy, I know), so I strive to be as successful in school as possible. One of my primary worries this year is choosing a major. I consider finding my passion a subcategory of choosing a major because I want to love what I do. I am concerned because I must declare at the end of this year or first quarter of next year, and I feel like I haven’t had enough time to make this decision. I know it is not the biggest choice I’ll have to make in my life, but this still concerns me to a great extent.
    At Stanford, clubs and organizations are really the life of campus. Student groups put some of the biggest events on campus together. For example, James Franco and Big Sean were both brought by clubs on campus. Our band is respected on campus because they are always so hyped up to attend the football games, dress outrageously in comparison to the schools we compete with, and always steal the show. I think band is popular on campus because of their reputation and ability to bring the school together.
    I am unsure of my goals for the future. I may major in Human Biology, but I loved this Cultural Shaping of Emotion class and psychology, so now I am considering a Psychology major. Everything is very up in the air. My parents have always insisted I constantly strive for the best. I know I have been greatly influenced by my Ethiopian culture and the expectations people in the Ethiopian community (i.e.: my family, friends, church) always remind me of. I sometimes feel pressure to succeed, but I know that in Ethiopia many would not have the chance I have been blessed with. I always remember that and work hard in everything I do.

  4. Halle says:

    5. What is your favorite memory from college so far?
    My favorite memory from college so far was a night near the end of spring quarter last year. I was up very late finishing homework – nearly 4 am. I was about to go to bed when I heard voices from down the hall. I found three boys from my floor in the boys’ bathroom discussing a philosophy question – whether or not it was ethical to choose a life of peaceful, boring happiness for all of mankind, or to let people live on and make their own choices. As I entered, curious, they all turned to me and demanded my opinion. We ended up having a friendly debate that lasted until the sun rose. I loved that conversation because it was so emblematic of my life in college – finding people who loved to discuss ideas, having a huge dorm family that was awake at all hours, and experiencing unexpected moments of provocation at every turn. In that moment, I knew that I had found a place in the world where I was happy, challenged, and fulfilled.

    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    I’m very unsure about what I want for the future. I know I want to find a subject I love at school and study it. I want to travel internationally. I want to find a career that makes my life exciting and brings me purpose. I want to find a group of friends who challenge me but support me at the same time. I want to write a novel. I want to (someday) raise a family. Most of all, I want to carve out a life that will have an impact on the world but will also give my day-to-day experiences purpose.

    I think these goals – which are very imprecise and for the most part centered around my personal needs and dreams – have definitely been shaped by my American cultural background. A lot of my goals center around finding myself, my passion, my place in the world, whereas in perhaps a different cultural context my dreams might be more about fitting in where I am. And what’s funny – even though I realize that my aspirations have been shaped by culture, I do not find myself revising my goals at all. Even the knowledge of how much culture affects my life is not enough to remove myself from my culture. I guess that shows just how entrenched we are in the places we live in.

  5. Katelyn Gutierrez says:

    Question 4

    Faculty actively encourages students to “get involved” on campus. What exactly does “get involved” mean, you might ask? At Stanford, “get involved” translates to: join a club, participate in student government, work on campus, work for a professor, help out with a Stanford sanctioned community service project, or anything that involves interaction with others in the Stanford community. In short, there is an immense pressure to engage one’s self in activities on campus, which isn’t such a bad thing at all. These activities are meant to shape the individual in a community setting; so, even though the focus is usually the development of the self, it is in a group context. They are also meant to provide the students with opportunities that may help them in the future, or further their academic/social development. Clubs and the like are popular, because those with similar interests can bring their thoughts together and communicate with others, develop new and innovative ideas, etc. These extracurricular activities are meant to prepare the students for future interaction with people, and provide students with skills that will make the student more well-rounded and worldly. I myself am a part of the Pre-Med student community, I dance Bhangra (an Indian style of dance) with peers, I work in Professor Tsai’s lab, I am a member of PASU (Pilipino American Student Union) and the Native Community (I am Pacific Islander), and I help out anywhere I can on campus. I go to student/university events as well to become familiar with my peers and make friends. I try to “get—and stay—involved,” partly for the relationships I build with other people. The most popular activities are cultural clubs/groups (such as PASU), arts groups (e.g. dance, a cappella, sports, etc.), and student government. These activities are most popular because they assist and cultivate relationships/connections with others on campus based on similar interests. Stanford University encourages and often inspires a free-spirited attitude and the desire to try new things. This is because Stanford emphasizes the importance of finding your passion, the reason being that doing what you are most passionate about will mean that you will do the best in it, and thus you enjoy what your doing while simultaneously creating success for yourself and those you may come in touch with. However egocentric it may sound, the development of the self comes first at Stanford in order to build the community. The faculty at Stanford stresses the importance of finding one’s self, and consequently being able to know who you are and build relations with others who are as strong and resolute in their own identities—or, possibly, helping others find what is best for them if they are unsure. The end result is helping others, and activities help cultivate the self in a group setting so you can do so in future relations and situations.

    Last Question:

    My goal is to become a medical doctor, hopefully a neurologist or any concentration that deals with the brain. I believe that my own upbringing in an Asian-style home may have influenced my career goals, but in discovering that I actually wanted to study medicine, my American lifestyle allowed for me to explore my interests before decidedly becoming pre-med. I know, especially from those in my family, that a career in medicine presents more financial stability in the future, just as a career in engineering, law, etc. would provide for me. Although this is an encouraging factor in choosing my major and discipline in study, I also chose this for my passion: helping others lead healthy lives. Moreover, I find happiness in discovering what exactly ails the patient, and then taking future actions to cure it. There are many more emotional implications that accompany the career, but I feel that ultimately, I will enjoy and find most happiness in a career of medicine—which I decided for myself (my individualistic culture is showing!). Ideally, all works out and I can realize my (hopefully realistic) dream.

  6. Chuan Yu says:

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

    _2_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _5_To have fun
    _7_To make your family proud
    _4_To become a more well-rounded individual
    _3_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _1_To pursue your passions
    _8_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _6_To one day give back to the community and world at large

    I found that ranking these options was a little tricky for me, because the first few answers that came into my mind were not on the list. Had this been a fully open-ended question, I would have written something on the lines of “to get an education”, “to learn more about [a specific field]”, “to get involved in research” and “to learn and work together with other like-minded individuals”. Although not representative, I asked another Singaporean friend this question, and his first answer was also “to get an education” (though he didn’t elaborate on what getting an education meant).

