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Handbook for International Students

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					Handbook for International Students




              Published By

        International Student Office
           Office of Diversity and
   International Education and Programs
       The University of West Florida
             Pensacola, Florida
                    The!University!of!West!Florida!used!The!University!of!Iowa’s!Handbook!
for! International! Students! and! Professionals! by! Gary! Althen! as! its! model.! Our! book! is!
organized!according!to!Mr.!Althen’s!handbook!modified!for!The!University!of!West!Florida!
and!Pensacola!area.!Sections!on!Culture!Shock,!the!Monetary!System,!U.S.!Health!Care,!
U.S.! Educational! System,! Getting! Along! With! Americans,! and! Holidays! in! the! U.S.,! were!
taken!directly!from!the!model.!The!Handbook!for!International!Students!also!refers!to!the!
International! Student! Handbook! compiled! by! the! Student! Affairs! staff! assisted! by! Dr.!
Linda!Dye!and! graduate! students!Shawn! Hipsley,! Angiel!Wells,!and!Abdelhay!Moudden.!
We!hope!that!the!handbook!assists!you!and!is!used!as!a!reference!book!during!your!stay!
in!Pensacola.!Mr.!Greg!Chapman!contributed!sections!on!alcohol!and!drugs!and!assisted!
with!the!revision!of!the!section!on!slang.! !
!
!        !          The! Office! of! Diversity! and! International! Education! and! Programs! is!
here! to! assist! you! should! any! questions! or! problems! arise! during! your! educational!
endeavors!at!the!University!of!West!Florida.!
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!        !          This!edition!of!the!Handbook!was!revised!fall!2008.!
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!        !          *The! University! Catalog! –! The! University! of! West! Florida! catalog! lists!
the! current! curriculum,! educational! plans,! offerings,! and! requirements! and! should! be!
used!as!a!reference!for!academic!information.!
!        !          **! The! Student! Handbook! "! lists! the! student! services! and! activities!
available!on!campus.!



                                                                                                        2
                                TABLE OF CONTENTS
                                                                                                           Page!
Chapter!One!
       Introduction
       I.    History! of! Pensacola…………………………………………………………………..! ! 5!
       II.   Location! and! Climate………………………………………………………………….! ! 5!
!
Chapter!Two!
!     Getting Settled
       I.         Housing……………………………….…………………………………………………….! ! 6!
       II.        Buying……………………………………………………………………………………….! ! 9!
       III.       Dealing! with! “Culture! Shock”…………………………………………………….! ! 11!
       IV.        Adjusting! to! a! New! Culture………………………………………………………..! ! 13!
       V.         Thinking! about! Going! Home………………………………………………………! ! 14!
!
Chapter!Three!
!      Education and Student Life
       I.    Keys! to! Academic! Success…………………………………………………………! ! 15!
       II.   Understanding! the! Academic! System……………………………………....! ! 16!
       III.  Student! Services……………………………………………………………………….! ! 23!
       IV.   Student! Activities………………………………………………………………..……! ! 25!
!
Chapter!Four!
!      Legal Information
       I.     Summary! of! Your! Legal! Responsibilities………………………..………….! ! 27!
       II.    Enforcement! of! Immigration! Laws……….…………………………………..! ! 28!
       III.   Basic! Travel! Documents……………………………………………………………! ! 28!
       IV.    Types! of! Visas! and! Regulations………………………………………...……..! ! 29!
       V.     Becoming! a! Permanent! Resident………………………...…..………….....! ! 32!
       VI.    Income! Tax………………………………………………………………………………! ! 33!
       VII.   Social! Security! ……………………….……………………………………………….! ! 34!
       VIII.  Tax! Clearance! for! Departing! the! U.S...........................................! ! 35!
!
Chapter!Five!
!      Pensacola Living
       I.    Management! of! Money..................................................................! ! 36!
       II.   Medical! Care! and! Expenses............................................................! ! 40!
       III.  Services......................................................................................! ! 42!
       IV.   Housekeeping............................................................................! ! 46!
       V.    Recreation.................................................................................! ! 46!
       VI.   Activities! for! Spouses! and! Children...........................................! ! 47!
       VII.  Cars! and! Bicycles.......................................................................! ! 49!
       VIII. Getting! Along! with! U.S.! Americans...........................................! ! 51!
       IX.   Holidays! in! the! United! States....................................................! ! 60!
!



                                                                                                                     3
Appendix!I!
                                                  !           !
!      Expressions/Slangs.......................................................................................! ! 63!

Appendix!II!
!     Sizes,       Weights, and Measurements...........................................! ! 69!




                                                                                                                          4
                                            Chapter One
                                           Introduction
!
!         Welcome!to!the!Pensacola!Community.!The!information!in!this!handbook!should!help!you!
become!more!oriented!to!the!physical!facilities,!as!well!as!the!social,!cultural,!and!recreational!offerings!
of!the!area.!We!hope!that!you!find!your!stay!in!Pensacola!both!pleasurable!and!educational.!
!
     I.     History!of!Pensacola!
!
               Pensacola!was!founded!by!Don!Tristan!de!Luna,!colonizer!under!King!Phillip!of!Spain,!on!
    August!14,!1559.!This!was!six!years!before!the!settlement!of!St.!Augustine!which!is!the!oldest!
    continuing!city!in!the!United!States.!Two!years!after!the!founding!of!the!Pensacola!settlement,!it!was!
    abandoned!because!of!dissension!among!its!inhabitants!and!was!not!reestablished!until!1696.!
               !
               In!1718,!Pensacola!was!captured!by!the!French!and!within!two!years!the!Spanish!were!again!in!
    control.!Later!in!the!century,!it!was!given!to!the!British!and!subsequently,!returned!to!the!control!of!the!
    Spanish!in!1781.!
               !
               The!year!1821!saw!the!cession!of!Florida!to!the!United!States.!During!the!Civil!War,!the!city!
    once!again!changed!hands!when!Pensacola!was!under!the!control!of!the!Confederate!Government.!At!
    that!time,!Union!Forces!evacuated!Fort!San!Carlos!and!Fort!Barrancas!in!favor!of!the!more!defensible!
    Fort!Pickens!on!Santa!Rosa!Island.!In!1862,!the!Confederate!Government!abandoned!the!city!to!the!
    Union!Forces,!and!once!again!Pensacola!flew!the!flag!of!the!United!States.!
               !
               Pensacola!remembers!its!history!through!its!choice!of!a!nickname,!the!City!of!Five!Flags.!This!
    history!is!celebrated!during!the!month!of!June!in!a!week"long!pageant!known!as!the!“Fiesta!of!Five!
    Flags.”!This!pageant!is!much!like!the!Mardi!Gras,!complete!with!balls,!parades,!a!treasure!hunt,!cultural!
    and!sports!events,!and!a!masked!Don!Tristan!de!Luna!debarking!from!his!boat!onto!Santa!Rosa!Island.!
                       !
     II.    Location!and!Climate!
!
              The!city!of!Pensacola!is!located!in!Escambia!County,!in!the!extreme!northwestern!part!of!
    Florida.!The!University!of!West!Florida!is!approximately!twelve!miles!from!downtown!Pensacola!and!
    nine!miles!from!the!municipal!airport,!while!Pensacola!Junior!College!is!approximately!two!blocks!from!
    the!airport.!Escambia!County!extends!from!the!Gulf!of!Mexico!to!the!Alabama"Florida!border,!a!
    distance!of!50!miles.!Pensacola!is!situated!in!a!warm!temperature!zone,!and!its!climate!is!typical!of!the!
    region!along!the!upper!Gulf!Coast.!The!winters!are!mild!and!the!summer!heat!is!tempered!by!the!
    southerly!prevailing!winds!from!the!Gulf!of!Mexico.!Winter!temperatures!(from!December!through!
    February)!average!54°F,!and!summer!temperatures!(from!June!through!August)!average!87°F.!You!will!
    find!it!necessary!to!have!some!heavy!clothing!for!the!winter!months.!
            !
            !
            !
            !


                                                                                                     5
                                            Chapter Two
                                        Getting Settled
!
     I.     Housing!
             !
             In!general,!inexpensive!off"campus!housing!that!is!within!walking!distance!of!the!campus!is!
    relatively!rare.!When!deciding!where!to!live,!you!will!want!to!consider!such!factors!as!those!given!in!the!
    chart!on!page.!Types!of!student!housing!at!UWF!include!private!and!two"student!housing!for!single!
    students!in!University!residence!halls.!The!University!also!has!a!limited!number!of!apartments!available!
    for!married!students.!All!of!the!rooms!in!University!residence!halls!are!furnished.!
                     !
            Residence!Halls!(usually!called!“dormitories”!or!“dorms”)!
                     !
             New!students!frequently!live!on"campus!because!dorms!are!inexpensive!and!convenient.!They!
    are!close!to!academic!buildings!and!are!already!furnished.!Some!of!the!residence!halls!are!equipped!
    with!the!facilities!necessary!for!students!to!prepare!their!own!meals.!Such!communal!cooking!facilities!
    are!located!in!a!residence!hall!or!hall!cluster!and!consist!of!a!stove,!sink,!and!microwave.!Dorms!also!
    afford!excellent!opportunities!to!interact!with!U.S.!American!students.!Dorm!space!is!in!heavy!demand!
    and!may!not!be!available!at!the!opening!of!the!fall!or!spring!semester!for!those!who!have!not!applied!
    early!enough.!Up"to"date!information!about!residence!halls!including!rates,!rules,!furnishings,!activities!
    and!optional!services,!is!available!from!the!Office!of!Housing!in!Building!21.!
                     !
             Married!Student!Housing!
                     !
             On"campus!family!housing!is!available!only!to!those!married!couples!who!have!no!children,!or!
    one!child!under!the!age!of!one!year!old.! ! Family!housing!is!in!heavy!demand!and!is!frequently!
    unavailable!at!the!opening!of!the!fall!and!spring!semesters.!There!is!generally!a!waiting!list.!
                     !
            Off"Campus!Housing!
              !
            Rooms!–!A!“room”!has!facilities!for!sleeping!and!studying.!It!may!be!in!a!private!house,!or!it!may!
    be!in!a!“rooming!house,”!where!there!are!many!sleeping/studying!rooms.!In!either!case,!bathrooms!are!
    usually!shared!with!other!residents.!There!may!be!or!not!be!“kitchen!privileges,”!meaning!access!to!
    cooking!facilities.!Rents!range!from!$100"$200!monthly.!
            !
            Apartment!–!An!apartment!is!a!complete!living!unit,!with!no!facilities!other!than!laundry!
    machines!that!must!be!shared!with!other!residents!in!the!apartment!building.!An!“efficiency!
    apartment”!has!two!rooms:!a!bathroom!and!another!large!room!that!serves!as!a!kitchen,!bedroom,!and!
    living!room.!It!is!suitable!for!one!or!perhaps!two!people.!There!are!also!one,!two,!and!three!bedroom!
    apartments.!“Unfurnished!apartments”!have!only!a!refrigerator,!stove,!and!window!covering,!and!the!
    renter!must!acquire!all!other!furniture!that!is!needed.!A!“furnished!apartment”!includes!all!furniture,!
    but!not!linens!(towels,!sheets,!etc.)!or!cooking!and!eating!utensils.!Since!unfurnished!apartments!cost!
    less,!and!inexpensive,!second"hand!furniture!is!easy!to!buy!and!sell!in!Pensacola,!students!who!will!be!
    here!for!at!least!one!or!two!years,!may!find!it!to!their!financial!advantage!to!rent!an!unfurnished!
    apartment!and!buy!used!furniture!for!it.! ! A!furnished!apartment!costs!more!but!eliminates!the!need!to!


                                                                                                     6
    buy!furniture.!A!renter!or!“tenant”!usually!has!to!pay!for!his/her!own!utilities!(electricity,!gas,!water,!
    telephone),!although!the!monthly!rent!may!include!some!of!these.! !
           !
           Finding!Off"Campus!Housing!
             !
             The!office!of!Housing,!located!in!Building!21,!has!information!about!apartments!in!the!Pensacola!
    area.!Check!ads!in!the!Voyager,!local!newspapers,!and!on!campus!bulletin!boards.!
             !
             The!Lease!–!A!lease!is!a!written!agreement!between!a!tenant!and!landlord!describing!the!rights!
    and!responsibilities!of!each.!It!is!a!binding!legal!document!which!among!other!things,!makes!the!tenant!
    responsible!for!minimal!care!of!the!rented!property!and!for!the!monthly!rent!of!the!stated!amount.!It!
    specifies!the!landlord’s!responsibilities!for!maintenance!and!repair!of!the!housing!unit.!A!lease!may!or!
    may!not!contain!provisions!concerning!its!early!termination.!
             !
             When!you!sign!a!lease,!you!will!usually!have!to!pay!a!“damage!deposit”!or!a!“security!deposit”!
    which!may!amount!to!as!much!as!one!month’s!rent.!The!deposit!is!returned!to!you!when!you!leave!if!
    you!have!not!damaged!the!quarters!and!if!you!have!cleaned!them!adequately;!otherwise,!the!landlord!
    keeps!the!deposit.!
             !
             What!to!look!for!in!a!lease!–!Make!sure!that!you!can!keep!the!room!or!apartment!for!as!long!as!
    you!wish!and!that!it!is!not!binding!for!a!time!period!longer!that!you!anticipate!needing!the!housing.!See!
    whether!the!lease!is!renewable!by!the!month!or!the!year.!See!whether!you,!the!renter,!can!“break”!the!
    lease!with!a!month’s!or!two!month’s!notice!to!the!landlord.!In!the!absence!of!such!a!provision,!you!may!
    be!required!to!pay!rent!until!the!end!of!the!period!covered!in!the!lease!if!you!move!out!and!live!
    elsewhere.!Many!unpleasant!disputes!arise!between!landlords!who!want!to!keep!their!property!rented!
    and!student!renters!who,!after!signing!a!lease,!decide!for!some!reason!that!they!wish!to!live!elsewhere.!
    Or,!if!the!lease!allows!it,!you!may!be!able!to!“sublet”!your!room!or!apartment.!That!means,!essentially,!
    that!you!find!another!tenant!to!replace!yourself.!
             !
             See!what!utilities!you!are!responsible!for.!Ask!the!landlord!or!a!current!tenant!what!the!average!
    utility!costs!are!because!they!will!be!added!to!the!rent.! ! With!this!information,!you!will!be!able!to!
    determine!your!monthly!housing!cost!and!properly!budget!your!money.!Be!sure!that!proper!winter!
    temperature!control!and!monthly!insect!extermination!are!guaranteed!in!your!lease.! !
             !
             Many!restrictions!and!inclusions!may!be!in!a!lease.!Common!ones!pertain!to!children!and!pet!
    animals.!Some!landlords!allow!neither;!most!landlords!do!not!permit!pets.!
             !
             Questions!about!leases!–!Any!questions!about!landlord"tenant!relationships!can!be!directed!to!
    the!Escambia!County!Landlord!and!Tenant!Office!at!telephone!(850)!436"5260.!This!association!assists!
    both!tenants!and!landlords.!For!more!information,!the!pamphlet,!Landlord,!Tenant!and!the!Law!may!be!
    obtained!from!the!Division!of!Consumer!Services,!110!Mayo!Building,!Tallahassee,!Florida!32301,!and!
    telephone!(800)!435"7352.!
             !
             !
             !
             !
!



