I graduated from Qibao High School and currently study at University of Maryland, College Park, and was one of those who was interested in multiple fields of study. I decided to study abroad because I wanted to receive a better education and hoped to establish my own career with personal ability, instead of simply following instructions from the parents. According to my primary investigation among students, who chose to study abroad with me at QB high school then, most of us shared the similar reasons.
As mentioned, I was interested in multiple fields of study then. For example, I used to target journalism as a desired career. The reason why I gave it up was because it might be too hard to graduate and find a proper job afterward. Through the four-year study, mathematics attracted me by its profound knowledge and comprehensive real life practice. These can be shown in research opportunities and career fair.
Research in math is remarkable. Besides opportunities at the Norbert-Wiener Center, there is also REU, the research opportunities for undergraduates. NSF funds the program. An REU Site consists of a group of ten or so undergraduates who work in the research programs of the host institution and each student is associated with a specific research project, where he/she works closely with the faculty and other researchers (“For Students”). There are also programs to enroll without a complicated process of application, such as the Directed Reading Program. The Directed Reading Program (DRP) pairs undergraduate students with graduate student mentors for semester-long independent study projects (“Directed Reading Program”). Students are normally assigned to read a book recommended by the graduate mentor, but topics of projects are usually selected according to the interest of students in the application form. Indeed, besides multiple resources in research, there are also career services available on campus, which helps undergraduates to receive information from criterion and alumni. Even though it was not a unique advantage to major in math, normally, career advice from the department advisor might help more than those in the career center. It is because counselors usually know less than advisors with the professional background in the subject.
Therefore, based on my personal experience, I highly recommend graduating students at Qibao High School to join the community of international undergraduates like me and major in math.
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“For Students”. Natural Science Foundation. https://www.nsf.gov/crssprgm/reu/. Accessed 1 December 2016.
“Directed Reading Program”. University of Maryland. http://drp.math.umd.edu/index.php. Accessed 1 December 2016