    The question of why these would have been my top responses is similarly tricky to answer. To me, it seems somewhat self-evident that one goes to college to learn. While certainly one can have fun while doing so, the idea of fun as a primary reason for attending college sounds a little strange to me. That said, I guess these responses fit into the idea of “pursuing one’s passions”, since I did after all have some idea of what I wanted to learn. I also think that interacting with other like-minded individuals, discussing and playing around with ideas contributes to learning, which is why I ranked “being exposed to diverse experiences and people” highly.

    Q. What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    Like everyone else, I’m not really sure what my goals for the future are. For now, I think I would like to gain a deeper understanding of one or two fields that I’m interested in, and to get more deeply involved in research in these areas. To some extent I think these goals have been shaped by my Singaporean background – specifically, the “kiasu” (afraid to lose) mentality. At Stanford, there are many accomplished and hardworking students who are smart, knowledgeable and successful (many of my Singaporean seniors included), and seeing them makes me feel like I should work harder in order to be able to “catch up” with them.

    Some comments on the second exchange experience:

    I thought it was a bit of a pity that we didn’t get to discuss the different university experiences at Stanford and at CUHK – I think that would have been interesting. This week, Stanford is having orientation for the incoming freshmen, and it’s interesting to see how everyone from the students to the staff is so excited and enthusiastic about welcoming the freshmen. I’m curious to know how much of this is due to the nature of orientation programs, and how much of it is due to the fact that European Americans value high arousal positive states. It would be nice if the CUHK students could share some photos, videos or thoughts on the orientation experience in Hong Kong, and if we could compare that to the orientation experience at Stanford to see how cultural shapes the orientation programs in both countries.

  7. Laura Drohan says:

    My main concerns at Stanford (from top concern to least concern):
    • Choosing a major
    • Getting good grades
    • Finding my passion
    • Fitting in socially
    • Managing stress
    • Maintaining a healthy lifestyle
    • Dealing with financial issus
    For me, academics are my main priorities at school. In reality, the top three priorities I ranked are equally important and when I focus on one of these, like choosing my major, I tend to strive for good grades and I aim to find a subject area for which I am passionate. My family has instilled in me the importance of education and contributing my passions and skills to society. Fitting in socially is also an important part of my time at Stanford because of the experiences I gain during this “social education”. However, academics have always been what worries/concerns me the most throughout a school year.

    My future goals have been greatly influenced by my cultural background. Although I’m not sure what career I want to pursue in the long term, after I graduate from Stanford, I plan to attend graduate school to study neuroscience and explore and work in the field of healthcare. I think the idea that university students should explore many fields of study and discover what types of careers they most enjoy is a very American perspective. I have been encouraged to take time to enjoy my time in school and explore different subjects so I can find what fields of study I am passionate about. At the same time, I feel the need to establish my role in society, how I can help others in my daily life. This mix of individualistic and interdependent goals supports an important notion that Leung Ka Man brought up in our last blog posts, that Chinese culture is changing and it is becoming more individualistic as urban centers become more multicultural. The comment shows that American culture is not purely focused on the self and similarly, Chinese culture does not exclusively focus on interdependence. Rather, the balance between these two cultural attributes (individualism and collectivism) is unique in different countries and in different time periods.

  8. WONG, Wai Shing says:

    What is your biggest worry or concern as a student at CUHK?

    _6_Managing stress
    _1_Getting good grades
    _2_Fitting in socially
    _4_Maintaining a healthy lifestyle
    _7_Choosing a major
    _5_Finding my passion
    _3_Dealing with financial issues

    Being a university student, academic performance is very crucial as it will affect our future employment. We have a tight schedule for study and loads of assignment to work on. Therefore, we need to put much effort on getting good grades.

    Meanwhile, we meet various types of people in university and we will work with them for projects or holding activities. Socializing skill should be one important competence which we should acquire in university. This will make us become more mature and help us adapt to the competitive world after we step into society.

    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My goal for the future is having a job with stable income and a harmonic family, so that I can lead a comfortable and happy life. I don’t want my life to be so hectic and I prefer having more leisure time instead of becoming a very successful man. From the last two web exchange experiences, I found that American would stress more on personal success while Chinese focused more on family, as revealed by the content of advertisement and videos chosen. Thus I think my goal should probably be affected by Chinese culture which emphasizes the importance of a warm family.

    Name: WONG, Wai Shing
    SID: 1155000897
    CUHK, Team A

  9. 1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    _1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _3_To have fun
    _7_To make your family proud
    _4_To become a more well-rounded individual
    _2_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _5_To pursue your passions
    _8_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _6_To one day give back to the community and world at large
    ___Other
    I wanted to come to college mainly because of ensuring financial and job security in the future. In Hong Kong, holding a bachelor degree is the basic quality one should hold to get a nice job. Also, in university, there are subjects that offer professional knowledge, such as my major pharmacy. By getting into university and into this degree, I can ensure a secure job and financial status in the future.
    The second important reason was that I wanted to be exposed to diverse experiences and people. Life in university compared to high school is very different in Hong Kong. There are much more freedom and new experiences. By exploring into a new environment, I can explore myself more and enhance my social network by meeting more different people. This is important for personal growth as we have to know ourself better and learn from others for improvements.

    Why do you think most people in America (if you are a Stanford student) /China(if you are a CUHK student) go to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    _1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _8_To have fun
    _2_To make your family proud
    _6_To become a more well-rounded individual
    _3_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _5_To pursue your passions
    _7_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _4_To one day give back to the community and world at large
    ___Other
    I am a student from Hong Kong, China. And by my observation, I think ensuring financial/ job security in the future is also the major reason why people want to get into college. This is because economics is one of the biggest focus in the fast developing China. The competition in the society has become more and more aggressive. This raises the minimum education level and so most people will thrive to get to college.
    I think making the family proud is also a important concern for Chinese people because of the one-child policy in China. With only one child in one family, the parents will put high expectations on their child and want them to get into university, so as to change the situation in their family. Thus, many of the students are fulfilling family’s expectations.

