Sander van der Neut is from the Netherlands and came to Green River Community College winter of 2014 for a one quarter Gap Year Program. His motto? Have fun!
Lansing: Why did you decide to do a one quarter Gap Year?
Sander: I had to pay for this myself. I worked for almost five months, full-time as a salesman trying to get the money I needed. After those five months, I had enough money to go for one quarter.
Lansing: What did you like most about your short time at Green River?
- I made many new friends from around the world. I look forward to the day when these friends come to visit me in the Netherlands and I can visit them in places like Taiwan and Hong Kong.
- This campus is very friendly and not too big. Just the other day I was sitting outside and ten people passed by and said, 'Hi' - some I knew and some I didn't.
- Campus Corner Apartments (student housing) is only a one minute walk from my classes. I really like that.
- My instructors are awesome. They really like international students. They like to hear the international perspective on topics. The American students get a lot from hearing different perspectives too.
- I was impressed by how much support there is for the international students. There is a whole building dedicated to our needs. They provide so many activities and services to help you feel at home. They'd even lead you by the hand if you needed it.
Lansing: What were some of your favorite memories?
- CORE (orientation) was an awesome beginning to the quarter. I knew nobody when I arrived and by the end, I knew everybody.
- At the beginning of quarter my Taiwanese roommate and I couldn't understand each other. We used Google Translate to communicate. By the end of the quarter his English had improved so much that he was one of best in his Intensive English class.
- We had the best dance party at CCA thanks to my neighbor's D.J. equipment, good speakers and disco lights.
Lansing: What will you do after Green River?
Sander: After I leave Green River I will be attending Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and majoring in International Business. Four hundred students apply for only 150 spots. Half go to domestic students and half go to international students. However, because I attended Green River and received an international education for one quarter, I have already been guaranteed admission into VU University Amsterdam.
Lansing: Is there anything else you'd like to add?
"If I had this to do all over again, I wouldn't change a thing. I would do everything the exact same way. I would tell my friends you just have to go. This is something you have to experience to see how awesome it is."
To learn more about Sander's experience at Green River, read his blog http://volgsanderinseattle.blogspot.com/.