                                                                                                        7
        FACTOR!                     RESIDENCE!HALL! !             OFF"CAMPUS!HOUSING!
!                               !                                 !
Availability!     !    !!!!!!   In!very!short!supply!at!          Rooms!or!apartments!that!are!
                                                                  reasonably!priced!and!relatively!
!                               opening!of!fall!semester,!        close!to!the!campus!are!in!short!
!                               somewhat!more!available!          supply;!quarters!that!are!more!
!                               later;!temporary!quarters!        expensive!or!further!away!are!also!
!                               usually!available!                scarce,!especially!at!the!opening!of!
!                               !                                 the!fall!term.!
                                                                  !
!                               !
                                                                  May!be!within!walking!
Convenience!                    Very!close!to!academic!
                                                                  distance!of!the!campus,!
Location!                       buildings!and!campus!
                                                                  public!transportation!route;!if!
!                               activities!
                                                                  not,!a!car!may!be!needed!
!
                                                                  !
!
                                Supplied!                         Sometimes!supplied!
Furnishings!
                                !                                 !
!
                                U.S.!American!style!meals!        Shopping!(for!groceries)!and!
Cooking!
                                provided!on!a!fixed!schedule!     cooking!must!be!done,!but!
!
                                on"campus!by!University!          you!can!prepare!the!kind!of!
!
                                Food!Service!                     food!you!are!accustomed!to!
!
                                !                                 eating!
!
                                !                                 !
!
                                                                  More!expensive!than!a!dorm,!you!
Cost!(Continuously!             Total!costs!lower!than!for!
                                                                  can!find!inexpensive!room!and!
changing—see!information)!      more!expensive!room!or!apt.!      spend!less!than!average!on!food!or!
!                               and!average!or!above!average!     share!costs!with!several!people!
!                               food!costs!                       living!together!
!                               !                                 !
!                               !                                 Less!expensive,!frequently!old!
Condition!of!Housing!           Clean,!well"kept!                 and!in!need!of!repairs!but!can!
!                               !                                 be!made!comfortable!
!                               !                                 !
Privacy!                        Many!fellow!residents;!           Quieter,!more!privacy!
!                               sometimes!considerable!noise!     !
                                                                  !
!                               !
                                                                  Restricted!opportunities!to!
Educational!                    Unlimited!opportunity!to!use!
                                                                  use!English!and!interact!with!
!                               English!and!interact!with!U.S.!
                                                                  U.S.!Americans!(unless!you!
!                               Americans!
                                                                  have!a!U.S.!roommate)!
!                               !
                                                                  !
Legal!Obligations!              “Contract”!for!entire!
                                                                  “Lease”!nearly!always!
!                               academic!year—contract!can!
                                                                  required—leases!have!varying!
!                               be!broken!only!in!very!
                                                                  terms!
!                               unusual!cases!
                                                                  !
!                               !
!                               !
   II.   Buying!
!
!           Most!items!can!be!purchased!form!a!variety!of!stores.!Since!prices!and!quality!may!
vary,!it!is!helpful!to!become!acquainted!with!those!stores!where!you!can!shop!most!
conveniently!and!economically.!Such!information!is!available!from!people!who!have!lived!in!
Pensacola,!from!advertisements!in!newspapers,!and!from!the!“yellow!pages”!section!of!the!
telephone!directory.!You!can!ask!a!store!employee!whatever!questions!you!wish!about!a!
product!without!being!obligated!to!buy!anything.!Prices!in!stores!are!fixed.!A!shopper!does!not!
“bargain”!with!the!store!employee!for!a!lower!price.!
!
!           Many!stores!operate!on!a!“self"service”!basis.!In!these!stores,!the!shopper!uses!
available!a!basket!or!a!cart!and!selects!the!merchandise!desired.!The!merchandise!is!then!taken!
to!the!cashier!who!totals!the!amount!of!the!purchase!and!adds!the!appropriate!sales!tax.!If!you!
need!help!in!making!your!selections,!you!have!to!find!a!clerk!to!help!you.!Sometimes!it!is!
difficult!to!find!the!clerk.!
!
!           When!you!buy!something!other!than!food,!it!is!advisable!to!keep!the!receipt!you!get!
when!you!pay!for!the!item.!You!will!need!the!receipt!in!case!you!need!to!return!an!item!which!is!
defective!or!unsatisfactory!to!the!store!where!you!bought!it.!The!receipt!proves!you!made!the!
purchase.!
!
!           The!remainder!of!this!section!of!the!Handbook!is!intended!to!give!an!idea!where!
different!kinds!of!merchandise!are!available!for!purchase.!It!is!advisable!to!ask!someone!who!is!
familiar!with!Pensacola!when!you!have!doubts!about!where!to!go!to!buy!something.!
!
!           FOOD!
!
!           There!are!two!general!kinds!of!food!stores,!“supermarkets”!and!“convenience!stores.”!
A!supermarket!is!a!large!store!which!sells!not!only!groceries!but!also!paper!goods,!kitchen!
supplies,!and!health!and!beauty!aids.!Supermarkets!in!Pensacola!include!Food!World,!Winn!
Dixie,!Albertson’s,!and!Publix.!Convenience!stores!are!smaller,!have!far!fewer!non"food!items,!
sometimes!have!longer!hours!of!business,!and!charge!somewhat!higher!prices.!Convenience!
stores!include!“Circle!K,”!“Tom!Thumb,”!etc.,!and!they!are!usually!open!24!hours!a!day.!Most!
people!do!nearly!all!their!food!shopping!at!the!supermarket!most!convenient!for!them!and!go!to!
convenience!stores!only!to!buy!one!or!two!items!needed!quickly.! !
!
!           Food!items!from!your!country!may!not!be!available!in!the!supermarket,!but!it!may!be!
available!from!a!specialty!food!store!in!Pensacola.!Ask!other!students!here!from!your!country!
where!they!buy!such!items.
!
!           CLOTHING!
!
!           Clothing!is!for!sale!in!clothes!stores!(usually!separate!stores!for!men’s!and!women’s!
clothing),!department!stores!(which!have!“departments”!for!selling!everything,!not!only!
clothing,!but!hardware,!appliances,!furniture,!material!and!sewing!supplies,!kitchen!utensils,!
shoes,!books,!records,!and!toys)!and!at!second!hand!stores!such!as!the!Salvation!Army!(which!
sell!used!merchandise!at!low!prices).!
!
!          FURNITURE!
!
!          Buying!furniture!for!a!new!apartment!can!be!a!large!undertaking.!So!this!section!
includes!extensive!information!on!place!to!look!for!less!expensive!furniture.!
!
!          Furniture!stores,!department!stores,!and!second"hand!stores!all!sell!furniture.!In!
addition,!used!furniture!is!often!available!from!private!individuals!who!have!“garage!sales”!at!
their!homes!or!who!advertise!items!they!wish!to!sell!in!the!classified!section!of!the!newspaper.!
Advertisements!about!garage!sales!or!items!for!sales!by!private!individuals!are!found!in!the!
Voyager!which!advertises!both!new!and!used!goods,!not!only!furniture!but!household!goods,!
cars,!etc.,!and!the!Pensacola!News!Journal!under!“classified!advertisements.”!These!are!
organized!under!headings!such!as!“autos,”!“household!goods,”!“furniture,”!and!
“miscellaneous.”!
!
!          You!can!purchase!used!furniture!at!the!following!places:!
!
               ! Brother’s!Used!Furniture! !           1717!N.!“T”!Street! ! ! ! 433"7030!
               ! Carroll’s!Furniture!         !        2001!N.!“T”!Street! ! ! ! 433"2740!
               ! Garrett’s!Used!Furniture! !           3501!Fairfield!Drive! ! ! 433"1388!
               ! Salvation!Army! !            !        2600!N.!“T”!Street! ! ! ! 434"1453!
!          !
!          The!Loan!Closet!through!the!Student!Affairs!Office!at!UWF!(474"2384)!is!a!place!
where!you!can!borrow!items!and!return!them!when!they!are!no!longer!needed!or!at!the!time!
of!leaving!UWF.!Items!include!kitchen!utensils,!blankets,!and!a!few!electrical!appliances.!         !
!
!          Drug!Stores!and!Pharmacies!sell!many!things!besides!drugs.!There!is!always!a!
registered!pharmacist!on!duty!to!fill!a!doctor’s!prescription.!There!is!a!drug!store!open!in!some!
part!of!the!city!everyday!from!as!early!as!7:30!a.m.!to!as!late!as!10:00!p.m.!Supplies!for!babies,!
sanitary!good,!patient!medicines,!first!aid!supplies,!toiletries!and!other!items!of!a!similar!
nature!may!be!found!in!a!drug!store.! !
!
!          Hardware!Stores!specialize!in!building!supplies!and!household!repair!items.!Here!you!
will!find!paint,!varnish!and!light!tools.!
!
!          Variety!Stores!all!carry!a!wide!selection!of!inexpensive!items.!Here!you!will!find!
plastic!articles,!some!dishes!and!glassware,!household!items,!cooking!utensils,!paper!goods,!
some!clothes!and!toys.!Some!of!them!also!have!small!hardware!items!like!nails,!screws,!nuts!
and!bolts,!small!hammers!and!other!light!tools!you!might!use!around!the!house.!(Wal"Mart,!
K"Mart,!etc.)!


                                                                                           10
!
!          BOOKS!
!
!          The!main!supplier!of!textbooks!in!Pensacola!is!the!University!Bookstore!in!the!
Commons.!There!is!also!Lemox!Book!Store!(478"2081)!located!at!1014!Underwood!Avenue!
which!sells!used!and!new!textbooks.! ! You!may!also!choose!to!purchase!your!books!online.!
!
!          ALCOHOLIC!BEVERAGES!
!
!          Beer!is!sold!at!most!supermarkets,!convenience!stores,!many!gas!stations,!and!most!
liquor!stores.!Wine!is!sold!at!supermarkets!and!liquor!stores.!Liquor!is!only!sold!at!liquor!stores.!
Florida!law!prohibits!anyone!who!is!not!21!years!or!older!from!possessing,!consuming,!buying,!
selling,!giving,!serving,!or!permitting!to!be!served!any!kind!of!alcoholic!beverage.!Bars,!taverns,!
cafes,!lounges,!clubs,!nightclubs,!and!some!eating!establishments!sell!alcoholic!beverages!by!
the!drink.!Many!places!in!the!Pensacola!area,!where!beverage!alcohol!by!the!drink!is!sold,!will!
allow!an!underage!person!(anyone!who!is!not!yet!21!years!old)!to!enter!but!will!not!serve,!sell!
or!allow!the!consumption!of!beverage!alcohol!by!the!underage!person.!There!are!no!minimum!
age!restrictions!to!go!into!any!eating!establishment!that!may!also!serve!beverage!alcohol!by!
the!drink,!as!long!as!you!are!going!into!the!establishment!to!eat.!Many!establishments!that!
offer!entertainment!and!serve!beverage!alcohol!to!drink,!do!have!minimum!age!requirement!
to!enter!which!is!18!years!or!older.!Proving!that!you!are!21!years!old!is!done!by!showing!an!
acceptable!form!of!identification!such!as!a!Florida!driver’s!license,!a!Florida!identification!card!
or!an!official!passport.!
!
!          SHOPPING!CENTERS!
!
!          Malls!or!shopping!centers!are!places!where!a!number!of!small!stores!are!clustered!
together!for!the!shopper’s!convenience.!Some!of!the!larger!shopping!centers!are:!
!
               ! Cordova!Mall! !               !       9th!and!Bayou!Boulevard!
               ! University!Mall! !            !       Davis!Highway!and!I"10!
!
    III.   Dealing!With!Culture!Shock! !
!
             A.!What!It!Is!
!          !      “Culture!Shock”!refers!to!a!feeling!of!disorientation!or!confusion!that!often!
occurs!when!a!person!leaves!a!familiar!place!and!moves!to!an!unfamiliar!one.!Coming!to!
Pensacola!from!another!country,!you!no!doubt!encountered!a!multitude!of!new!things.!The!
buildings!look!different,!and!so!do!the!trees!and!the!birds.!The!food!is!not!the!same!as!it!was!at!
home,!and!the!people!look,!speak,!and!act!differently!from!the!people!at!home.!Your!English!
might!not!serve!you!as!well!as!you!expected!it!would.!You!might!not!be!able!to!convey!your!full!
personality!in!English,!with!the!result!that!you!think!other!people!see!you!as!a!child.!And!your!
family!and!friends!are!far!away.!As!a!result!of!all!this,!you!may!feel!confused!or!unsure!of!yourself,!