    Name: Ngai Yee Shan
    SID: 1155000945
    CUHK, Team A

  10. Tina says:

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    My reasons for coming to college, among all the options above, were to pursue my passions and experience different things and people. University encourages all-round development. Although we might not be able to surmount all subjects/fields, we have chances to experience different things, taking courses from all the departments. Even if you are not doing exceedingly well in other subjects other than your major, you can still sit the lectures of those courses, which enable us to touch different fields for free. And if you are fortunately enough to find a subject of which you find enlightening, you can proceed to higher level. This is especially great for those have many interests and much curiosity. “University” rhythms “let you play four years” in Cantonese. To me, university is a time for me to enjoy all the new things that interests me, like culture studies, languages, computer science. No better time in our life we can fully indulge ourselves in–not in high school when we were struggling with public exams, nor the moment we start entering work force. In high school, I think I spent too much time doing the costing—weighing between the beneath and the cost, dragging me from joining all kinds of activities. In university, I tried to pursue what I want, like taking courses that interests me, being a committee member to do goods or to spread our passions to others. Experimenting does cost my time, effort, and patience, but it also gets me an entirely new perspectives and gain experience.
    The second reason is more realistic, but having a degree is a must for entering the work force, or precisely, getting a well-paid job. Hong Kong has a surprisingly low rate of university admission rate (18% for each age group), yet it is often reported that fresh graduates have difficulties in finding a decent job. That’s the reason why so many parents are pushing their kids to do well in their academy, another reason why the kids are working so hard in high school, killing the chance of learning anything outside the exam syllabus. It’s like there is no other path to earn a living. I don’t know the situation in the State, but from the exchange I know that the parents in the State encourage their children to pursue their dream and will not manipulate their future like a god hand. Can someone enlighten me why there is such a difference in the parenting style?
    I guess other students in Hong Kong share more or less the same idea as mine, only the order might be a bit different for them. 99% of students go to college partly because it’s their parents’ expectation, for a “better future”. And most of the students do have expectation in college life. Hong Kong students think that there are five things you cannot miss in college life, which are dormitory life, being a society committee member, having a date, getting part-time job, and skipping lessons. All the five things are all related to experiencing new things. Though the latter one is a bit unbelievable, it is still a new learning style very different from those in high school.

    GOAL
    I agree with Althea, the first student commented in this discussion blog. It is of course very nice to have something you have passion in to become your career. Unlike the students in Stanford, most of the students in Personality Psychology class are psychology major. However, speaking of the truth, it is a keen competition to be working in psychology related field, especially in Hong Kong. Besides, I still have much interests haven’t tried or learnt about, so I have not settled for sure what is my goal. But I am continuously trying to maintain a balance between my major and other interest, hoping to decide which my true dream is.
    As I mentioned before, our parents put a lot of pressure to shape our mind. My mother even tried to talk me into choosing business as major (because she thought business is a greater choice, earning more money)! In china, we have responsibility to take care of our parents, since they brought us up to college. Some of the parents even think bringing up a child is like investment, which is for future better good for them. In this sense, students in China have a greater burden to set a higher goal, getting a higher-paid job to support their parents as well as themselves.

    sid 1155002467
    CUHK, TEAM A

  11. Sung Yun Cho says:

    Name: Sung Yun Cho
    SID: 1155014660
    CUHK, TeamB

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

    __2_To ensure financial/job security in the future

    _3__To have fun

    __1_To make your family proud

    __5_To become a more well-rounded individual

    __4_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people

    __7_To pursue your passions

    __6_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice

    __8_To one day give back to the community and world at large

    ___Other

    Being Korean-America, (I was born in korea but moved to the states when i was six), I feel a both torn and connected to both cultures. Even though on the outside and my personality are both very American, I notice as I grow older that my values are pretty Korean, because that is the way that my parents have raised me. So basically, my first two priorities–make my family proud, and to ensure financial security– are pretty asian things to say. It is only after those priorities that I see the need for fun, life experience, and growth. I consider those elements very important as well, but after sitting down and ranking these choice, this is the outcome.

    2. What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My career goal for the future is to work for the UN. My parents are Americanized to some extent, so they support my career goal. But still, in their minds, the most important thing is that I meet a nice Korean boy and get married. It’s pretty funny–I think the only reason why they approve of my career goal is so that it will open opportunities for me to meet more successful, Korean men. Not that they are being shallow–if one understands the Korean/Asian/probably Chinese culture, the family is the most important thing. If you have a great job, but an unhappy family, how happy can you be? I used to be really rebellious against their way of thinking, but I do now see the practicality of it. And my acceptance of their goals for my life is a way of showing respect to them, and that is how I choose to look at it.

    3. About the 2nd video session:
    I did notice a divide as to what kind of goals that people from each school had. Like I mentioned briefly before, the responses from CUHK reflected the Asian culture, where they focused on the practical aspect– about money, security, and about honoring the family. Although these thoughts were also present on the Stanford side, they also included the importance of pursuing what they are passionate about, regardless of whether that job pays a lot or not.

  12. Lam Ka Wai says:

    1>
    For me, my ranking of the options would as follow:
    To become a more well-rounded individual
    To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    To make your family proud
    To have fun
    To ensure financial/job security in the future
    To one day give back to the community and world at large
    To pursue your passions
    I think secondary school learning is highly restricted in the syllabus I studied, there is only very little room of freedom for us to choose or explore what do we need, I always think that what I study is not what I really want and desired, that’s why I was so longed for entering the university, which I think I can really freely choose what I want to study and develop myself into a well-rounded individual, knowing lots of different types of knowledge, knowing how to coordinate with different types of people, etc.
    Also, college is a centre which clustered with a large scope of people and opportunities, here are many kinds of people from different districts in Hong Kong, from different cities in China and even different country and culture from all over the world, all in all, people is from different background, we can learn from each other and widen our sight from the diverse views; and here are many new experiences that I never encountered before like exchange, organizing large scale functions for the whole college students, etc.
    All in all, to know more about myself and explore more about what I need tends to be the central rationale for me entering the college.

    From my point of view, American students’ ranking may like this.
    To have fun
    To pursue your passions
    To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    To become a more well-rounded individual
    To one day give back to the community and world at large
    To ensure financial/job security in the future
    To make your family proud
    Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    In line with my impression towards the Americans, they are more independent and knowing how to enjoy their own life, what they did are not for others but their own will. That’s why they will enter the college mainly for their own interest and fun. As they are not as serious as Chinese in pursuing high academic achievement, they will enjoy their own study and really explore some fun from it. Besides, they will seldom waste time and effort in doing something they don’t prefer or interested, but they will highly involved and engaged when they find something they are really interested, therefore, they enter college for pursuing their passions!

