It never seizes to amaze me how Bloomington has so much to offer in terms of diversity. Don’t get me wrong, perhaps it may not measure up to the extravagant pace of New York City or Los Angeles; Bloomington, nevertheless, is an unique oasis in the midst of the farms in the Midwest. From a wide array of ethnic foods to fine arts, Bloomington definitely breaks your stereotype of a small town.
Part of Bloomington’s diversity derives from its student population. With a number of outstanding departments at Indiana University, Bloomington (IUB), students come from around the country and the world to study here. As an international student myself, one of my hesitations about coming to IUB was the difficulty I had as I tried to see myself surviving in a town in the Midwest. However, I was pleasantly surprised when I came. Aside from the beautiful campus, I constantly find myself discovering something new and interesting about this place. SPEA especially played an active role in opening the doors to the community life, as the Graduate Student Association (GSA) planned social events such as wine tasting and assistance to help you become better acquainted with the town.
This month marks the the official year and a half of me being in Bloomington. Given that I was born in Taipei, Taiwan, and lived most of my life in Penang, Malaysia, I would miss the beaches and the city life. However, I find myself enjoying this place. I truly think being at SPEA and in Bloomington sum up to a great deal: a rewarding education, cheap rent (comparatively), and great food and arts in a small town that is “as good as it gets”.