                                                                                           11
and!you!may!have!some!doubts!about!the!wisdom!of!your!decision!to!come!here.!
!
!          B.!Symptoms!
!           ! ! Some!people!are!more!affected!by!culture!shock!than!others.!Those!who!do!
experience!it!tend!to!become!nervous!and!unusually!tired.!They!want!to!sleep!a!lot!and!write!
many!letters!home.!They!may!feel!frustrated!and!hostile!toward!their!host!country.!They!may!get!
excessively!angry!about!minor!irritations.!It!is!not!unusual!for!them!to!become!very!dependent!on!
fellow!nationals!who!are!also!in!a!new!country.!All!of!these!feelings!may!make!it!difficult!to!deal!
with!the!residents!of!the!host!country!and!to!use!their!language.! !
!
!           C.!Coping!with!Culture!Shock!
!           ! ! Different!people!react!differently!to!culture!shock.!Some!become!depressed,!
while!others!are!stimulated!by!the!new!experiences!that!are!open!to!them.!Here!are!some!ideas!
that!might!be!helpful.!
!
         1. Maintain!your!perspective.!Try!to!remember!that!others!have!come!to!Pensacola!
             from!other!counties!and!have!survived.!
         2. Evaluate!your!expectations.!Your!reactions!to!the!United!States!and!to!Pensacola!and!
             the!University!are!products!both!of!the!way!things!are!here!and!the!way!you!expected!
             them!to!be.!If!you!find!yourself!feeling!confused!or!disappointed!about!something,!
             ask!yourself,!“What!did!I!expect?”!“Why?”!“Was!my!expectation!reasonable?”!If!you!
             determine!that!you!expectations!were!unreasonable,!you!can!do!much!to!reduce!the!
             amount!of!dissatisfaction!you!feel.! !
         3. Keep!an!open!mind.!People!in!Pensacola!might!do!or!say!things!that!people!at!home!
             would!not!do!or!say.!But!the!people!in!Pensacola!are!acting!in!accordance!to!their!
             own!set!of!values,!not!yours.!Try!to!find!out!how!they!perceive!what!they!are!saying!
             and!doing,!and!try!to!avoid!evaluating!their!behavior!using!the!standards!you!would!
             use!in!your!own!country.!
         4. Learn!from!the!experience.!Moving!into!a!new!culture!can!be!the!most!fascinating!
             and!educational!experience!of!your!life.!It!gives!you!the!opportunity!to!explore!an!
             entire!new!way!of!living!and!compare!it!to!your!own.!There!is!no!better!way!to!
             become!aware!of!your!own!values!and!attitudes!and!to!broaden!your!point!of!view.!
             Here!are!some!questions!that!you!might!try!to!answer!as!you!encounter!the!local!
             people:!How!do!they!make!friends?!How!do!friends!treat!each!other?!Who!respects!
             whom?!How!is!respect!shown?!What!attitudes!do!they!have!about!their!families?!
             What!is!the!relationship!between!males!and!females?!Why!do!people!spend!their!
             time!the!way!they!do?!How!do!they!deal!with!conflicts!or!disagreements?!What!do!
             they!talk!about?!When!and!with!whom?!How!often!do!they!“take!turns”!during!a!
             conversation?!What!kind!of!evidence!do!they!seek!or!use!when!evaluating!an!idea!or!
             trying!to!win!an!argument?! !
             ! There!are!countless!other!questions!you!can!ask.!You!can!compare!the!answers!you!
             get!to!the!answers!you!would!get!to!the!same!questions!in!your!country,!and!you!can!
             thereby!help!yourself!develop!a!better!understanding!of!your!own!society!and!of!the!
             one!where!you!are!living!now.! !


                                                                                       12
         5. Visit!the!International!Student!Advisor.!A!discussion!with!the!International!Student!
            Advisor!can!help!in!achieving!a!useful!perspective!on!culture!shock!and!the!learning!
            possibilities!it!implies.!
!
    IV. Adjusting!to!a!New!Culture!
!
!         Since!you!are!in!a!new!setting,!you!will!have!to!make!certain!adjustments!or!
adaptations!in!your!usual!behavior!and!attitudes.!It!is!instructive!to!observe!your!own!
reactions!to!being!in!a!new!culture!and!to!compare!your!reactions!with!those!of!other!people!
who!are!here!from!different!countries.!These!observations!can!result!in!increased!
understanding!of!yourself!and!of!the!various!factors!that!have!made!you!the!kind!of!person!
that!you!are.!
!         Furthermore,!if!you!are!able!to!keep!the!perspective!of!a!person!who!is!observing!
himself!or!herself!while!undergoing!an!unusual!experience,!you!will!be!able!to!help!prevent!
yourself!from!becoming!extremely!anxious!or!depressed.!You!will!learn!more!from!the!
intercultural!experience!you!are!having.!
!         Many!factors!influence!the!way!different!people!adjust!to!a!new!culture.!One!of!these!
factors!is,!of!course,!the!individual’s!personality—degree!of!self"confidence,!sense!of!humor,!
ability!to!interact!with!other!people,!ability!to!tolerate!ambiguous!situations!or!frustrating!
situations,!and!so!on.!Other!factors!influencing!people’s!adjustments!to!a!new!culture!are!the!
nature!and!quality!of!the!differences!between!their!own!culture!and!the!new!one;!the!
comparative!status!of!their!own!country!and!the!new!one;!the!nature!of!the!person’s!past!
experience!in!foreign!cultures;!and!the!nature!of!the!particular!setting!in!which!the!newcomer!
to!a!culture!is!situated.! !
!         Social!scientists!who!have!studied!the!phenomenon!of!adjusting!to!a!new!culture!have!
identified!four!phases!of!adjustment!through!which!newcomers!to!a!culture!commonly!pass.!
As!summarized!but!the!social!scientist!Marjorie!Klein,!those!phases!are!as!follows:!
!
!         Spectator!Phase:!The!new!person!is!excited!and!optimistic.!
!         Stress!and!Adaptation:!Problems,!disappointments,!and!internal!conflicts!emerge.!
          Coming"to"Terms:!Increasing!involvement!with!the!host!society!reduces!the!
          foreigner’s!generalized!hostility!and!disappointment,!and!helps!him!or!her!find!a!
          relatively!comfortable,!or!at!least!acceptable,!position!in!society.! !
          Decision!to!return!home:!This!is!a!period!of!excitement!and!self"examination.!If!the!
          foreigner!has!become!detached!from!his!or!her!own!society,!this!phase!brings!about!
          tension!and!feelings!of!ambivalence.!If!the!foreigner!still!identifies!strongly!with!his!or!
          her!home!country,!this!phase!brings!a!feeling!of!release!and!pleasant!anxiety.!
          !
!         This!is!only!one!way!of!looking!at!the!“phases!of!adjustment.”!Not!everyone!goes!
through!all!of!these!phases,!and!different!people!spend!different!amounts!of!time!in!those!
through!which!they!do!pass.!It!can!be!interesting!for!you!to!see!whether!you!yourself!will!go!or!
have!gone!through!phases!like!these.! !
!



                                                                                            13
  V.     Thinking!about!Going!Home!
!
!        When!you!first!arrive!in!a!new!country,!it!is!natural!to!spend!much!of!your!time!
thinking!about!the!new!country!and!your!reactions!to!it.!It!is!helpful!to!try!to!keep!in!mind!that!
even!though!you!are!preoccupied!with!thoughts!about!your!new!setting,!you!will!eventually!be!
going!back!to!your!own!country!after!a!certain!period!of!time.!Remember!that!you!will!change!
while!you!are!in!the!new!country.!You!will!learn!new!ideas,!adopt!new!attitudes,!and!begin!to!
behave!in!new!ways.!This!may!happen!so!gradually!that!you!are!not!aware!of!it.!Be!aware!that!
while!you!are!changing,!things!will!be!changing!at!home!also.!Your!family!members,!friends,!
and!professional!colleagues!will!have!experiences!that!you!do!not!know!about,!and!they!too!
will!develop!new!ideas,!attitudes,!and!ways!of!behaving.!Social,!political,!and!economic!
situations!may!change!as!well.!This!means!that!when!you!go!back!home,!things!will!not!be!as!
you!remember!them.! ! You!will!have!to!adjust!again,!this!time,!to!your!own!culture.!This!
readjustment!is!easier!if!you!realize!it!is!going!to!be!necessary.! ! You!can!prepare!yourself!for!it,!
try!to!keep!your!expectations!realistic,!and!try!not!to!pass!judgment!on!the!people!and!
situations!you!encounter!after!you!go!home.! !
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                                                                                            14
                                     Chapter Three
                      Education and Student Life
!
I.       Keys!to!Academic!Success!
    !
!         The!U.S.!American!academic!system!differs!from!all!others!in!the!world.!To!succeed!in!
it,!you!will!need!to!learn!how!it!is!organized!and!works.!You!will!need!to!learn,!as!the!U.S.!
Americans!say,!“how!to!play!the!game.”!Listed!below!are!some!suggestions!that!you!should!
keep!in!mind!as!you!begin!your!studies.!(Some!of!these!suggestions!as!well!as!the!ideas!about!
study!skills,!which!appear!later!in!this!chapter,!were!contributed!by!Edward!English!of!the!
University!of!Iowa!Counseling!Service.)!You!will!learn!more!about!the!informal!rules!for!
academic!success!as!you!take!courses!and!have!the!opportunity!to!talk!with!experienced!
students!in!your!field!of!study.!The!more!you!discuss!topics!such!as!these!with!experienced!
students,!the!sooner!you!will!be!able!to!develop!a!helpful!understanding!of!the!way!in!which!
your!academic!department!functions.!
              a. Evaluate!Your!Expectations!
!         ! ! Keep!in!mind!that!a!period!of!adjustment!to!a!new!educational!system!is!necessary!
before!you!will!be!able!to!perform!to!the!best!of!your!ability.!In!general,!international!students!
earn!lower!grades!during!their!first!semester!in!this!country.!Then,!as!they!become!accustomed!
to!the!system!and!their!English!improves,!their!grades!improve!as!well.!International!students!
generally!cannot!expect!to!do!outstanding!academic!work!during!their!first!semester!here.!
              b. Select!Your!Courses!Wisely!
!             Especially!during!your!first!semester,!do!not!take!more!courses!than!you!must.!Make!
sure!you!have!a!combination!of!more!demanding!and!less!demanding!courses,!rather!than!only!
“difficult”!ones!which!require!unusually!heavy!amounts!of!work.!When!arranging!your!course!
schedule,!consult!not!only!with!your!academic!advisor!but!also!with!experienced!students!who!
are!familiar!with!available!courses!and!teachers.!You!may!be!tempted!to!take!more!courses!
than!necessary!in!order!to!complete!your!degree!faster.!The!usual!result!of!taking!too!many!
courses!is!discouragement!and!a!poor!academic!performance.!
              c. Work!Hard!from!the!Beginning!
!             It!is!not!possible,!in!the!U.S.!American!system!of!higher!education,!to!wait!until!the!
latter!part!of!the!semester!to!begin!studying.!If!you!do!not!begin!studying!on!the!first!day!of!
classes,!you!are!likely!to!get!behind!and!to!experience!academic!difficulty.!
              d. Know!How!to!Study!
!             The!study!habits!that!were!appropriate!for!the!educational!system!in!your!country!
may!not!be!appropriate!here.!You!may!have!to!learn!to!approach!your!studies!in!a!different!
way!while!you!are!studying!at!a!U.S.!institution.!This!chapter!of!the!Handbook!offers!some!
suggestions!on!“study!skills”!that!can!be!helpful!here.!
              e. Talk!With!Your!Teachers!
!             Teachers!here!expect!students!to!ask!questions!in!class!or!immediately!following!the!
class.!They!expect!students!to!go!see!them!in!their!offices!when!problems!begin.!If!you!are!not!


                                                                                           15
doing!well!in!a!class!and!you!do!not!go!see!the!teacher!to!discuss!the!situation,!the!teacher!is!
likely!to!assume!that!you!are!not!really!interested!in!his!or!her!class.!In!other!words,!most!
teachers!will!have!a!negative!or!at!best!indifferent!evaluation!of!a!student!who!never!raises!
questions!in!the!class,!or!who!does!not!visit!the!teacher!outside!of!class!to!discuss!academic!
difficulties!he!or!she!is!experiencing.!
              f. Ask!Questions!
!         Any!time!you!feel!unsure!of!what!is!expected!of!you!in!class,!or!of!some!aspect!of!the!
material!being!presented,!ask!the!teacher!and/or!some!of!your!fellow!students!about!it.!If!you!
do!not!ask,!it!will!be!assumed!that!you!do!not!understand!everything!or!that!you!are!not!
interested.!
              g. Open!Your!Mind!to!the!Values!of!the!System!
!         From!your!past!experience!in!other!educational!systems,!you!have!developed!certain!
assumptions!about!the!nature!and!purpose!of!education,!and!about!the!way!your!field!of!
interest!should!be!studied.!For!example,!you!may!have!been!taught!to!view!education!as!a!
process!of!absorbing!information!and!ideas!from!scholars!who!know!a!great!deal!about!a!body!
of!knowledge!that!somehow!“exists”!in!the!world.!In!the!U.S.!educational!system,!by!contrast,!
you!will!find!that!education!is!viewed!more!as!an!effort!to!acquire!more!information!about!and!
a!greater!understanding!of!things!that!are!not!yet!known!or!understood!by!anyone.! !
!         You!may!have!been!taught!that!it!is!important!to!be!able!to!memorize!large!quantities!
of!information!that!are!provided!by!professors,!authors,!or!other!experts.!Here,!by!contrast,!
you!may!find!that!being!able!to!memorize!material!is!less!important!than!being!able!to!
synthesize!(that!is,!bring!together!and!mix!in!a!new!way)!material!from!many!sources,!
developing!your!own!ideas!and!viewpoints.!(U.S.!faculty!members!tend!to!agree!that!learning!
how!to!approach!studies!independently!and!to!develop!one’s!own!approaches!and!ideas!is!the!
most!difficult!task!facing!new!foreign!students,!especially!at!the!graduate!level.)!
!         It!is!important!for!you!to!realize!that!differences!of!this!kind!exist!between!the!U.S.!
and!other!education!systems,!and!that!you!will!have!to!adjust!your!thinking!if!you!are!going!to!
succeed!academically.!Whether!or!not!you!personally!accept!the!values!of!the!education!
system!here,!you!will!have!to!act!in!accordance!with!them!while!you!are!here.! !
!
II.       Understanding!the!Academic!System!
   !
           a. Goals!of!the!Academic!System!
                     i. Broad!education.!The!U.S.!American!academic!system,!as!a!whole,!is!
intended!to!provide!a!broad!education!for!as!many!people!as!possible.!There!is!no!screening!
examination!which!directs!a!student!at!an!early!age,!into!an!academic!or!non"academic!area.!A!
high!proportion!of!the!population!completes!secondary!school—and!secondary!school!is!not!
as!challenging!as!it!is!in!countries!where!access!to!education!is!more!limited.!A!high!proportion!
of!the!population!attempts!some!kind!of!post"secondary!education—and!post"secondary!
education!study,!at!the!undergraduate!level,!is!again!not!as!challenging!as!it!is!in!some!other!
systems.!You!may!be!disconcerted!to!find!that!U.S.!Americans!who!have!completed!many!years!
of!formal!education!do!not!seems!as!well!educated!as!people!at!home!who!have!had!a!
comparable!amount!of!education.!