    5>
    What is your favorite memory from college so far?
    My favorite memory so far is the moment with my beloved friend after the lessons, since our campus is so large, I usually rush from one place to another for the lessons, this cause me missing lots of the chances to enjoy or discover the beauty of the campus, which incorporate the natural beauty. After lessons everyday, I can enjoy the time with my friend in a leisure mode, chat and play so happily.

    What are your goals for the future?
    My goal for future is to build a dream house and live with my beloved family members, and live in a self-sustained way like having organic farming in the tiny garden in the house, selling the hand-made goods. I want to fulfill my goal of living in such a leisure and care-free way.
    From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    I think my culture has somehow shaped my goal for future, first of all, China is a country which people lived in a collectivlistic way, we are inter-dependent, which is meaning that we concerns about our relationship with others so much. For me, fulfilling a future goal does not mean fulfilling any personal accomplishment, but my beloved should also be involved in my goal. Without them, my goal would not be completed, even I get a dream house, if I am just living alone, I do not think I have attained my goal. Besides, chinese people adore the nature so much, that why I am also amazed my the natural beauty and have the desire to enjoy my life embraced by the nature.

  13. Lam Hoi Ting Ashley says:

    4. Is there a big focus on joining clubs or participating in extracurricular activities at your school? If so, what clubs are you a part of? What kinds of clubs or activities are popular at your school? Describe why you believe these activities are particularly popular at your school.

    Joining clubs and extracurricular activities is regarded as part of university culture in CUHK. I think students in CUHK put a heavy focus on these kind of activities because as we hang around in our campus, we can see posters and banners all around us promoting different clubs and societies in our school. The reason why joining clubs and extracurricular activities in CUHK is so popular is probably because this kind of activities provide us the fastest way to meet new friends from different faculties. Besides, joining club also allows us to develop our skills to interact with different people who you may never encountered before, and this skills is so important that it makes our life much more easier in this modern society that requires so much communication and cooperation.
    I belong to a New Asia College Non residential hall which aims at providing a place for recreation or meeting friends for the students that do not live in school dormitory. It organizes activities like music concert parties regularly.
    Different students may join different clubs in our school and I don’t think there is a certain kind of clubs that is particularly popular in our school. This is because in our school, students come from families of all walks of life and may share different interests and hobbies. Guys tend to join sports club, and girls tend to join skin care club. But if I have to choose one kind of activities which is quite popular in our school, I will say applying for exchange programs. Why are they so popular in school?
    I think it is because students in our school want to broaden their horizon and want to have a taste in society with different culture. Indeed it is a very good experience which let us know people from all over the world and it also gives us a good chance to live independently which is quite difficult to have in Hong Kong.
    My goals for the future is to find a job that can feed my family and at the same time it allows me to contribute to the society by using what i have learnt in the university. For example, if i can become a teacher, I can earn enough to feed my family in the future, and at the same time i can contribute to the society be engaging in the education sector in my country.
    I think my goal is quite seriously shaped by my country’s culture which emphasize much on having a responsibility to feed and care about your family when you grow up. And most importantly, we are all interdependent and we cannot give up somebody who raise you up when you were young. Therefore, with this kind of traditional beliefs, I always think that i should bare the responsibility of feeding my family no matter how hard I have to work after my graduation.

    SID 1155004073
    Team A of second exchange

  14. Nancy Pham says:

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    __1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    __6_To have fun
    __2_To make your family proud
    __7_To become a more well-rounded individual
    _5__To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    __4_To pursue your passions
    __8_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _3__To one day give back to the community and world at large

    1: To ensure financial/job security in the future
    2: To make your family proud
    As a first generation student of two immigrant parents, I feel a pressure to succeed, not only in academics but also eventually in life financially. Going to Stanford has been a dream for me and for my family (extended and otherwise). For me, making my family proud and ensuring financial/job security in the future go hand in hand, because by being financially stable in the future, it shows how much I’ve achieved the “American dream” and is a goal that is extremely great in my family’s eyes. Because I am the oldest of many cousins, and also one of two cousins going to a university in the United States, I feel it’s also an obligation to set an example, to show that high achievement is possible, no matter your socio-economic status. My financial future is a place where I would like stability, to know that I can provide not only for myself, but for my family, my parents, and any of my cousins who wish to pursue their own dreams.

    5. What is your favorite memory from college so far?
    Everyone please respond to the following question:
    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My favorite memory of college has to be the night I got showered before my birthday. Although I don’t know if this applies in other schools, but it’s such a Stanford tradition to throw your dormmate/friend in the shower the midnight of his or her birthday. My birthday coincided with another guy in the dorm, and instead of being showered, we were thrown outside in (probably) 30 degree weather and drenched with a hose. It was freezing, crazy and completely awesome.

    Goals: I hope to graduate with a major in Biology and a minor in Modern Languages in Chinese and Spanish. In the future, I want to go to med school and specialize in neurology and mental behavioral illnesses, such as schizophrenia. The exchange has been very intriguing for me. For someone familiar with the Asian culture, I understood some of the points the CUHK students made, especially about looking for the “right dream,” but at the same time, the American in me looked more towards my desired dream than a right one. I believe my parents originally thought of the “right dream” for me, but sometime after junior or senior year of high school, they also realized that what I wanted to do could make me happy, and could potentially be right for me. I definitely think my goals and views on life have been shaped by Asian cultural values more than American cultural values.

  15. LEI Mei Fong says:

    Q2. My biggest worry, as a student at CUHK is that I am too stressful all the time. Students in the Psychology department are competitive among most of the others in CUHK. You know as a Psychology student, we need to read many books, journal articles and other related stuff to be more knowledgeable. On the other hand, most of the students would like to be a clinical psychologist in the future. As there are just few seats available for students, usually only top students are preferable. As I am in such a tense atmosphere, I just feel that I cannot be released from my academics. However, I know that managing stress is quite an important way to succeed. If you can manage your stress and not going to be under stress, you will bring your skills and talents into full play. Additionally, another concern is that to maintain a healthy lifestyle in university lift. Except your daily stress, the time you rest, what you eat and how many exercises you take in a day contribute how healthy your body is. Life in CUHK is always full of color that most of the students will join clubs and activities. For me, each of the day I will be full of loadings, dealing with my lectures, works in the club and lab. Sometimes I may not have enough sleep, eating healthy food and sufficient exercise for days. Indeed, you can do everything unless you have a healthy body. So, I think that’s still my top concern. Here, I am still trying to balance my daily schedule with enough sleep hours, healthy food and exercise.

