Challenges for international students on college campus

There is no question that college is a huge change and the number of changes can be much higher for international students. They are not only going to have to adapt to the college lifestyle, but also to a whole different culture and in many cases and entirely different language.

In this article, we are going to be talking about some of the most common challenges that international students will usually face in a college campus.

New food

This is something that can be quite a challenge for people who come from certain regions of the world because of the many different ingredients that are used to cook in their country of origin.

If there are too many differences in the way that food is cooked, they might experience issues with their digestion and end up with an upset stomach. This is probably one of the most common reasons why Pepto-Bismol is a big seller in most college grounds.

A good solution for this is to find out what kind of foods are most common in the country that the student will be attending college and then they should make sure that they can eat that kind of food if it’s available in their country.

This is a good way to get used to the kind of food that they will be most likely to eat.

New language

This is a very common barrier that many students from all over the world will experience. There are many individuals who get scholarships to colleges that have a completely different language as the primary teaching language and this can be a very difficult thing to handle. Some of them travel and get to their first year of college with nothing but the most basic knowledge of the language that is spoken in that country.

A good way to handle this is to learn the language as soon as the student is told that they have a scholarship or that they have been accepted to a college in a foreign location with a different official language. Another option is to take a special class in college that gives the student an intensive course that will allow them to learn the language faster.

Cultural differences

This is another issue that can be a challenge for students that come from different regions of the world. A student can get involved in awkward situations because they might not know how to behave depending on the location that they are visiting.

There are certain things that people do in some parts of the world that might be considered bad or impolite in other places and vice versa. This could create embarrassing situations when they could easily be avoided.

The best way to handle this is to take the time to learn the basic cultural differences between two countries and regions. This is going to make the process of adapting to a new environment easier for the student. The good news is that the internet offers plenty of information on social etiquette and general traditions that are art of any region of the world.

The weather

This is another challenge that many college students face if they come from a country that has a completely different climate. This is quite common when people from tropical locations visit areas that have colder weather all year long. This can be a very difficult change for some people and it could take a long time to get used to the weather.

The best way to deal with this is to make sure to bring plenty of clothing that will be optimal for the weather in the country you will be visiting. Also, make sure that you get a flu shot that will help you fight the common colds that are caused by sudden weather changes.

Different subjects

There are some college students that are not prepared for certain classes to be part of their required subjects that might seem strange and even useless to them. This is something that can easily be avoided by learning about all the different classes that students are always required to take regardless of their major.


There are many challenges that the international college student will have to face when they travel to a country with a completely different culture, but the important thing for anyone who plans to study abroad is to get ready for the experience in order to soften that cultural shock that can be overwhelming in some cases.