                                                                                        16
                     ii. Specialization.!The!U.S.!American!educational!system!also!produces!
specialists,!people!who!have!studied!a!limited!range!of!topics!in!depth.!Specialization!comes!
later!in!the!U.S.!system!than!it!does!in!most!others.!It!is!not!until!the!third!(“junior”)!year!of!
undergraduate!work!that!a!student!concentrates!on!the!study!of!his/her!own!“major”!field.!
There!is!further!specialization!in!graduate!work,!especially!as!students!undertake!research!for!a!
thesis.!
                    iii. Evaluation.!It!is!considered!important!here!to!evaluate!the!work!that!
students!do.!Therefore,!there!is!a!“grading!system”!(see!next!page)!which!is!used!to!rank!and!
compare!students!academic!work.!A!student’s!grades!receive!considerable!attention!in!
competition.! !
!
           b. Organization!of!the!Academic!System!
!             This!discussion!is!limited!to!higher!(post"secondary)!education.!
                         i. The!semester!system.!The!academic!year!at!the!University!is!comprised!
of!two!semesters!of!approximately!16!weeks!in!length.!In!addition,!there!are!three!summer!
sessions,!one!for!12!weeks,!and!two!sessions!of!six!weeks!each.!
                        ii. Credits.!The!quantity!of!academic!work!a!student!does!at!the!University!
is!measured!in!“credits.”!The!number!of!credits!a!course!is!worth!usually!depends!on!the!
number!of!hours!per!week!that!it!meets.!A!“three!credit!course,”!for!example,!will!meet!three!
hours!weekly!for!one!semester.!It!might!meet!for!three!fifty"minute!sessions,!as!undergraduate!
classes!normally!do,!or!for!one!three"hour!session,!the!more!common!pattern!in!graduate!
classes.!At!the!end!of!the!semester,!the!student!who!has!achieved!a!passing!grade!in!the!
course!has!earned!“three!credits”!or!“three!credit!hours.”!
!         !          The!student!must!earn!a!specified!number!of!credits!in!order!to!graduate.!
This!number!varies!for!undergraduates!and!graduates,!and!it!varies!among!departments!of!the!
University.!Information!about!graduation!requirements!can!be!found!in!the!University’s!catalog.!
The!catalog!lists!all!University!course!offerings!and!requirements.!(You!can!see!one!in!your!
department’s!office,!or!you!can!obtain!a!copy!at!the!Admissions!Office!in!Building!18.)!
                       iii. The!grading!system.!The!quality!of!a!student’s!academic!work!is!
measured!by!means!of!“grades.”!There!are!four!“passing”!grades,!A,!B,!C,!and!D.!There!is!one!
“failing”!grade,!F.!(At!the!graduate!level,!only!A!and!B!are!considered!passing!grades.)!
    ! Each!grade!carries!a!designated!number!of!“points”!per!credit,!as!follows:!
!         Grade! !             Definition!       !        Grade!Points!per!Semester!Hour!
!         ! ! An! !            Outstanding!      !        !       !        4.0!
!         ! ! A"! !            !        !        !        !       !        3.7!
!         ! ! B+! !            Above!Average! !           !       !        3.3!
!         ! ! B!     !         !        !        !        !       !        3.0!
!         ! ! B"! !            !        !        !        !       !        2.7!
!         ! ! C+! !            Average!!         !        !       !        2.3!
!         ! ! C!     !         !        !        !        !       !        2.0!
!         ! ! C"! !            !        !        !        !       !        1.7!
!         ! ! D+! !            Below!Average! !           !       !        1.3!
!         ! ! D!     !         !        !        !        !       !        1.0!
!         ! ! F!     !         Failure! !        !        !       !        0.0!


                                                                                         17
!         !       !
!         !       A!student’s!“grade!point!average”!(or!GPA)!is!calculated!by!dividing!the!
number!of!credits!earned!into!the!number!of!grade!points!earned.!For!example,!if!a!student!
has!taken!three!courses,!each!for!three!hours!of!credit,!and!the!grades!include!one!A,!one!B,!
and!one!C,!the!GPA!would!be!3.00.!The!calculation!is!like!this:!
!         Grade! !         Credits! !        Points! !         Total!Points!
!         A!      !        3!       X!       4! !     !        12!
!         B!      !        3!       X!       3!       !        9!       !       27÷9!=!3.00GPA!
!         C!      !        3! !     X!       2!       !        6! !
!         !       !        9!       !        !        !        27!
!         !       The!“cumulative!GPA”!is!the!GPA!a!student!has!earned!for!all!studies!
undertaken!at!the!University.!
!         !       Each!teacher!at!the!University!has!his!or!her!own!philosophy!and!methods!of!
grading,!Some!use!fixed!grading!scales,!whereby!each!assignment!or!examination!that!is!
graded!can!receive!a!fixed!maximum!of!points!(e.g.,!10!or!100),!and!the!number!of!points!
accumulated!a!the!end!of!the!semester!is!converted!unto!a!letter!grade!(e.g.,!450"500!points!is!
an!A).!An!alternative!to!this!method!is!that!of!“grading!on!the!curve,”!whereby!a!formula!is!
used!to!assure!that!there!will!be!a!certain!number!of!A’s,!a!certain!number!of!B’s,!and!so!on.!
Under!this!system,!the!students!in!the!class!are!competing!with!each!other!for!high!grades.!You!
will!notice!the!absence!of!cooperation!among!students!in!these!classes.!It!is!helpful!to!learn!
about!the!philosophy!and!method!of!grading!that!each!of!your!teachers!uses.!
                    iv. Graduation!requirements.!Graduation!requirements!specify!the!
number!of!credits!you!must!earn,!the!minimum!GPA!you!must!achieve,!and!the!distribution!of!
credits!you!must!have!form!among!different!departments!or!fields!of!study.!In!addition,!it!is!
necessary!to!“apply!for!graduation”!well!in!advance!of!the!term!that!you!will!be!completing!
your!graduation!requirements.!Since!graduation!requirements!vary!among!various!divisions!of!
the!University,!you!should!consult!the!catalog!and!your!current!Schedule!of!Courses!for!
information.!Questions!can!be!addresses!to!your!departmental!office!or!to!your!academic!
advisor.!
                     v. Academic!Advisor.!Your!academic!advisor!is!a!faculty!member!who!
helps!you!to!plan!your!program!of!studies!in!a!way!that!will!best!enable!you!to!fulfill!your!
graduation!requirements!and!at!the!same!time!tailor!your!studies!to!your!interests.!
!         !       Undergraduate!students!do!not!work!especially!closely!with!an!advisor,!even!
though!the!advisor!must!sign!forms!for!registration!and!changes!in!registration.!Graduate!
students,!on!the!other!hand,!work!very!closely!with!their!academic!advisor.!The!advisor!is!
ordinarily!the!chairperson!of!the!student’s!examining!committee.!He!or!she!helps!the!student!
assess!his/her!interests!and!choose!courses!which!will!develop!them.!The!graduate!student!is!
likely!to!spend!many!hours!in!the!office!or!laboratory!with!his/her!advisor.!You!will!notice!that!
relations!between!students!and!their!advisors!are!less!formal!than!they!are!in!many!other!
countries.!
!         !       !
           c. Methods!of!the!Academic!System!
                    i. Lectures.!The!most!common!method!of!instruction!here!is!the!classroom!
lecture.!The!lectures!are!supplemented!by!classroom!discussion!by!reading!assignments!in!


                                                                                        18
textbooks!or!library!books,!and!perhaps!by!periodic!written!assignments.! !
!         !              It!is!important!for!the!student!to!contribute!to!the!discussion!in!the!
classroom.!In!some!countries!it!is!“disrespectful”!for!the!student!to!question!the!teacher.!In!
this!country,!by!contrast!questioning!or!challenging!the!teacher!is!viewed!as!a!healthy!sign!of!
interest,!attention,!and!independent!thinking.!In!many!classes,!your!grade!will!be!determined!
in!part!by!your!contribution!to!class!discussion.!If!you!sit!in!“respectful”!silence,!it!is!likely!to!be!
assumed!that!you!are!not!interested!in!what!is!being!said!in!the!class,!or!that!you!do!not!
understand!any!of!it.! !
!         !              When!the!class!is!too!large!to!permit!questions!and!discussion,!or!if!for!
some!other!reason!you!do!not!have!the!opportunity!to!raise!questions!in!class,!you!can!visit!
privately!with!the!teacher!during!his!or!her!office!hours!or!make!an!appointment!to!see!him!or!
her!in!the!office.!Teachers!usually!announce!their!office!hours!at!the!first!meeting!of!class.!
                     ii. Seminars.!The!seminar!is!a!small!class,!typical!at!the!graduate!level.!It!is!
likely!to!be!devoted!entirely!to!discussion.!Students!are!often!required!to!prepare!
presentations!for!the!seminar,!based!on!their!independent!reading!or!research.!
                    iii. Laboratories.!Many!courses!require!work!in!the!laboratory,!where!the!
theory!in!a!classroom!is!applied!to!practical!problems.!
                    iv. Term!papers.!In!many!courses!you!will!be!required!to!write!a!“term!
paper”!(often!called!simply!a!“paper”).!A!term!paper!is!based!on!study!or!research!you!have!
done!in!the!library!or!laboratory.!You!teacher!will!usually!assign!a!term!paper!in!the!early!part!
of!the!course.!You!are!expected!to!work!on!it!during!the!semester!and!submit!it!near!the!end.!
The!grade!you!receive!on!the!term!paper!may!constitute!a!significant!portion!of!your!grade!for!
the!course.!It!is!wise!to!complete!term!papers!in!advance!of!their!due!date!do!there!is!time!to!
ask!another!person!to!review!your!paper!and!suggest!revisions.!
!                        ! There!are!books!available!in!bookstores!which!explain!the!format!of!a!
term!paper,!including!the!use!of!footnotes!and!bibliographies.!If!you!have!any!questions!about!
a!particular!term!paper!assignment,!you!should!discuss!them!with!the!professor.!
                     v. Examinations.!You!will!have!many!examinations.!Nearly!every!class!has!a!
“final!examination”!at!the!end!of!the!semester.!Most!have!a!“mid"term!examination”!near!the!
middle!of!the!semester.!There!may!be!additional!“tests”!or!“quizzes”!given!with!greater!
frequency,!perhaps!even!weekly.!All!these!tests!are!designed!to!assure!that!students!are!doing!
the!work!that!is!assigned!to!them,!and!to!measure!how!much!they!are!learning.!There!are!two!
general!types!of!tests:!
                        1. Objective!examinations.!An!objective!examination!tests!the!student’s!
          knowledge!or!particular!facts.!International!students!often!have!great!difficulty!with!
          objective!examinations,!not!because!they!do!not!know!the!material!on!which!the!test!
          is!based,!but!because!they!are!unfamiliar!with!the!format!of!the!test!and!because!
          their!knowledge!of!English!is!not!sophisticated!enough!to!enable!them!to!distinguish!
          subtle!differences!in!meaning.!There!are!five!different!kind!of!questions!commonly!
          found!on!objective!examinations.!You!will!want!to!learn!to!deal!with!each!of!them:!
                                 a. Multiple!choices.!The!student!must!choose!from!among!a!
                                     series!of!answers,!selecting!the!one!(or!more)!that!is!most!
                                     appropriate.! !
                                      !


                                                                                               19
                              b. True!and!False.!The!student!must!read!a!statement!and!
                                   indicate!whether!it!is!true!or!false.!
                              c. Matching.!The!student!must!match!words,!phrases!or!
                                   statements!from!two!columns.!
                              d. Identification.!The!student!must!identify!and!briefly!explain!
                                   the!significance!of!a!name,!term,!or!phrase.!
                              e. Blanks.!The!student!must!fill!in!the!blanks!left!in!a!phrase!or!
                                   statement!in!order!to!make!it!complete!and!correct.!
                     2. Subjective!examinations.!Sometimes!called!“essay!questions,”!
         subjunctive!examinations!require!the!student!to!write!an!essay!in!response!to!a!
         question!or!statement.!This!kind!of!examination!tests!a!student’s!ability!to!organize!
         and!relate!his/her!knowledge!of!a!particular!subject.!
         !
         !                      You!should!not!look!at!other!student’s!papers!during!an!
         examination.!To!“cheat”!on!an!examination!by!getting!answers!from!other!students!or!
         from!materials!illicitly!brought!to!the!test!can!result!in!a!“zero”!grade!for!the!
         examination!and!in!disciplinary!action.!(See!the!section!on!“academic!honesty,”!in!Part!
         E)!
         !
             d. Study!Skills.!
             !    Different!academic!systems!reward!different!kinds!of!mental!activity.!For!
example,!you!may!come!from!an!academic!system!where!the!successful!student!was!the!one!
who!could!memorize!the!largest!quantity!of!material,!or!the!one!who!could!master,!in!greatest!
depth,!the!work!of!one!particular!scholar!or!philosopher.!Thus!you!may!be!skilled!in!
memorizing!or!in!thoroughly!analyzing!particular!books.!Since!the!U.S.!academic!system!differs!
from!the!one!to!which!you!are!accustomed,!the!mental!skills!the!brought!you!academic!
success!at!home!might!not!be!as!useful!here,!and!you!will!probably!have!to!learn!different!
skills!in!order!to!succeed!here.!
              !     In!general,!the!U.S.!educational!system!rewards!students!who!can!study!a!
large!amount!of!material!concerning!a!broad!range!of!subjects,!who!can!synthesize!(that!is,!
combine!into!a!meaningful!whole!material!from!many!sources),!and!who!can!take!
examinations!effectively.!These!activities!require!skills!that!can!be!learned.!Some!of!these!skills!
are!mentioned!and!briefly!discussed!here.!For!additional!ideas!or!assistance!with!“study!skills,”!
you!can!go!to!the!University!Counseling!Center!and!say!that!you!are!interested!in!help!with!
study!skills.! !
                       i. Organizing!your!time.!You!will!have!a!large!amount!of!work!to!do!and!a!
           limited!amount!of!time!in!which!to!do!it.!In!that!situation,!you!need!to!use!your!time!
           effectively.!A!good!way!to!use!your!time!effectively!is!to!make!yourself!a!schedule.!You!
           can!start!with!a!schedule!covering!one!week’s!time.!Indicate!the!time!periods!devoted!
           to!sleeping,!eating,!personal!activities,!and!attending!classes.!That!will!leave!time!that!
           could!be!used!for!studying.!
                      ii. Reading!effectively.!When!you!see!the!length!of!the!reading!lists!your!
           instructors!give!you,!you!will!realize!that!it!is!not!possible!to!memorize!all!of!your!
           reading!materials!for!the!semester,!or!even!to!study!them!in!reasonable!depth.!That!is!