    GOALS: In the future, my goal is to become a clinical psychologist. My main concern is to help the in-need people, minorities that are suffering with psychological illness. It is essential to increase public awareness on the development of mental health. Another important part of my life is to take care my parents, giving them a warm and glorious future in their remaining lifetime. I will try to balance my work but also spending times to take care with them. I believe that they are my most important and lovely people in the world that no matter what I did, their love and care to me remains. I think my goal is somehow shaped by the cultural context, which is favor of family bonding and collectivism. In China, usually family is taking up a top position in one’s life and we are doing the good things for the sake of the entire group of people. As a result, my goal is somehow emphasis on taking care with my family members and striving for a society with equality and harmony.

    Name: LEI MEI FONG, SUSANNA
    SID: 1155000439
    Team A

  16. Gary Lau says:

    Q1
    __5_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _6__To have fun
    __7_To make your family proud
    _1__To become a more well-rounded individual
    _2__To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _3__To pursue your passions
    _8__Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    __4_To one day give back to the community and world at large
    To me, the main reason for coming to college is to become a more well-rounded individual. I think the main purpose of College education, is to help individual to discover and understand his/her own potential. It guides us to think critically, to help us become a rational people.
    Another main reason is to be exposed to diverse experiences and people. College has plenty of opportunity for students to explore, such as exchange, community services, hundreds of student societies for students to join. All these are opportunities that are hard to find elsewhere. By exposing to these activities, we can learn a lot of things that can’t be learn in lectures, such as how to communicate with others, organize events, understanding different cultures, etc. Also, we can meet a lot of new friends, some of them might become our life-long friends. It is important because having a healthy social network is important to our mental health.

    I hope that I can have a happy family in my future. My parents can enjoy their retirement time and stay healthy. I will have a stable relationship with my wife and my children. Also I hope that I can still get in touch with my best friends. I think my goals are greatly affected by Chinese cultural context. Chinese society emphasizes people’s relationship. It values on groups rather than individuals. I guess I’m deeply influenced by this cultural value because I value my success base on the groups I belonged to, my family my company, etc.

    Lau Tin Lok Gary
    1155003587
    Team B

  17. Chan Lok Yi says:

    4) Most of our students have joined clubs. I think it is a part of university life for us to explore more in different aspects. For example we have residential committee (Hall Jong), social service groups, and many others. For me, I am a committee member of Rotaract Club of United College, CUHK. Rotaract Club is a world-wide volunteer social service group, which is under Rotary Club. I gain so much in this club as I learn the experience of organising different public events and have a deep relationship with my fellow committee members. Also I join some short-term events, such as Celebration committee of the anniversary of college. Participating such big events is popular at CUHK. Because students can make new friends in the process of organising events, by working every night, and gain great satisfaction from it.

    Everyone should answer:
    My goal for future is to explore more about the world. I love freedom and like travelling. Perhaps I cannot afford a trip abroad now but I plan to have a half-year trip in Europe or America alone. Because learning to be independent is one of my goal too. I think such a goal is quite related to cultural difference between America and China. Because it seems that there are more concerns and barriers (e.g. studying, safety, delaying future careers etc.) for a Hong Kong student to have such a free trip. But for American students, their family/ culture gives a larger degree of freedom and they get more chances to adventure. Maybe the strict culture in Hong Kong society further motivates me to have a controllable life, but not controlled by my parents or others else.


    Name: Chan Lok Yi , Kathy
    Student ID: 1155002448
    Team: Team C

  18. Sally Cheung says:

    4. Is there a big focus on joining clubs or participating in extracurricular activities at your school? If so, what clubs are you a part of? What kinds of clubs or activities are popular at your school? Describe why you believe these activities are particularly popular at your school.

    I am interested in responding to question 4, because joining clubs on CUHK have made a great impact on me, on different aspects of personal development. At CUHK, there is certainly a big focus on joining clubs. As a freshman, as you are learning to get around on campus in the orientation camp, you also start to learn about different clubs on college and get a basic idea of which one you want to join. It is commonly agreed here that, being on the committee board of a club is one of the five must-do things in college. I think joining clubs is generally popular here because it gives its members a place to belong in, and through different activities you can meet good friends. Moreover, as we are living in a collectivistic society, group identity is quite important to individuals, therefore, it may explain why students at CUHK are very active in joining clubs and becoming committee members.

    There are mainly three types of clubs at CUHK. Firstly, there are clubs for different discipline (e.g. Psychology Society). These clubs organize socializing and leisure activities for the students; they also organize the annual orientation camp for freshmen. Secondly, there are service clubs, like Rotaract Club and YMCA. They organize local and international services and encourage fellow students to join. Thirdly, there are interest clubs or other international organizations like SIFE and AIESEC.

    I was a committee member of the Rotaract Club. I have organized service trips to India and China respectively. Not only I had learned a lot on organizing skills, I also learned to cooperate with others and compromise when needed. I earned experience that helped me to become more mature and more thoughtful about the minorities in our society, as well as my role as a university student.

    Joining service trip during semester break is quite common at CUHK. I think it is because students here are very eager to broaden their horizon and to step out of comfort zone to contribute to the society. It also helps to develop world views and reflect on personal values.

    Everyone please respond to the following question:
    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My goal is to have a respectable career and provide for my parents as well as forming a family of my own. I believe that to a great extent, my goals are shaped by the expectation from others and certain value in our culture. First of all, it is very common that parents in Hong Kong encourage their children to pursue “high-level” career, as discussed in the second exchange. I believe that face concern is also a reason behind. If one’s child has a very respectable occupation (i.e. doctor, lawyer), then one will be praised and envied by relatives and friends, of having higher social status.

    However, in the US, I think people are appreciated by their determination in pursuing their goals in general; it does not matter as much whether it is a down to earth money-making goal. Moreover, I think forming one’s own family is less important in the US culture than the Chinese culture. It is because, in the US, when children finish college, they are considered in dependent from their family. However, for Chinese culture, there’s a saying that “As a mother raise her child for 100 years, she will have to look out for the child for 99 years”. Therefore, it is common here that parent give pressure to their children to get married and have children. Moreover, traditional Chinese also has the preference for big family and passing on the family name.

