HEY ALL!! I’m going to give you a quick run down of all things Denver and DU, because when I was applying for places last year, it was information like this I desperately needed.
1. The Quarter System
DU operates on a quarter system, which means there are three 10 week semesters instead of two 15 week ones. There are major advantages, but also some disadvantages.
Main Advantage: Winter Break is 6 weeks long, meaning you can travel, ski or just sleep for as long as you want each day! It also means there’s time to head home and see family for Christmas (which is what I’m doing).
Main Disadvantage: It’s a loooot of work! Because the quarter is only 10 weeks, the work is given at a faster pace, and is more intense that the work load at Glasgow. Also, midterms aren’t just something you hear about in American movies, they’re a very real thing. It’s definitely manageable, but takes a lot of getting used to!
The accommodation here is also a lot different to what we’re used to at GU. Here at DU, I
have a roommate and live in what I can only describe as a stereotypical American college dorm; it’s a long corridor of just dorm rooms which each floor sharing a kitchen. Fortunately, I have a meal plan so don’t need to worry about cooking dinner
which is a very big plus, especially after a full day of classes!
Also, all the international exchange students live on one floor known as the ‘Global Res’ floor. It basically means that any Americans that are on this floor applied to live with international students, so you can easily meet some Americans as well as still rely on the other international students when you’re feeling a little homesick.
3. The Scenery
I’ve said it before and I’m going to say it again, I’m still in awe of the scenery here. Last weekend, 20 of us headed up into the mountains to a cabin for the weekend, and I spent the full weekend in disbelief at the views we had. It was an hour and a half drive from DU, and within the first half hour of the journey we were in the mountains. Because it’s getting close to winter, snow had started to appear on the top of the mountains, which felt so weird since it was still shorts weather!
4. School Spirit
School pride is a HUGE part of the American college experience. During orientation week here, all the international exchange students headed to a ‘Pep Rally,’ for the ice hockey team (they’re the main sports team at DU) and it was insane! Everyone there was so hyped about being at DU; it was like a scene out of a movie.
5. Public Transport is FREEEE
So being a college student in Denver means you get an RTD pass, giving you free transport on all buses and trams all in Denver, and out to some surrounding towns and suburbs. Trust me, this is AMAZING! I already know I’m going to miss this when I’m back to Glasgow.
Soooo, hopefully this gives you an idea of life at DU and why I LOVE it here. If you have any questions, drop me a message on Facebook and I’ll do my very best to answer them!