                                                                                            20
        not!what!you!are!expected!to!do.!In!general,!you!are!expected!to!familiarize!yourself!
        with!the!main!points!from!each!reading!and!often!be!able!to!relate!what!one!writer!
        has!said!to!what!another!writer!has!said.!To!draw!the!main!points!form!a!large!
        number!of!readings,!here!are!some!things!you!can!do:!
                        1. Skim.!“Skimming”!means!looking!over!a!reading!quickly,!paying!
                            attention!to!the!table!of!contents!if!it!is!entire!book,!the!titles!of!the!
                            chapters,!the!heading!of!the!various!sections!of!the!chapters,!the!
                            “topic!sentences”!that!begin!most!paragraphs,!and!the!summary!
                            paragraphs!or!sections.! !
                        2. Read.!Go!over!the!material!again,!this!time!more!carefully,!looking!
                            for!the!main!points,!the!conclusions,!the!contentions.!Write!down!
                            notes!about!the!main!points,!following!the!outline!of!the!reading!
                            itself.!
                        3. Question.!Rather!than!passively!accepting!what!the!writer!has!
                            written,!ask!yourself!questions!about!it.!“Why!is!the!writer!saying!
                            this?”!you!might!ask.!“What!is!the!evidence!for!that?”!“Does!that!
                            agree!with!what!this!same!writer!said!earlier,!or!with!what!another!
                            writer!on!the!same!subject!said?”!
                        4. Review.!Skim!it!again.!Look!at!your!notes!again.!Try!to!retain!in!your!
                            mind!the!main!points!of!the!readings.!
                  iii. Deriving!as!much!as!possible!from!classes.!Since!attendance!at!and!
        participation!in!classes!is!such!an!important!part!of!the!academic!system!here,!it!is!
        prudent!to!try!to!gain!as!much!from!your!classes!as!you!can.!
!
Here!are!some!suggestions!that!will!help!you!do!that:!
                      1. Read!in!advance.!If!you!have!reading!assignments!that!relate!to!a!
                         lecture!you!will!hear!in!a!class,!do!the!reading!before!class,!so!you!
                         will!understand!the!lecture!better.!From!the!reading!you!might!have!
                         questions!to!ask!in!the!class.!
                      2. Take!notes.!Write!down!the!main!points!that!the!lecturer!makes.!
                         Many!lecturers!will!use!phrases!that!will!help!you!identify!the!
                         points!they!think!are!important!and!that!you!should!therefore!note.!
                         Examples!of!such!phrases!are!“There!are!three!major!reasons!for!
                         this.!The!first!is...,”!“The!next!major!development!was...,”!and!“”The!
                         main!thing!to!keep!in!mind!about!this!is...”!
                      3. Review.!After!the!class,!go!over!your!notes.!Fill!in!things!you!left!out.!
                         Mark!things!you!still!have!questions!about.!
                      4. Get!help!if!you!need!it.!If!you!have!specific!questions!or!if!you!are!
                         having!general!difficulty!understanding!what!is!happening!in!a!class,!
                         get!help.!Talk!to!teachers.!Try!to!find!another!student!in!the!class!
                         who!seems!to!understand!better!and!who!is!willing!to!answer!your!
                         questions.! ! If!you!are!having!serious!difficulties,!consider!going!to!
                         the!office!of!the!appropriate!academic!department!to!see!if!they!
                         can!help!you!identify!a!“tutor,”!that!is,!a!person!you!can!hire!to!


                                                                                             21
                  work!with!you!privately!on!the!material!that!is!being!covered!in!the!
                  class.!
               5. Try!not!to!be!discouraged.!International!students,!especially!new!
                  ones,!will!inevitably!have!some!difficulties!understanding!what!is!
                  happening!in!at!least!some!of!their!classes.!Many!things!contribute!
                  to!this:!the!teacher!talks!to!fast,!and/or!does!not!give!
                  well"organized!presentations;!fellow!students’!comments!are!
                  incomprehensible!because!they!use!so!much!slang;!the!entire!
                  setting!seems!strange!and!confusing.!As!time!passes!and!you!have!
                  more!experience,!these!difficulties!will!diminish.!
               6. Coping!with!quizzes!and!examinations.!Here!are!some!suggestions!
                  that!can!help!you!cope!with!the!many!quizzes!and!examinations!you!
                  will!have!at!the!University:!
                      a. Keep!up"to"date!with!your!studies.!If!you!fall!behind!on!
                            your!readings!or!assignments,!you!will!have!difficulty!
                            preparing!adequately!for!tests.! !
                      b. Schedule!time!to!review.!Before!the!test,!go!over!your!notes!
                            form!lectures!and!readings.!Try!to!anticipate!what!the!
                            instructor!will!ask!on!the!test!by!recalling!the!points!that!
                            were!emphasized!during!lectures.!
                      c. Rest!before!the!test.!Most!people!perform!better!on!tests!if!
                            they!have!had!adequate!sleep!the!night!before.!
                      d. Read!test!instructions!carefully.!Notice!how!much!time!you!
                            have,!what!choices!you!have!among!questions,!and!which!
                            questions!count!more!than!others.!Notice!whether!you!are!
                            allowed!to!use!scratch!paper,!calculators,!or!dictionaries.!
                            Follow!instructions!carefully.!
                      e. Schedule!your!time.!Decide!how!much!time!you!can!afford!
                            to!spend!on!each!question.!Avoid!spending!all!your!time!on!
                            only!one!or!a!few!of!the!questions.!(Some!instructors!will!
                            allow!international!students!additional!time!to!complete!
                            examinations,!it!is!appears!that!a!language!problem!rather!
                            than!a!lack!of!knowledge!of!the!subject!matter!is!the!factor!
                            that!prevents!the!student!form!completing!the!examination!
                            in!the!allotted!time.)!Some!instructors!will!not!allow!
                            international!students!extra!time.!If!you!have!a!language!
                            problem!that!is!keeping!you!from!“showing!what!you!know”!
                            on!a!test,!you!can!ask!the!instructor!for!additional!time.!
                          !
    e. Academic!Honesty!
!        Many!students!in!the!U.S.!get!into!trouble!for!what!is!called!“cheating”!or!
“plagiarism.”!Cheating!means!getting!the!type!of!help!a!student!is!not!supposed!to!get!
on!an!assignment,!quiz,!or!examination.!“Plagiarism”!refers!specifically!to!the!practice!
of!copying!from!a!book!or!other!publication!and!not!acknowledging!that!the!words!or!


                                                                               22
           ideas!used!are!someone!else’s,!and!not!the!student’s.!
                        i. What!is!cheating?!In!general,!students!in!the!U.S.!academic!system!are!
           expected!to!do!their!own!academic!work!without!getting!excessive!assistance!from!
           other!people.!This!does!not!mean!that!you!cannot!ask!other!students!to!help!with!
           class!work.!It!is!permissible!and!sometimes!even!advisable!to!seek!help!in!
           understanding!what!is!happening!in!a!class!and!what!a!specific!assignment!is!about.!It!
           is!not!considered!proper,!though,!to!have!someone!else!do!an!assignment!for!you,!or!
           to!copy!answers!or!information!from!a!publication!in!a!way!that!makes!it!appear!that!
           the!answers!are!ones!you!devised!and!composed!yourself.!That!would!be!considered!
           cheating.!Here!are!some!other!things!that!are!considered!cheating:!
                               1. Copying!other!student’s!assignments!
                               2. Copying!other!students!answers!to!examination!questions!
                               3. Taking!notes!or!books!to!an!examinations!and!secretly!referring!
                                   to!them!for!assistance!in!answering!examinations!questions.!
                       ii. Possible!consequences!of!cheating.!Some!students!cheat!and!are!not!
           punished!for!it,!either!because!the!cheating!is!not!detected!or!because!the!faculty!
           member!in!whose!class!the!cheating!takes!place!prefers!not!to!take!any!action!against!
           the!student!who!has!cheated.!In!most!cases,!though,!cheating!is!detected!and!has!
           negative!consequences!for!the!student!who!does!it.!These!consequences!might!be!a!
           failing!grade!for!the!assignment!or!examination!on!which!the!cheating!took!place;!a!
           failing!grade!for!the!course!in!which!the!cheating!occurred;!expulsion!from!(being!
           required!to!leave)!the!course;!or!expulsion!from!the!University.!
!          !         !
    III.   Student!Services!
    !
             a. International!Student!Advisor!(ISA)!–!Building!71,!Room!147!
!        This!office!provides!counseling!on!personal,!social,!and!financial!matter;!information!
about!immigration!regulations!and!University!procedures;!liaison!with!sponsoring!agencies!(IIE,!
LASPAU,!USAID,!etc.);!certification!of!student!status;!miscellaneous!problem"solving;!
information!about!vacation!activities!in!the!U.S.!and!employment!opportunities!abroad;!
sponsorship!of!activities!with!international!themes!and!development!of!intercultural!
educational!programs.!To!help!clarify!the!role!of!an!ISA,!an!editorial!on!that!subject!from!the!
March,!1975!issue!of!the!Foreign!Student!Newsletter!is!reprinted!here:!
!
                               THE!FSA:!WHOSE!SIDE!IS!SHE/HE!ON?!
!        It!is!easy!to!understand!why!foreign!students!might!be!confused!about!the!role!and!
responsibilities!of!a!Foreign!Student!Advisor.!Most!have!never!heard!the!term!“foreign!student!
advisor”!until!they!have!contact!with!a!U.S.!educational!institution,!since!FSA’s!exist!in!very!few!
countries!of!the!world.!And!within!the!U.S.!itself,!there!is!a!great!variety!in!the!postures!
assumed!by!different!FSA’s.!At!the!one!extreme!are!those!FSA’s!who!believe!completely!in!the!
absolute!goodness!and!reliability!of!every!foreign!student,!and!who!are!ready!to!do!battle!on!
any!foreign!student’s!behalf,!whatever!the!merits!of!his/her!case.!At!the!other!extreme!are!
those!very!skeptical!FSA’s!who!believe!that!foreign!students!should!be!treated!warily!because!


                                                                                          23
they!are!out!to!abuse!the!system!to!the!maximum!extent!possible!in!order!to!advance!their!
purely!selfish!interests.!
!         Of!course,!the!outlooks!of!most!FSA’s!fall!somewhat!between!these!two!extremes.!But!
these!extremes!do!exist,!so!it!seems!warranted!here!to!outline!the!basic!assumptions!upon!
which!the!University!of!West!Florida!FSA,!(and!probably!most!FSA’s)!bases!his/her!work.!
!         In!general!terms,!the!FSA’s!job!is!to!advance!what!can!be!called!“international!
education”!at!his!or!her!institution.!This!means!assisting!qualified!international!students!to!
derive!the!maximum!possible!benefit!from!their!stays!at!the!University,!while!enduring!the!
minimum!possible!number!of!the!difficulties!which!can!mane!life!uncomfortable!for!any!
foreigner.!It!also!means!assisting!the!university!(faculty,!staff,!and!students)!in!deriving!the!
maximum!possible!benefit!from!the!presence!of!representatives!of!other!countries.! !
!         An!FSA!has!almost!no!power!in!the!sense!of!being!able!to!make!things!start!or!stop.!
An!FSA!can!only!seek!to!influence!students,!faculty,!administrators,!governmental!agencies,!
and!sponsoring!agencies.!An!FSA’s!ability!to!exert!influence!depends!on!the!amount!of!respect!
in!which!he!or!she!is!held,!and!that!in!turn!depends!on!the!judgment!and!integrity!he!or!she!
displays!in!carrying!out!his!or!her!work.!An!FSA’s!effectiveness!will!be!limited,!at!best,!if!he!or!
she!serves!unquestioningly!as!a!supporter!of!the!Immigration!and!Naturalization!Service,!the!
Internal!Revenue!Service,!the!Admissions!Office!or!the!Housing!Office!of!the!University,!the!
international!student!who!has!willfully!let!his/her!permission!to!stay!expire!and!has!knowingly!
accepted!employment!without!permission,!or!any!other!single!agency!or!person.!The!effective!
FSA!must!draw!a!balance!between!the!interests!of!particular!students,!international!students!
as!a!group,!and!the!offices!or!agencies!with!which!international!students!interact.! !
!         Of!course,!the!FSA’s!primary!commitment!is!to!international!students,!whose!advocate!
and!spokesperson!the!FSA!is!intended!to!be.!What!he!or!she!can!do!for!international!students!
is!to!provide!information!about!many,!many!topics;!interpret!institutional!and!governmental!
procedures,!rules!and!regulations!(without!necessarily!agreeing!with!the!moral!foundation!of!
those!rules,!etc.);!plan!and!implement!educational!programs;!try!to!influence!institutional,!
local!and!national!governmental!policy!in!ways!that!will!benefit!students,!and!support!
particular!international!students!who!find!themselves!in!difficulty!due!to!circumstances!
beyond!their!control.!
!         At!the!outset!of!these!comments!we!indicated!that!there!is!among!FSA’s!wide!range!of!
beliefs!about!international!students.!Similarly,!there!is!among!international!students!a!wide!
range!of!beliefs!about!the!FSA’s.!At!the!one!extreme,!there!are!those!international!students!
who!see!the!FSA!as!a!law!enforcement!officer,!working!for!the!Immigration!Service!to!harass!
and!frustrate!non"U.S.!Americans.!At!the!other!extreme!are!those!international!students!who!
believe!the!FSA!should!fight!on!their!behalf!no!matter!how!negligent,!devious,!or!dishonest!
their!own!behavior!has!been.!These!comments!have!been!intended!to!indicate!that!neither!of!
these!extremes!are!valid,!and!the!effective!FSA!is!somewhere!between!the!extremes!trying!to!
draw!a!judicious!balance.!
!
             b. Financial!Aid!–!Building!18,!474"2400!
Most!financial!aid!available!for!international!students!is!in!the!form!of!assistantships!in!their!
departments.!You!should!apply!through!your!departmental!office!if!you!want!an!assistantship.!
It!is!very!rare!for!undergraduates!to!have!assistantships.! !