    Sally Cheung Suet Ying
    1009606081
    Team B

  19. Fan Tsz Chin, Jasmine says:

    Question 1:
    What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    1___To ensure financial/job security in the future
    9___To have fun
    5___To make your family proud
    3___To become a more well-rounded individual
    6___To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    4___To pursue your passions
    7___Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    8___To one day give back to the community and world at large
    2___Other: To figure out my career pathway
    Firstly, going to university is like a ticket for a successful future in Hong Kong. Because the society has a strong stereotype that university graduates represent a certain degree of intelligence and skills, many companies in Hong Kong made university graduation certificate as their entrance requirement in recruiting employees. So, the need to be admitted by university is deeply instilled in Hong Kong students’ minds, even though the admission doesn’t guarantee success upon graduation. As one of the candidates in the Hong Kong education system, I also find that reaching university education level is a must in order to have a respectable job and social status in the future.
    Secondly, I believe that figuring out a career pathway is important when we are attending university. Of course, it is always the earlier the better to have a clear goal in mind, but we usually lack the information towards the career we wanted. University provides us information, resources and guidance. Years of study on specialized subject(s) helps us decide our future career.

    Why do you think most people in America (if you are a Stanford student) /China(if you are a CUHK student) go to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

    1___To ensure financial/job security in the future
    4___To have fun
    3___To make your family proud
    6___To become a more well-rounded individual
    5___To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    7___To pursue your passions
    2___Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    8___To one day give back to the community and world at large
    9___Other

    I think the most important reason for Hong Kong students to attend university is “To ensure financial/job security in the future” which I explained earlier. But the second reason is a bit different. I think a large part of students go to university passively like they don’t have a choice. It is a common logic that Hong Kong students go to primary school, secondary school, and then university. Students simply follow this sequence of education and won’t question about it because that is the trend. The third reason is that they want to make their family proud in a certain extent. The previous generation commonly didn’t receive high education. They are having higher expectations on us in this fast changing and demanding world. Thus, going to university means relieving their concerns.

    Required question:
    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My immediate goal is to explore more new experience in order to find the most suitable direction for myself; thereby, getting a decent job and stable life in the future.
    I think that the Chinese enjoys a relaxing and stable lifestyle, while the Americans pursue an exciting and adventurous lifestyle. As a collective society, family is a great deal to us. A stable life means less family conflict. Also because competition is intense in Hong Kong, the safest way to ensure a stable life is to earn enough money which is related to getting a good job. As I have said before, education level is highly valued as the entrance requirement in companies, there is an urgent for Hong Kong students to go to university in the first place.

    CUHK
    Fan Tsz Chin, Jasmine
    SID: 1155003428

  20. Sin Ka Yiu, Emma says:

    5. What is your favorite memory from college so far?
    I do have many different kinds of memories from college since my first day in CUHK. As I am an introvert, everything in college seems very new to me and makes me a little bit nervous, especially those in the academic area. So I am always seeking a place where I can be with others and have the feeling of doing the same old things again. Finally, I found one and it becomes my favorite memory from CUHK so far, which is the time I played volleyball with the other members in my hostel. I am very fond of playing volleyball since I was in secondary school because I enjoy the feeling of being united and fighting of the same goal together. But after taking the A-level (the public exam that students need to take before entering universities), I had stopped playing volleyball. The loss of happiness had made me more eager to find a chance to participate in this sport again. Fortunately, in semester 2 last academic year, I got a chance to be one of the members of my hostel volleyball team. Although the training schedule was quite tight, I did enjoy training with my teammates as I found back the joy and energy in the sport ground that I had missed for long. I even went training when I was in a serious stomachache! Although all of our teammates come from different departments and different years, we all got along with each other well and friendship has been built up among us. Unfortunately, we lost in our first match, but still it is the match that I had paid the most effort ever on in my entire life. Therefore, my favourite memory is my memory of being my hostel volleyball team member.

    My Future Goal
    My goal for the future is finding a stable job with stable income, which at the same time fits my personality and interest well. Although this goal seems cliché, this is the goal that imprinted in most Chinese’ minds since we are young. It is because in Chinese culture, and like what you might have noticed in the cultural exchanges, family relationship and how children repay their parents’ love and care are heavily stressed. I think my goal is shaped by this cultural sense. Therefore, I hope that I can get a stable job with stable income after graduation such that I can share some of the financial burden of the family and provide my parents a more relaxing life.
    Besides finding a job with stable income, I also hope to find one which suit my personality and interest well. Because here in Hong Kong, most of the people stress the importance of finding a job with high status and high income but never concern about whether it is suitable for you or not. Base on my own knowledge, young adults in western countries are encouraged by their parents to put their interest at the first priority when pursuing their life-long career. But in contrast, our parents and teachers always push us to pursuit one that is higher-paid and with high social status. That’s why many parents, like what Tina had said above, encourage their children to take business as their major in their undergraduate study. But for me, I think that if the job does not suit you well, you will never feel happy and may even think it is a waste of time for spending so much effort on the job even it is well-paid. Therefore, I hope I can get a job that can not only provide stable income but also suit my interest and personality well.
    CUHK
    Sin Ka Yiu, Emma
    SID:1155002381
    Team C

  21. Kate Law says:

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    _1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _8_To have fun
    _4_To make your family proud
    _6_To become a more well-rounded individual
    _5_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _7_To pursue your passions
    _2_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _3_To one day give back to the community and world at large

    “To ensure financial/job security in the future” is the most important reason for me for coming to college. In Hong Kong, a bachelor’s degree is an basic requirement for getting a jobas everyone is a bachelor’s degree holder in this generation. Living in a poor family with low income, I totally understand a good job can guarantee your afterwards living. My father is just a security guard and my mother is a housewife. The monthly income of my father is not so high that mother always need to shop around to find the cheapest goods and father always work more than 12 hours a day just to make a living. What’s the reason of the low income? It’s all about the academic level. Both my father and mother didn’t graduate from primary school. They can’t apply jobs with satisfied salary which can provide you a better life. Therefore, I think a bachelor’s degree is so important for me to ensure financial/job security in the future.
    The second important reason for entering college is that I feel like I don’t have a choice! My teachers and my parents have kept telling me how they wish I could enter college since I was small. It seems that I CAN’T choose another path after finishing high school. It seems that it’s a norm to enter college after the study in high school and I dare not to break this rule.

