Major: City Studies
Minors: Geography Information System (GIS) & English-Chinese Translation
What factors contributed to you choosing your program(s)?
The reason I choose city study as my major is, as an international student, I would like to know the city first, and browse how the city operate in western countries, while seeing what the relationship is between city planners, government, and the communities.
Can you describe your program(s)? What is it actually like?
City Studies is a mixed-discipline, the program requires students to get information from diverse subjects, such as geography, environment, sociology, policy, and statistics. GIS, the full name is Geography Information System, sounds like a technical issue, and that is correct, GIS is a kind of method which makes information visible on a map. For example, what is the criminal rate in a specific area, one can get the information and see it visually on a map. English-Chinese Translation is the aspect that I am interested in, this program provides me with a deep understanding of the language, and the importance of performing as a translator.
What tips/advice can you provide to students just starting or considering this program(s)?
If you are, like me, not a native English speaker, I would suggest that you do your reading material several times to improve your skills and understanding of the topic. I suggest this as these three programs will offer you huge amounts of readings. Particularly, if you are a social science student, I highly recommend that you take GIS as your minor, as that will help you in the future projects and careers. While, to be honest, it is often hard to get the point of the knowledge at the beginning, as these are new theories and concepts to most students. However, don’t get discouraged, as after you take the B-level GIS course, you will gain better understanding of what the beginning course is talking about. Although the B-level probably will be a tough period for students to learn, just keep going, when you practice more, you will know the material more clearly.
What will you do with your degree after graduation? (Future plans?)
Based on my GIS skills, there are some analytical jobs I can do. Also, city-related jobs, for example, research, project, and so on.
What has your academic journey during your time been like as you progress toward graduation?
I suffered a lot in my first year, I was even on probation for a period of time due to the fact that I am not that familiar with the programs offered by this campus and I had language problems. The language test does not mean you are on the way to success. One year later, I decided to be a city studies student. I learned knowledge from different aspects, while I became more practiced on the academic studying, but I still felt that what I learned was so abstract that I cannot touch it. Thereafter, when I took C level and D level courses, things became better, we had projects that needed to do research and interviews in the community, this time I felt what I learned from the book, has been applied, and I recognized that there are gaps between the readings and the reality.