                                                                                          24
!        The!Financial!Aid!Office!assists!students!who!are!seeking!part"time!employment,!both!
on!campus!and!off"campus.!When!you!seek!such!assistance,!you!should!realize!the!
opportunities!for!part"time!work!are!very!limited!and!you!should!be!sure!you!have!or!can!
obtain!proper!permission!to!work!off"campus.!The!Foreign!Student!Advisor!has!no!information!
on!specific!employment!opportunities!within!the!United!States.!(The!Job!Placement!Office!on!
campus!does!have!a!directory!that!lists!job!opportunities!within!the!U.S.!In!the!back!of!the!
directory!is!a!list!of!companies!that!hire!foreign!nationals.)!You!might!also!get!help!in!locating!
employment!from!faculty!members!in!you!department!(if!you!are!a!graduate!student)!and!
friends!who!have!found!jobs.! !
!        If!you!have!questions!concerning!your!University!bill,!see!a!cashier,!Building!20E.!If!you!
have!questions!concerning!a!scholarship!you!have!been!awarded,!or!funds!that!are!to!be!
credited!to!you!by!your!sponsoring!organization,!see!the!Controller!in!Building!20E.!
!
            c. Counseling!Center!–!Building!19,!474"2420!
!        The!Center!will!help!you!with!personal!problems,!decisions!about!vocations,!and!
study!problems.!If!you!are!having!difficulty!in!studying!effectively!–!in!concentrating,!organizing!
your!time,!or!just!feeling!that!your!studying!does!not!produce!the!results!it!should!–!the!
Counseling!center!may!be!able!to!help!you!improve!your!study!skills.!
!
            d. Career!Center!–!Building!19,!474"2259!
!        Information!about!employers!and!the!kinds!of!employees!they!are!seeking;!assistance!
in!preparation!of!resumes!and!letter!to!prospective!employers!is!available.!Before!seeking!work,!
make!sure!you!have!or!can!obtain!legal!permission.!Check!with!the!FSA!about!Immigration!and!
Naturalization!rules.! !
!
            e. Registration!and!Records!–!Building!18,!474"2249!
!        This!office!handles!changes!in!registration,!name!changes,!grade!reports!and!
transcripts,!and!affixes!the!official!UWF!seal.!
!
            f. Library!–!John!C.!Pace!Building!(32),!474"2414!
!        The!Library!offers!services!to!the!students!on!writing!term!papers,!how!to!do!research!
for!a!paper,!and!how!to!use!the!library.!For!information!call!474"2414.!
!        !          !
   IV. Student!Activities!
   !
            a. Student!Clubs!
!        The!International!Student!Association!(ISA)!meets!on!the!campus!of!the!University!of!
West!Florida!under!the!direction!of!the!Foreign!Student!Advisor.!The!club!sponsors!
international!sales,!dinners,!discussions,!and!parties.!All!international!students!and!U.S.!
American!students!attending!the!University!are!welcome.!
!        The!Asian!Student!Union!(ASU)!also!meets!on!the!campus!of!the!University!of!West!
Florida.!The!club!has!dinners,!parties!and!also!sponsors!one!of!the!most!festive!nights!of!the!
year,!Chinese!New!Year!Celebration.!


                                                                                         25
!        The!Latin!American!Student!Association!(LASA)!seeks!to!share!the!Hispanic!culture!
with!the!University!community.!See!the!FSA!for!the!club’s!contact!person.!
!        International!Friendship!Family!Program!involves!Pensacola!area!families!who!are!
interested!in!spending!some!time!with!students!from!other!countries.!International!students!
who!want!to!become!acquainted!with!a!U.S.!American!family!can!fill!out!a!form!at!the!FSA’s!
office!and!be!put!in!contact!with!a!family.!The!Friendship!Family!Program!enables!international!
students!to!see!an!important!aspect!of!U.S.!American!life,!one!that!they!do!not!see!if!they!
confine!themselves!to!academic!pursuits.!In!some!cases,!it!enables!them!to!establish!close!
relationships!with!U.S.!Americans.!
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                                                                                       26
                                          Chapter Four
                                    Legal Information
!
    I.          Summary!of!your!Legal!Responsibilities!
    !
!        Like!all!other!countries!of!the!world,!the!United!States!has!laws!and!regulations!
governing!foreigners!who!are!temporarily!within!its!boundaries.!These!regulations!may!
sometimes!seem!bewildering.!Below!is!a!summary!of!the!essential!things!you,!as!an!
international!student,!are!responsible!for!doing.!Further!information!about!them!is!contained!
in!subsequent!sections!of!this!chapter.!After!reading!what!the!Handbook!says!about!whatever!
questions!you!have,!you!may!want!to!consult!with!the!Foreign!Student!Advisor.!
    ! Keep!your!passport!valid!for!at!least!six!months!into!the!future.!
    ! Maintain!your!full"time!enrollment!during!the!academic!school!year!(enrollment!in!the!
       summer!session!is!not!required!for!most!students).!
    ! Do!not!accept!off"campus!employment!without!official!permission.!
    ! Report!your!new!address!to!the!FSA!within!10!days,!if!you!move.!
    ! DO!not!take!even!a!brief!trip!outside!the!United!States!until!you!are!certain!that!all!your!
       travel!documents!are!in!order.!
    ! Pay!your!income!tax,!if!you!are!required!to!do!so.!
    ! Give!truthful!answers!to!any!questions!an!Immigration!and!Naturalization!Service!
       officer!might!ask!you!about!your!student!status!or!other!matters.!
         !
         According!to!an!article!in!the!Asian!Student!Orientation!Handbook:!
         !    “...foreign!students!have!the!constitutional!right!to!express!their!views!freely,!to!join!
         together!with!others!in!expression!of!those!views,!and!to!participate!fully!in!the!
         propagation!and!publication!of!ideas,!popular!of!unpopular,!so!as!long!as!those!expressions!
         are!made!in!an!orderly!and!peaceful!manner.!They!have!the!same!rights!to!free!speech!and!
         are!subject!to!the!same!limitations!of!freedom!of!action!as!are!U.S.!American!citizens.”!
         !
         And!
         !
         !     “...!Some!foreign!students!fear!that!if!they!are!convicted!–!or!even!accused!""!of!a!
         violation!of!any!law!they!will!be!deported!immediately!and!automatically.! ! That!is!not!true.!
         In!most!cases,!conviction!of!a!single!misdemeanor!or!minor!offense!will!have!no!effect!on!a!
         student’s!immigration!status.!Conviction!of!a!more!serious!offense!can!result!in!
         deportation.!For!example,!if!a!student!is!convicted!of!petty!theft,!disturbing!the!peace,!
         drunkenness,!or!a!similar!minor!offense,!it!will!not!affect!her/his!immigration!status.!
         He/she!can!be!deported!if!convicted!of!a!crime!involving!moral!turpitude!for!which!he!/she!
         is!sentenced!to!at!least!one!year!in!confinement.!Immigration!law!provides!for!the!possible!
         deportation!of!any!person!who!is!a!“narcotic!addict”!or!who!is!“convicted!of!a!violation!of...!
         any!law!or!regulation!relating!to!the!illicit!possession!of!or!traffic!in!narcotic!drugs!or!
         marijuana.”!


                                                                                              27
    !
  II.    Enforcement!of!Immigration!Laws!
!         Enforcing!U.S.!Immigration!laws!and!regulations!is!the!responsibility!of!the!United!
States!Citizenship!and!Immigration!Service.!The!USCIS,!as!it!is!usually!called,!is!part!of!the!U.S.!
Department!of!Homeland!Security.!Like!most!U.S.!government!agencies,!the!USCIS!has!
headquarters!in!Washington,!D.C.!For!administrative!purposes,!the!USCIS!has!divided!the!U.S.!
into!a!number!of!regions!and!“districts.”!Most!international!students!and!scholars!in!the!U.S.!
deal!with!the!USCIS!district!office!that!has!jurisdiction!over!their!place!of!residence.!The!
address!of!the!USCIS!district!office!that!has!jurisdiction!over!international!students!and!
scholars!at!The!University!of!West!Florida!is”!
                          United!States!Immigration!and!Citizenship!Service!
                                       Federal!Building,!Box!35044!
                                           400!West!Bay!Street!
                                          Jacksonville,!FL!32202!
                                              904"232"2624!
                                                      !
!         It!is!not!the!responsibility!of!the!International!Student!Advisor!to!enforce!immigration!
laws.!The!ISA!is!required!to!notify!the!Immigration!when!a!student!has!failed!to!maintain!his!or!
her!status!or!is!no!longer!attending!the!University.!Otherwise,!the!ISA’s!responsibility!in!this!
area!is!to!assist!students!in!fulfilling!their!legal!obligations!in!such!a!way!that!they!maintain!
there!legal!status.!
!
  III. Basic!Travel!Documents!
           a. Passport!
                  i. What!it!is.!Your!passport!is!your!own!government’s!permit!for!you!to!
                      leave!and!re"enter!your!own!country.!Most!passports!contain!a!date!of!
                      expiration.!In!place!of!a!passport,!some!students!have!a!Certificate!of!
                      Identity!(often!called!a!“CI”),!which!is!roughly!equivalent!to!a!passport.!
                 ii. Extending!your!passport.!Your!own!consulate!or!embassy!in!the!U.S.!
                      must!extend!your!passport.!Consult!with!them!to!learn!what!forms!and!
                      fees,!if!any,!are!required.!If!you!are!required!to!supply!a!letter!affirming!
                      that!you!are!a!student!at!the!University!of!West!Florida,!you!can!request!
                      such!a!letter!from!the!ISA.!
                    !     Your!permission!to!remain!in!the!U.S.!can!never!extend!beyond!the!
                    date!your!passport!expires.!In!the!case!of!some!countries,!the!expiration!
                    date!of!the!passport!must!be!six!months!later!than!the!end!of!the!
                    intended!stay!in!the!U.S.!If!you!are!unsure!where!your!nearest!regional!
                    consulate!is!located,!consult!with!the!ISA!to!learn!where!you!should!write!
                    to!extend!you!passport.!
           b. Visa!
                  i. What!it!is.!The!visa!stamp!put!in!your!passport!by!the!U.S!consul!abroad!
                      was!needed!to!enter!the!United!States.!The!visa!shows!the!latest!date!on!
                      which!you!can!apply!to!enter!this!country.! ! It!does!not!show!how!long!



                                                                                           28
                       you!can!stay!here.!It!also!indicates!the!kind!of!visa!you!have!–!usually!F"1!
                       or!J"1.!When!you!arrive!at!the!“port!of!entry,”!the!U.S.!Immigrations!
                       Inspector!examines!your!passport,!your!visa,!your!Certificate!of!Eligibility!
                       (if!you!have!an!F"1!visa)!and!determines!whether!you!are!admissible!to!
                       the!U.S.!(Citizens!of!Canada!do!not!need!a!passport!or!visa!to!enter!the!
                       U.S.)!
                  ii. Extending!your!visa.!It!is!necessary!to!extend!your!visa!only!if!(1)!you!
                       plan!to!leave!and!re"enter!the!U.S.!after!your!visa!has!expired!and!(2)!
                       when!you!leave,!you!are!going!somewhere!other!than!Canada,!Mexico,!
                       or!any!of!the!islands!in!the!Caribbean!Sea.!
!      !                ! If!it!is!necessary!for!you!to!extend!your!visa,!you!may!do!so!by!
                        visiting!the!U.S.!consul!in!the!country!to!which!you!are!traveling.!It!is!not!
                        possible!to!extend!an!F"1!visa!while!you!are!in!the!U.S.!
           c. Arrival"Departure!Record!(Form!I"94,!or!“Permit!to!Stay”)!
                   i. What!it!is.!Your!I"94!shows!that!you!have!been!lawfully!admitted!to!the!
                       U.S.!Your!I"94!is!usually!stapled!onto!the!U.S.!visa!page!of!your!passport.!
                  ii. Expiration.!All!students!with!F"1!visas!are!admitted!for!the!duration!of!
                       status!(D/S)!which!is!defined!as!(1)!the!time!during!which!you!are!
                       pursuing!a!full!course!of!study!and!making!normal!progress!toward!
                       complete!that!course!plus!(2)!the!time!you!may!be!working!in!authorized!
                       “practical!training”!after!you!complete!studies!(if!you!qualify!and!are!so!
                       authorized)!plus!(3)!60!days!to!depart!the!country.!
                 iii. Extending!your!stay.!If!your!permission!to!stay!is!going!to!expire!and!you!
                       need!to!remain!in!the!U.S.!beyond!its!expiration!in!order!to!continue!
                       your!program,!you!are!responsible!for!extending!your!stay.!No!one!will!
                       remind!you!when!it!is!time!to!apply!for!an!extension.!You!may!apply!two!
                       months!before!your!stay!expires.!For!instructions!concerning!the!
                       procedure,!read!the!information!about!“Extension!of!Stay”!that!is!in!the!
                       Handbook!section!concerning!the!kind!of!visa!you!have.!Consult!the!ISA!
                       if!you!have!questions.!
                     !
  IV. Types!of!Visas!and!Regulations!
    a. F"1!Student!Status!
         i. Qualifications!
             1. The!student!must!be!accepted!for!full"time!study!by!a!U.S.!institution!of!
                learning.!The!school!sends!the!international!student!a!Form!I"20!(Certificate!
                of!Eligibility)!which!is!used!to!obtain!an!F"1!visa!form!a!U.S.!American!Consul.!
             2. The!student!must!pursue!a!full"time!course!of!study.!
             3. The!student!must!be!fluent!enough!in!English!to!pursue!a!full"time!course!of!
                study!(unless!he!or!she!is!admitted!to!study!the!English!language,!or!to!study!
                in!a!language!he!or!she!understands)!
             4. The!student!must!show!proof!of!financial!ability!to!pursue!full"time!study.!
                Having!shown!this!proof,!there!should!not!be!any!need!to!work!during!the!