    Why do you think most people in America (if you are a Stanford student) /China(if you are a CUHK student) go to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    _1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _2_To have fun
    _7_To make your family proud
    _5_To become a more well-rounded individual
    _4_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _8_To pursue your passions
    _3_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _6_To one day give back to the community and world at large

    I think the most important reason for Chinese to go to college is also to ensure financial/job security in the future. As I have mentioned above, people need to be a bachelor’s degree holder so as to get the entrance ticket to interview for jobs. A bachelor’s degree means a lot in China as people tend to look down on other academic achievements.
    The second reason for Chinese to go to college should be to have fun. We all have heard of how amazing university life is since we were small. It’s wonderful that university students can live together and do something interesting together without restricts of our parents. Moreover, they are afraid of the stress they face when they enter the real society with a job. Therefore, in order to have fun for a few more years, they choose to enter college.

    ***What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My goal for the future is to live in a harmonic family happily. To achieve my goal in a concrete way, I hope get a job with reasonable and stable income to ensure the living standard of my family. I won’t force myself too much to attain a higher position as I hate living in a hectic and stressful environment. I have learnt the take-it-easy-attitude from the Americans as they all can perform naturally in any situations while the we are all so nervous to face a sudden change, such as our performance in the first culture exchange. I think my goals have been shaped by the American culture after the culture exchange – I won’t stress myself too much.
    By the way, due to the cultural context in which I live, I still hope to attain a degree so as to pursue a stable and secure job in the future. It’s a rule that I can hardly change without astounding talents. However, I will not blindly pursue for the highest position in a company. Instead, I would treasure my time spending with my family after I get a job with reasonable income which can support my living.

    Name: Law Yuk Ting
    SID: 1155003575
    CUHK, Team A (first exchange)

  22. POON King Yi says:

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    __1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    __8_To have fun
    __3_To make your family proud
    __4_To become a more well-rounded individual
    __2_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    __5_To pursue your passions
    __7_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    __6_To one day give back to the community and world at large
    ___Other
    The most important reason for me to go to university is to ensure financial/job security in the future because university graduate can normally earn a higher salary than people who do not. And financial security is important because it can ensure my standard of living.
    To be exposed to diverse experiences and people is my second reason of going to university. It allows me to diverse my experience such as joining different societies and trying things that I have not tried before.

    Why do you think most people in America (if you are a Stanford student) /China(if you are a CUHK student) go to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.
    __1_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    _8__To have fun
    _2__To make your family proud
    _6__To become a more well-rounded individual
    _5__To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    _4__To pursue your passions
    _3__Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    _7__To one day give back to the community and world at large
    ___Other
    To ensure financial/job security in the future and to make one’s family proud are the most important reason of Chinese students going to university because Chinese parents sees their children having a high earning job as a glorious thing of the family.
    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?
    My goal is to have a job that I like which can support my living
    My culture encourages people to engage in jobs that provide high monetary reward such as doctors and lawyers. My goal is more or less affect by this idea. If my culture encourages people to have jobs that they find rewarding no matter how much money they can earn, I would probably have a different goal such as being a chief. Western culture does not value money as much as Chinese culture does and I think American people would take up jobs that they like without thinking too much about the money that it would bring.

    POON King Yi
    SID: 1155000117
    Team A, CUHK (second exchange)

  23. Chan Shui Fun says:

    My reasons for coming to college are ranked in the following order of importance:
    __2_To ensure financial/job security in the future
    __8_To have fun
    __5_To make your family proud
    __4_To become a more well-rounded individual
    __1_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people
    __7_To pursue your passions
    __6_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice
    __3_To one day give back to the community and world at large
    __9_Other

    The most important reason that I come to college is I would like to be exposed to diverse experiences and people. A university is just like a small society. We can have lots of chances to meet different types of people, not only students of different department, but also students from different cultural backgrounds. I think this kind of experience can help me adapt to real society better. The second reason is that to ensure job security in the future. Honestly speaking, it is more secure to find a job with better payment if we are graduated in University. In my opinion, having a stable income is an important (though not the most) issue we need to face when we have to step out to society.

    One of my goals for the future is to have a job that has a stable and satisfactory income. Moreover, the job I work for is better to be psychology-related, so that I could apply what I have learnt in the university into real life.
    I think my goals have been shaped by the Chinese cultural context in some certain extent. Chinese people always emphasize a lot on their families. Most of us would think that we should try our best to give our family members a stable living environment. Having a stable job can enable us to do this.

    Chan Shui Fun
    SID: 1155002549
    CUHK

  24. Wong Ka Yan says:

    2. What is your biggest worry or concern as a student at CUHK/Stanford?
    1 Finding my passion
    2 Choosing a major
    3 Maintaining a healthy lifestyle
    4 Managing stress
    5 Getting good grades
    6 Fitting in socially
    7 Dealing with financial issues

    As a student at CUHK, I am concerned the most about finding my passion. Most of the University students have goals in their university life. Some of them would like to enjoy a fruitful U-life by joining many activities, while some hope to get a good academic performance in order to get a good job offer or meet the postgraduate program requirement. They will work so hard to achieve their goals. However, some of them may push themselves so hard that they become “emotionless machines” and forget the meaning of doing so. So it is important to find your passion and this can make your university life more enjoyable.

    I also think that choosing a major is important in one’s university life as it is a waste of time and money if you dislike your major.

    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    My goal is to have a happy family with my future husband as I love kids. This may be related to the differences in America and China as China emphasize on the harmony of a family so much. Chinese people treat their family members much better than strangers. However, American people treat their family members and strangers equally.

    CUHK
    Name: Wong Ka Yan
    SID: 1009627311
    Team C

  25. Vera Sham says:

    4. Is there a big focus on joining clubs or participating in extracurricular activities at your school? If so, what clubs are you a part of? What kinds of clubs or activities are popular at your school? Describe why you believe these activities are particularly popular at your school.

    I am interested in responding to this particular question because joining clubs and participating in extracurricular activities have become part of my university life here in CUHK. One of the themes of this year’s orientation camp is “choice and change”, in which freshmen had the opportunity to think deeply before they take action. Being a year 2 student, I had a lot to share because there was many “choices” being a freshman last year. There is a wide range of clubs and societies in CUHK, from clubs promoting the environment, to clubs organising service trips. Different clubs have different focus but what they all aim at, is to unite a group of people having similar interests and thus promoting or organizing something that is meaningful to them.

