Nov 18, 2008

The Monash Letters #1

I SET up my Gmail account in Microsoft Outlook recently for easy access and found myself going through old emails that I'd written to family when I started university in Malaysia. Going over them, I was a little surprised at how many emails I had written--I thought I'd written much less than I had. Anyway, I'm going to post some of them here. I just think they're interesting reading. It's like going back in time and meeting myself three years ago.

22 Feb 2005

The international student office is very helpful. I can go to them any time and they will help me out with any dates, deadlines, fees or advice. So I'm not really worried about immigration.

The internet connection is provided by Sunway hostel free of charge.
Of course, it's really paid for by part of our hostel fees. I paid the hostel fees today, by the way. I had to pay RM 1,985, most of it a refundable deposit for my room. The rest was a semester's worth of rent. I have about RM 2,100 in the bank, a few hundred in my wallet, the USD 800 bank draft still being processed. So I'm OK for now. I'm compiling a budget right now, will send it to you guys as soon as it's done.

About drawers, I meant there's no drawer in my desk. There is one inside the cabinet and I keep all my important papers in there. As for the kitchen, there is a medium-sized fridge, and I've put a water bottle, bread, and a sandwich spread in there so far. Technically we are allowed to cook, but not using gas appliances. So a couple of my roommates have got together to buy an electric cooker and use it to cook some of their meals. If I want, I suppose I can buy my share of it and use it too. Right now I'm eating all meals except breakfast outside, keeping daily food expenditure about RM 5.

Had a very interesting time today. The heads of the various departments in the business school talked to us about why we should choose one major or the other. The head of the school talked about the way they expect us to study now (evaluate, critical analysis, synthesis, application, etc.). The student association made us play a couple of games afterwards, like putting on our shoes as fast as possible and striking various poses. Then they gave us a tour of the university building and we had a photo shoot and got our Monash ID cards.

I also allocated my timetable online, from my hostel room, a few hours ago. It works like this: we choose four units to take in the first semester and are enrolled for them. Then we go to the website and choose which classes and lectures we want to attend, by clicking the appropriate buttons. I'm attaching my timetable, so you can see what classes I have. There are lots of abbreviations in it, though. Things like ETW1000 are unit codes. For example ETW1000 represents Business and Economics Statistics. Something like Lt7 means Lecture Theatre 7.
TR3, Tutorial Room 3. 28/2-21/3 means 28 Feb to 21 March.

Tomorrow I have the Diagnostic English Test at 9:30 am (1 hour long). After that I'm more or less free.

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