                                                                                            29
       student’s!first!year!in!the!U.S.!
    5. The!student!must!submit!a!Health!Form,!including!proof!of!immunity!to!
       measles,!mumps!and!rubella.!
ii. Regulations!for!F"1!status!
    1. Full"time!study.!With!few!exceptions,!F"1!students!must!be!full"time!students!
       each!semester!until!they!receive!their!degrees.!“Full"time!Study”!for!
       international!students!at!the!University!means!a!minimum!of!nine!credit!
       hours!for!graduate!students!and!twelve!for!undergraduate!students.!Any!
       deviations!form!this!should!be!discussed!with!the!ISA.!Exceptions!are!possible!
       in!the!case!of!health!problems!or!in!the!case!of!a!student!who!has!completed!
       course!requirements!for!an!advances!degree!and!is!preparing!for!
       comprehensive!examinations!or!working!on!a!dissertation.!See!the!ISA!
       concerning!the!documentation!of!these!circumstances.!F"1!students!are!not!
       required!to!register!for!the!summer!session.! !
    2. Maximum!length!of!stay.!The!“completion!of!studies”!date!in!Item!#5!on!the!
       most!recent!INS!Form!I"20!you!were!issued,!is!the!date!by!which!the!INS!
       expects!you!to!complete!requirements!for!your!current!program.!If!you!are!
       unable!to!complete!your!program!of!study!by!that!date,!consult!the!ISA!at!
       least!30!days!before!reaching!the!I"20!completion!date.!If!you!are!eligible!for!
       an!extension!of!your!time!limit,!the!ISA!will!assist!you!to!comply!with!the!
       extension!requirements.!
    3. Extension!of!stay.!You!may!apply!for!an!extension!of!your!study!program!if:!
              a. You!have!not!yet!exceeded!the!time!limitation!placed!upon!your!
                  study!by!the!expected!completion!of!studies!date!in!Item!#5!on!
                  your!Form!I"20!and!
              b. You!have!continuously!maintained!lawful!F"1!status!and!
              c. The!delay!in!completing!program!requirements!has!been!caused!by!
                  compelling!academic!reason!(such!as!changes!of!major!field!or!
                  research!topics,!or!unexpected!research!problems),!or!compelling!
                  and!documented!medical!reasons.!Delays!in!completing!program!
                  requirements!which!are!caused!by!academic!probation!or!
                  suspension!are!not!acceptable!reasons!of!extension!of!a!program!of!
                  study.!See!the!ISA!to!obtain!a!certification!form!for!an!extension!of!
                  stay.!
                  ! ! ! If!your!completion!of!studies!date!has!expires!or!if!you!do!not!
                  meet!the!eligibility!requirements!to!apply!for!program!extension,!
                  you!may!need!to!apply!for!“reinstatement”!to!lawful!F"1!status.!IN!
                  this!case,!immediate!consultation!with!the!ISA!is!necessary.!
    4. Travel!outside!the!United!States.!Students!wishing!to!travel!outside!the!U.S.!
       should!always!consult!the!ISA!first.!Always!have!your!passport!with!you!when!
       making!inquiries!about!traveling!outside!the!U.S.!
              a. Your!passport!must!be!valid!beyond!the!date!on!which!you!plan!to!
                  re"enter!the!U.S.!
              b. Your!visa!must!be!valid!for!“multiple!entries”!into!the!U.S.,!and!


                                                                              30
              must!be!valid!beyond!the!proposed!re"entry!date.!Exceptions!to!this!
              rule!are!for!short!visits!to!Canada,!Mexico!or!the!Caribbean!Islands.!
              For!such!trips!you!will!need!only!your!passport,!a!current!from!I"94!
              and!an!I"20,!if!you!are!going!for!a!period!of!less!than!30!days.!In!the!
              case!of!trips!to!other!countries,!if!the!visa!is!valid!for!only!one!entry,!
              or!has!expired,!a!new!visa!can!be!obtained!from!the!U.S.!American!
              Consul!in!the!country!you!are!visiting!by!presenting!the!properly!
              endorsed!Form!I"20.!You!should!allow!sufficient!time!to!obtain!a!
              new!visa!and!should!be!prepared!to!present!documents!verifying!
              the!adequacy!of!your!financial!support.!
          c. All!students!in!F"1!status!must!obtain!the!ISA’s!signature!on!page!
              four!of!his/her!current!I"20!form!in!order!to!re"enter!the!U.S.!Please!
              give!the!ISA!advance!notice.!Reentry!and!an!extension!of!stay!can!
              be!granted!simultaneously!upon!re"entry!to!the!U.S.,!if!appropriate.!
5. Transfer!of!Schools.!An!F"1!student!is!not!required!to!obtain!INS!permission!
   before!transferring!from!one!U.S.!educational!institution!to!another.!A!simple!
   notification!procedure!is!done!by!the!international!student!advisors!of!the!
   two!schools!involved.!The!student!must!present!his!or!her!new!I"20,!old!I"20!
   and!passport!to!the!ISA!at!the!new!school!within!15!days!of!the!first!day!of!
   classes!to!process!the!transfer.!
6. Employment.!Employment!opportunities!for!international!students!in!the!U.S.!
   are!restricted!by!law!and!regulations.!These!laws!and!regulations!are!
   intended!to!protect!job!opportunities!in!the!U.S.!for!U.S.!citizens!and!
   permanent!residents,!by!minimizing!the!number!of!international!students!
   who!are!taking!jobs!that!might!otherwise!be!filled!by!U.S.!Americans.!
          a. General!regulations.!No!permission!is!required!when!a!full"time!
              students!is!doing!paid!work!as!part!of!the!terms!of!a!scholarship,!
              fellowship,!or!assistantship,!since!such!work!is!considered!to!be!part!
              of!the!student’s!academic!program.!However,!the!work!cannot!
              qualify!as!part!of!the!student’s!registration!for!full"time!study.!
          b. On"campus!employment.!An!F"1!student!may!work!for!the!
              University!without!having!to!obtain!permission!from!anyone.!If!you!
              are!in!F"1!status,!you!may!work!as!many!as!20!hours!per!week!as!
              long!as!the!job!does!not!interfere!with!your!ability!to!continue!as!a!
              full"time!student!or!take!away!an!employment!opportunity!from!a!
              U.S.!citizen!or!permanent!resident.!A!memorandum!from!the!ISA!is!
              required!for!the!hiring!department.!
          c. Off"campus!employment.!U.S.!immigration!regulations!require!an!
              F"1!student!who!wishes!to!accept!employment"off"campus!to!have!
              prior!written!permission!to!do!so.!If!you!are!in!good!academic!
              standing!and!have!been!in!lawful!F"1!status!for!at!least!one!
              academic!year,!you!may!be!eligible!for!Curricular!Practical!Training!
              (CPT).! !
              !        !


                                                                              31
                         d. Practical!training.!Students!in!F"1!status!may!be!granted!permission!
                             by!the!USCIS!to!remain!in!the!Untied!States!to!undertake!full"time!
                             employment!(called!“practical!training”)!for!up!to!12!months!after!
                             graduation!or!completion!of!studies.!The!ISA!has!an!information!
                             sheet!with!up"to"date!requirements!and!procedures!concerning!
                             practical!training.!It!is!wise!to!apply!for!practical!training!permission!
                             one!of!two!months!before!the!end!of!your!final!academic!term!at!
                             the!University.! !
        iii. F"2!Status.!The!spouse!or!child!of!an!F"1!student!enters!the!U.S.!in!F"2!status!and!
              is!admitted!for!the!same!length!of!time!as!the!“F"1”!person.!If!the!spouse!or!child!
              does!not!accompany!the!student!to!the!U.S.,!but!intends!to!arrive!later,!the!
              student’s!U.S.!institution!must!prepare!an!I"20!for!the!spouse’s!use,!giving!the!
              expiration!date!of!the!student’s!authorized!stay.!Any!student!wishing!to!bring!a!
              spouse!and/or!child!to!the!U.S.!should!visit!the!ISA!to!discuss!the!financial!
              implications!of!the!action,!and!to!have!the!I"20!form!prepared.!
            !      !        Persons!in!F"2!status!are!prohibited!from!all!employment!!
            !
V. Becoming!a!Permanent!Resident!
!      Some!non"immigrant!students!in!the!U.S.!decide!they!would!like!to!remain!here!for!an!
indefinite!period!of!time.!That!is,!they!decided!that!they!would!like!to!become!“permanent!
residents”!or!“immigrants”!in!the!U.S.!The!requirements!and!procedures!for!becoming!a!
permanent!resident!are!too!complicated!for!inclusion!in!this!Handbook.!What!is!included!
here!is!brief,!general!information!that!should!be!taken!into!account!by!anyone!considering!
an!application!to!“adjust”!to!permanent!resident!status.!The!ISA!can!answer!some!of!the!
questions!of!non"immigrants!who!are!considering!immigrating!and!who!believe!they!are!
qualified!to!do!so,!but!it!is!not!the!function!of!the!ISA!to!give!extensive!assistance!in!these!
cases.!
            a. Who!Qualifies?!
            !      In!general,!the!purpose!of!the!laws!concerning!immigration!to!the!U.S.!is!to!
            protect!employment!opportunities!in!the!U.S.!for!American!citizens!or!people!who!
            are!already!permanent!resident!aliens.!Exception!to!this!general!concern!is!usually!
            made!in!the!case!of!non"U.S.!Americans!who!have!close!family!relationships!(i.e.,!
            spouse,!parents,!brothers,!sisters)!with!people!who!are!U.S.!citizens!or!permanent!
            residents.!An!exception!is!sometimes!made!in!the!case!of!persons!who!would!suffer!
            persecution!for!political,!religious!or!racial!reasons!if!they!were!compelled!to!return!
            to!their!home!countries.!
            !      Thus,!in!general,!those!who!might!qualify!for!immigrant!status!are!people!(1)!
            who!are!closely!related!to!a!person!who!is!a!U.S.!citizen!or!permanent!resident,!or!
            (2)!who!can!demonstrate!that!they!would!be!subject!to!persecution!upon!their!
            return!to!their!home!country,!or!(3)!who!can!obtain!a!certification!from!the!U.S.!
            Department!of!Labor!affirming!that!they!have!employable!skills!that!are!in!short!
            supply!among!U.S.!American!citizens!or!permanent!residents.!(There!are!specific!
            procedures!for!applying!for!a!“Labor!Certification.”)!



                                                                                             32
       b. Procedures!
       !    The!procedures!for!applying!for!immigrant!status!vary!depending!on!the!basis!
       upon!which!the!application!is!made.!The!purpose!of!these!procedures!is!to!
       demonstrate!that!the!applicant!(1)!is!the!person!he!or!she!claims!to!be,!(2)!has!the!
       qualifications!he!or!she!claims!to!have!(e.g.,!being!the!brother!of!a!U.S.!citizen!or!
       having!a!Labor!Certification),!and!(3)!does!not!have!characteristics!(e.g.,!past!
       conviction!for!certain!kinds!of!crimes)!that!would!make!him!or!her!ineligible!for!
       permanent!resident!status.!
       !
VI.   Income!Tax!
       a. Who!Files!an!Income!Tax!Return?!
       !   Nearly!everyone!who!works!in!the!United!States!must!pay!federal!income!tax.!
       Some!states!also!collect!taxes.!There!are!some!exceptions.!However,!U.S.!legislation!
       requires!all!international!students!in!F"1!and!J"1!status!to!file!the!Form!8843!–!even!
       if!the!student!did!not!work!at!all.!Contact!the!local!Internal!Revenue!Service!office!
       for!further!assistance!in!completing!the!appropriate!forms.!
       !      There!may!be!a!current,!tax!treaty!between!your!country!and!the!United!
       States.!That!treaty!may!exempt!your!income!from!taxation.!
       b. When!to!File!your!Income!Tax!Return.!
       !   April!15!is!the!deadline!for!filing!a!return!on!the!income!earned!during!the!
       preceding!calendar!year.!Sometime!during!January!each!year,!your!employer!will!
       send!you!a!“W"2!Form,”!showing!the!amount!you!have!earned!during!the!preceding!
       year!and!the!amount!of!federal!and!state!income!tax!that!has!been!withheld.!The!
       W"2!form!is!used!in!the!preparation!of!you!income!tax!return.!The!amount!withheld!
       often!exceeds!the!amount!you!would!be!required!to!repay,!so!failure!to!file!a!tax!
       return!may!result!in!a!financial!loss!for!you.!After!leaving!the!U.S.,!you!can!get!a!tax!
       return!form!from!the!nearest!U.S.!consul!for!use!in!filing!your!tax!form!for!the!
       calendar!year!during!which!you!left!the!U.S.!These!forms!become!available!in!the!
       January!after!your!departure.!
       c. Where!to!Get!Tax!Forms!
       !   Tax!forms!and!instructions!are!available!on!the!IRS!website,!www.irs.gov.!If!
       you!have!previously!filed!an!income!tax!return,!a!new!one!will!be!mailed!to!you!in!
       the!following!year.!
       d. Documentation!
       !    It!is!a!very!good!idea!to!keep!complete!records!of!your!financial!transactions.!
       Without!good!records,!completing!your!income!tax!returns!can!be!difficult.!If!you!
       seek!assistance!from!someone!else!in!the!preparation!of!you!income!tax!returns,!
       that!person!will!have!to!have!thorough!records!of!your!income!and!expenditures.!
       Keep!a!copy!of!any!income!tax!for!you!submit.!
       e. Getting!Assistance!in!Filing!Tax!Returns!
       !    The!Internal!Revenue!Service!(IRS)!is!the!U.S.!agency!responsible!for!the!
       collection!of!income!taxes.!You!may!address!questions!to!the!IRS!by!calling!
       800"241"3860,!toll!free.!