    For me, I am a member of the hostel committee. It consists of a group of 15 residents in the same hostel and what we do is basically organizing activities for all hall residents. The activities we organise include hall orientation, hostel warming dinner, mid autumn festival party and all kinds of sports activities and competitions with other hostels. Each hostel in the campus has its own committee and we all work differently. Being a hostel committee member, I met people from the same hostel and I almost remember every resident’s name! We make friends with each other and with the other 14 members of the committee, we all become good friends and hang around when we have time. We have dinner together, we cook together and even wake each other up in the morning! It’s like a big and warm family, supporting and loving each other as a family. I really enjoy living with them and having them as my friends. Looking at the joyful faces of our residents when enjoying the activities we organised is such a great success and achievement. We want them to live happily in the hostel and treat it as a place that belong to them – another home. My skills in organizing activities has enhanced and that I become more out going and caring.

    I am also part of a club called The Society of Psychology Promotion. It is a club that helps promoting psychological knowledge to people – internally to students not majoring psychology and externally to the general public. We have organised exhibition, carnival, day camp and school visits etc in order to achieve our goal. This society that I belong is more academic and what I learn is different from that of the hostel committee. It is more psychology-based and that I did learn things that I can’t learn during normal psychology lessons.

    I think clubs that involves exchange opportunities and service trips to foreign countries are popular in CUHK. This may be due to the precious experiences of being out of Hong Kong and to communicate and work with people from different backgrounds. Going to service trips also provide opportunities for students to serve the less fortunate and that showing their love and care to them. As Hong Kong is quite a well developed city, these chances are rare and thus exchange opportunities are popular.

    What are your goals for the future? From what you’ve learned so far about cultural differences in America and China (specifically differences in ideal affect), how do you think your goals have been shaped by the cultural context in which you live?

    In the future, I would like to pursuit a respectable career so that I can support my parents as well as my own family in the future. I think this goal is somehow affected by the traditional Chinese culture that children bear the responsibility of taking care of their parents when they have the ability, so as to “compensate” for their afford in raising up children. Besides, i would also like to have a happy family of my own because I believe seeing my own children growing up is a very pleasant and amazing thing.

    As for people in the US, I believe they focus more on personal achievement and what they want to do in the future but not pursuing in career that makes money only. They may do what they want, not restricted to the society or parents’ expectations.

    Vera Sham Wing Sze
    1155002228

  26. Ray Cheng says:

    Question 2

    _4_ Managing stress
    _3_ Getting good grades
    _5_ Fitting in socially
    _6_ Maintaining a healthy lifestyle
    _1_ Choosing a major
    _2_ Finding my passion
    _7_ Dealing with financial issues

    I think ‘choosing a major’ and ‘finding my passion’ are my biggest concerns as a student at CUHK. From time to time, I would ask myself some questions, ‘Am I in the right place in Psychology?’, ‘Am I still passionate about the learning?’. It is important to review these questions regularly to check whether you are on the right track as I used to believe that tertiary education is a training to prepare you for the future career. Therefore, you might waste the 3-year study if you don’t find the interest in your major. Like me, I have made a major transfer from Biology to Psychology at the end of my first year because across the first year, I knew that I would definitely not further my study in this field and also found my greater interest in understanding behaviors and minds of human beings. That’s why I made this decision.

    Last question

    My goal for future is to first find a financially sustainable job. It is better related to my major and is full of human interactions rather than repetitive work every day. I hope to travel everywhere in the world with my beloved friends or my family when I have leisure time. I would like to experience the different lifestyles and cultures in different countries. I am planning to immigrate to New Zealand when I am retired and live a peaceful life in the countryside with my beloved one.
    I am not sure my future goals are shaped by Chinese/American culture but I do think that I still have the responsibility to look after my parents besides my own personal goals. In Chinese culture, we never become independent even when we are grownup and it is not moral to leave your family members without any care and love.

    Cheng Wing Hung
    1008631274
    Team C, CUHK

  27. Huang Lillian Ting says:

    1. What are your reasons for coming to college? Please rank the following items in order of importance. Then, elaborate on your top 2 or 3 choices.

    __6_To ensure financial/job security in the future

    __4_To have fun

    __5_To make your family proud

    __3_To become a more well-rounded individual

    __2_To be exposed to diverse experiences and people

    __1_To pursue your passions

    __8_Because I feel like I don’t have a choice

    __7_To one day give back to the community and world at large

    ___Other

    I believe that the meaning of life is to realize one’s potential, that is the only way to fully experience one’s life. As the identity is one which we seek for our whole life, therefore it is my first reason for coming to college. The reason why college can act as a place for one to pursue one’s passions is that the depth and diversity of college environment are very essential for enhancing interaction and nurturing inspirations. By exploring your passions to a deep extent, all subjects would point to the same beginning, which is philosophy. By then, one can longitudinally and horizontally be a full person.

    CUHK
    Name: Huang Lillian TIng
    SID: 1155003503

  28. Yu Chin Shan, Koala says:

    Question 4
    One of “the five things that must experience in university life” is joining clubs. Basically, all students in CUHK join at least a club in our university life.
    There are many reasons for students to join clubs. First, students are interested in the club. Second, students want to meet more friends sharing same habit. Third, students want to get some score to apply living in hall. Forth, students want to enhance chance of getting scholarship.
    I am a member of College Student Union. I met good friends in my committee. We cooperate to organize events to server students in our college. Also, we represent our students to express their need, standpoint and opinion. Overcoming difficulties together strengthen bonding between us. As member of Student Union, I can live in hostel without counting how many score ,which I dependent on where your home is and contribution award the college, I have.
    Different students have their own preference toward club. It is hard to say what the kinds of clubs are popular is. Students who want to have more time for revision may tend to join some clubs with lower workload to keep hostel score. However, there is not much this type of clubs. Sometimes, competition between students occurs.
    In fact, I would like to be a psychologist. However, my score is not higher enough to compete with others to get a master degree. I would like to spend more effort on my study hoping that my score can increase. However, if I fail, I would like to find a office job and earn money to support my family.
    I do think that our goals have been shaped by the cultural context because in Hong Kong academic performance usually over-emphasized. When we are young, we are told to work hard in order to study in university and have a stable job with high social position. Goals such as being a pop star, security guards are not encouraged as the income is not stable or low. However, we should bear part of responsibility. This is because we still can be a security guards if we like this and brave enough to do it.

    Koala
    The Chinese University of Hong Kong
    SID:1155003469

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