National University of Singapore

Kuala Lumpur

Thursday, September 11th, 2008

kuala-lumpur.JPGSingapore is the gateway to Southeast Asia; from here many great tourist locations are within reach. Last weekend I had the chance to visit Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia with my new friends in Singapore.

We departed at 10PM on Friday and after 6 hours on the bus we arrived in KL at 4AM the next day. After a brief rest we headed to the famous Petronas Twin Towers, after waiting in line for about an hour we got the tickets to go on to the skybridge on the 41st floor. From there we got to see an overview of the city center.

Food in Malaysia is very similar to food found in Singapore; it’s a mix of Indian, Malay, and Chinese. Most people in Malaysia spoke either Chinese or English so we had no problems with communication. Besides a few landmark buildings and delicious food, KL is also a major shopping city. There are many malls around city center and the prices are often half of those in Singapore. And that’s what we did for the most part besides sightseeing.

Before Leaving

Tuesday, August 26th, 2008

Here are a few things to check out before leaving or deciding to exchange with the National University of Singapore:

University of Wisconsin has a very informative site regarding the exchange programs it offers, UW (University of Washington) should look here for inspiration:
General Information from University of Wisconsin
Student Feedback from University of Wisconsin

National University of Singapore also has some useful pages for reference:
Pre-departure checklist

When applying for housing, make sure to apply for PRINCE GEORGE’S PARK RESIDENCES, this is the hall mostly for international exchange students so the chances of getting accommodation is higher.

Some more random/useful facts:

  • Capital One credit cards don’t charge a forex fee.
  • Public transportation is convenient and taxis are inexpensive.
  • There are three local GSM carriers: SingTel, Starhub, and M1, I recommend Starhub for SMS, bring an unlocked phone and a SIM card can be purchased for S$18 (passport required).
  • Electric outlets are different in Singapore, but don’t buy overpriced adapters in the US, they are everywhere and very cheap in Singapore.

Time has flown by…

Monday, May 19th, 2008

Time has flown by and I can’t believe how long it has been since my last post. Finals just finished up in Singapore, and now 8.jpgit is time to head back home. School out here has been a unique experience out here all the way through finals (which take place in a giant gymnasium with about 800 other students). I really took advantage of being in a new place by venturing outside my comfort zone and trying some classes that had absolutely nothing to do with my major, and instead focused on topics like Singapore business law and Asian history.

Part of the reason why I chose to come to Singapore was the fact that I was going on my own, without knowing anyone before hand. While that made the first few days kind of rough, it was the best decision I could have made in choosing a study abroad location. The network of friends I have made around the world from being here for 5 months astonishes me, and I 7.jpgcan’t wait to visit many of them in the future.

As other blog posts have mentioned, one of the best parts of studying abroad is being able to experience other countries and traveling. South East Asia is an amazing culture shock for anyone who has never visited third world countries before. From Malaysia, to Thailand, to Indonesia, to the Philippines, and many many more, these places are where the real experiences of study abroad are made. I finished up my last bit of traveling by heading down to Bali for a few days. As is always the case when visiting a country for the first time, I had an amazing time. We managed to randomly run into about 15 other exchange students from NUS (National University of Singapore) and SMU (Singapore Management University) every time we turned around. It really was a perfect cap to an amazing semester. From the beaches to renting scooter bikes and exploring the island, there was always something to do. I am excited to give white rice a break and have a nice big sandwich, but I am definitely not looking forward to needing a jacket when I get back home.

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If any of you have any questions about Singapore or SE Asia in general, feel free to reach out and I would be more then happy to be of any assistance. See you back in Seattle.

Cheers,
Neal

Adventures in Singapore and More…

Tuesday, March 11th, 2008

Hey everyone! My name is Neal Mulnick and I am an accounting and information systems major in the Foster School of Business studying abroad in Singapore at the National University of Singapore. I have been in Singapore for about two months so far and am having the time of my life.

School has been surprisingly similar to life at UW, with the nice benefit of being located in clean Singapore while being in the proximity to some of the most culturally rich countries in the world. Singapore itself has an interesting mix of developed skyscrapers while remaining green everywhere you look.

So far I have had the opportunity to visit Malaysia, the Philippines and in a few hours Thailand. In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia we visited the Petronas Towers and the Hindu Batu Caves, in the Philippines we went scuba diving and snorkeling with whale sharks, and much more! The absolutely amazing thing about Southeast Asia is the drastic change in culture with every border you cross. Not to mention Singapore, the multicultural meritocracy with a Chinese majority, surrounded by a Malaya world.

Well, I have to leave for the airport in twenty minutes for my flight to Bangkok, Thailand…so until next time, I look forward to sharing more adventures.