                                                                                      33
             !     There!are!a!number!of!businesses!which,!for!a!fee,!will!assist!taxpayers!in!the!
             preparation!of!their!income!tax!returns.!You!can!find!them!in!the!yellow!pages!
             under!“Tax!Return!Preparation.”!
             !     The!ISA!cannot!provide!assistance!in!preparing!tax!returns;!however,!the!
             International!Student!Office!provides!a!free!tax!workshop!for!international!students!
             each!March.! ! Income!tax!laws!and!procedures!are!too!complex!and!ever"changing.!
             Only!a!trained!person!whose!business!is!to!remain!up"to"date!concerning!those!
             laws!and!procedures!can!help.!
             !
    VII. Social!Security!
             a. What!is!it?!
!        !      Briefly,!“Social!Security”!is!the!U.S.!government’s!social!insurance!plan.!It!is!
intended!to!benefit!retired!people!and!certain!people!who!are!injured,!disabled,!or!left!
without!adequate!means!of!financial!support.!It!is!financed!by!means!of!withholdings!from!
employees’!pay!and!employers’!contributions.!Virtually!all!U.S.!Americans!have!a!“social!
security!number”!which!designates!their!account!with!the!Social!Security!Administration.!         !
             b. Obtaining!a!Social!Security!Number!
!        !        If!you!are!employed!in!the!U.S.,!you!will!need!a!social!security!number!even!if!
your!pay!is!exempt!from!Social!Security!withholdings!(see!next!paragraph).!To!get!a!social!
security!number,!you!must!have!an!offer!of!employment!from!an!on"campus!employer,!unless!
you!are!participating!in!practical!training.! ! Once!you!have!an!offer!of!employment,!please!
notify!the!International!Student!Office!so!that!a!letter!can!be!given!to!you!to!take!to!the!Social!
Security!Administration!to!procure!your!Social!Security!Number.! ! This!typically!takes!about!
two!weeks.!
             c. Social!Security!Taxes!
!        !        In!many!cases,!holders!of!F"1!visas!are!exempt!from!withholdings!for!Social!
Security.!The!University!does!not!withhold!for!Social!Security!in!the!case!of!currently!enrolled!
students,!foreign!or!U.S.!American.!If!you!hold!an!F"1!visa,!and!you!are!working,!and!you!are!
not!currently!a!student,!you!are!responsible!for!making!certain!your!employer!knows!that!you!
are!exempt!from!Social!Security!withholding.! !
!        !        !        !       !        !         !
!
     VIII. Tax!Clearance!for!Departing!from!the!U.S.!
             a. What!it!is!
!        !         Like!most!governments,!the!U.S.!government!wants!assurance!that!aliens!
leaving!the!country!do!not!owe!any!taxes.!It!therefore!has!a!requirement!that!most!departing!
aliens!obtain!a!“Certificate!of!Compliance”!(also!called!a!“sailing!permit”!or!“exit!permit”)!
before!they!leave.!The!sailing!permit!is!issued!by!the!Internal!Revenue!Service!(IRS)!as!evidence!
that!the!alien’s!income!taxes!have!been!paid.!
             b. Who!is!Required!to!Get!a!Sailing!Permit!
!        Students!who!have!F"1!visas!and!who!have!not!been!employed!while!in!the!U.S.!are!
not!required!to!obtain!a!sailing!permit.!F"1!students!who!have!been!employed!are!supposed!to!
obtain!a!sailing!permit.!


                                                                                          34
        c. Procedure!for!Obtaining!a!Sailing!Permit!
              i. When!to!Get!the!Permit.!It!is!not!possible!to!get!a!sailing!permit!more!
                   than!30!days!before!departure!from!the!U.S.!The!IRS!recommends!that!
                   sailing!permits!be!applied!for!between!15!and!30!days!in!advance!of!
                   departure.!
               ii. Where!to!Go.!It!is!possible!to!get!your!sailing!permit!at!any!IRS!office!but!
                   it!is!advisable!to!get!yours!at!the!IRS!office!which!serves!the!Pensacola!
                   area.!That!office!is!located!at!220!W.!Garden!Street,!4th!Floor,!Century!
                   Bank!Towers!Building,!8:30!a.m.!to!4:30!p.m.,!and!requires!a!personal!
                   visit.!
              iii. What!Documents!to!Take.!The!documentation!requirements!for!
                   obtaining!a!sailing!permit!are!extensive.!Listed!below!are!the!documents!
                   which!will!generally!enable!international!students!to!get!a!sailing!permit.!
                   Sailing!permit!applicants!should!keep!in!mind!that!they!may!be!asked!to!
                   provide!additional!documents,!and!that!personnel!at!the!IRS!office!will!
                   not!make!telephone!calls!to!confirm!information!that!is!given!to!them!
                   orally.!Thus,!applicants!need!to!have!all!required!documents!with!them.!
                   These!documents!include:!
                        1. Your!passport!and!Form!I"94!(Arrival"Departure!Record,!the!small,!
                            white!card!usually!kept!in!the!passport)!
                        2. Your!ticket!for!departing!from!the!U.S.,!or!evidence!of!the!date!
                            you!intend!to!depart!
                        3. Copies!of!your!income!tax!returns!for!the!three!previous!years,!
                            and!wage!and!tax!statements!(W"2!forms)!for!that!period!
                        4. Canceled!checks!showing!payment!of!taxes!paid!in!three!previous!
                            years!(if!taxes!were!required)!
                        5. A!wage!and!tax!statement!from!your!employer!for!the!current!
                            calendar!year!(if!you!are!employed!by!the!University!of!West!
                            Florida,!you!get!a!wage!and!tax!statement!from!the!Payroll!
                            Office),!or!evidence!that!you!have!had!financial!support!that!is!
                            not!taxable.!Such!evidence!might!be!an!official!letter!from!your!
                            sponsor!showing!the!terms!of!your!award.!
                        6. Receipts!for!the!sale!of!any!personal!possessions!which!have!
                            been!sold!at!a!profit.! !
!   !




!
!
!
!



                                                                                     35
                                     Chapter Five
                                Pensacola Living
!
I. Management!of!Money!
!    !    Most!international!students,!like!large!numbers!of!U.S.!American!students,!live!on!
limited!budgets.!It!is!important!to!manage!your!money!wisely!in!order!to!make!sure!it!lasts!as!
long!as!possible.!It!is!important!to!be!cautious!about!spending!money!until!you!have!become!
accustomed!to!the!value!of!the!dollar!and!have!developed!a!thorough!realization!of!what!your!
essential!living!expenses!will!be.!(In!thinking!about!the!value!of!the!dollar,!it!helps!to!realize!
that!students!working!part"time!on!campus!generally!earn!about!$6.79!per!hour.!At!that!rate,!it!
would!take!more!than!four!hours!of!work!to!buy!a!$25!book,!and!about!eight!hour!of!working!
to!buy!a!$35!pair!of!shoes.!Other!prices!can!be!considered!in!relationship!to!the!amount!of!
work!that!would!be!required!to!purchase!the!item.)!It!is!not!wise!to!carry!large!amounts!of!
cash!with!you,!or!to!keep!it!at!your!residence.!Instead,!deposit!it!in!a!bank.!
     a. United!States!Currency!
          i. Coins.!U.S.!American!coins!com!in!two!colors!and!six!sizes.!Unfortunately!
              smaller"sized!coins!are!not!always!lower!in!value!than!larger!coins.!
               ! The!penny,!or!cent,!worth!1!cent,!is!the!only!copper"colored!coin.!
               ! The!nickel,!worth!5!cents,!is!silver"colored!and!larger!than!a!penny.!
               ! The!dime,!worth!10!cents,!is!silver"colored!and!is!smaller!than!any!other!U.S.!
                  coin.!
               ! The!quarter,!worth!25!cents,!is!silver!in!color!and!is!larger!than!the!nickel.!
               ! The!half"dollar!or!50"cent"piece,!silver!in!color!and!larger!than!the!quarter,!is!
                  not!in!common!use.!
               ! The!silver!dollar!comes!in!two!forms,!neither!of!which!is!very!often!seen!in!
                  circulation.!The!Susan!B.!Anthony!silver!dollar!is!about!the!size!of!a!quarter;!
                  the!older!silver!dollar!is!the!largest!U.S.!coin.!
         ii. Paper!Money.!All!U.S.!paper!money!is!the!same!size!and!same!color.!
              Denominations!include!$1!(fairly!commonly!called!a!“buck”),!$2,!$5,!$10,!$20,!$50,!
              $100!and!larger!amounts.!
     b. Banks!and!Banking!Services!
          i. Opening!an!account.!To!open!any!kind!of!bank!account,!simply!go!to!the!bank!of!
              your!choice!and!tell!the!receptionist!that!you!would!like!to!open!an!account.!The!
              receptionist!will!direct!you!to!a!person!who!can!explain!the!kinds!of!accounts!that!
              are!available!and!can!open!one!for!you.!Married!persons!can!open!a!“joint!
              account”!which!either!or!both!of!them!can!use.!There!are!periodic!changes!in!the!
              kinds!of!accounts!and!the!other!services!that!banks!offer.!Banks!have!“customer!
              service”!personnel!whose!job!it!is!to!answer!customers’!questions!and!assist!with!
              problems!that!have!to!do!with!banking!services.!
         ii. Checking!account.!(Called!a!“current!account”!in!many!countries!of!the!world).!
              There!are!three!kinds!of!checking!accounts!available,!the!“special,”!the!“regular,”!


                                                                                         36
        and!the!“checking!with!interest.”!The!kind!of!account!you!should!open!should!
        depend!on!the!number!of!checks!you!will!write!each!month!and/or!the!amount!of!
        money!you!will!retain!in!your!checking!account:!
          1. Special!checking!account.!If!you!have!a!special!account,!you!will!be!assessed!a!
             “service!charge”!for!each!check!you!write.!If!you!are!not!able!to!retain!a!
             prescribed!minimum!balance!in!your!account!(usually!$100!or!$200,!
             depending!on!the!bank),!and!you!will!be!writing!fewer!than!10!checks!per!
             month,!you!should!open!up!a!special!account.!
          2. Regular!checking!account.!With!a!regular!checking!account!there!are!no!
             service!charges!if!you!keep!a!“minimum!balance”!in!your!account!at!all!times.!
             The!minimum!balance!is!$300!at!some!banks!and!$500!at!others.!If!you!have!a!
             regular!account!and!your!balance!goes!below!the!required!minimum,!you!will!
             be!assessed!a!service!charge!of!$8.00!to!$10.00!for!the!month!regardless!of!
             the!number!of!checks!you!write.!The!exact!amount!of!the!service!charge!varies!
             form!bank!to!bank.!Thus!you!should!open!a!regular!account!if!you!are!able!to!
             maintain!the!minimum!balance,!and!thereby!avoid!all!service!charges.!
c. Checking!with!Interest!
   !!         No!interest!is!paid!on!money!deposited!in!a!special!or!a!regular!checking!
   account.!Interest!is!paid!on!money!deposited!in!a!checking"with"interest!account.!
   (Different!banks!have!different!names!for!these!accounts.)!There!is!a!small!monthly!
   maintenance!fee!for!checking"with"interest!accounts!unless!you!maintain!a!minimum!
   balance!of!$1,000!or!more!in!the!account.! !
   !!         It!is!very!important!to!keep!a!running!balance!of!your!account!each!time!you!
   write!a!check.!A!charge!is!levied!each!time!you!“overdraw”!your!account,!that!is,!each!
   time!you!write!a!check!which!is!not!covered!but!the!amount!you!have!deposited!in!
   your!account.!
   !!         Most!people!pay!their!bills!by!means!of!personal!checks,!sometimes!
   delivered!personally!but!usually!sent!through!the!mail.!(Cash!should!not!be!sent!in!the!
   mail.)!Sending!checks!through!the!mail!and!paying!online!are!the!most!convenient!
   ways!to!pay!your!bills.!Your!canceled!checks,!returned!to!you!periodically!by!your!bank!
   after!they!have!been!cashed!by!the!person!to!whom!you!wrote!them,!are!legal!receipts!
   for!payments!you!have!made.!
     i. Types!of!checks.! ! When!you!open!a!checking!account,!you!will!be!asked!to!decide!
        whether!you!want!“personalized!checks”!or!“line!checks.”!Personalized!checks!have!
        your!name,!address!and!student!identification!number!or!other!information!you!
        choose!printed!on!them.!In!addition,!they!are!numbered!consecutively.!You!must!
        pay!a!few!dollars!for!your!supply!of!personalized!checks.!
   !    !     Line!checks,!by!contrast,!are!free.!All!that!is!printed!on!them!is!your!name.!
        Thus!they!contain!less!personal!identification,!and!in!some!cases!are!more!difficult!
        to!cash,!especially!if!you!are!out!of!Pensacola.!Whether!you!choose!personalized!
        checks!of!line!checks!is!a!matter!or!personal!preference.!Some!people!prefer!lone!
        checks!because!they!are!free.!Other!people!prefer!personalized!checks!because!it!
        saves!the!inconvenience!of!writing!their!address!and!telephone!number!on!each!
        check!that!they!cash!or!use!to!make!a!payment!at!a!store.!


                                                                                   37
          ii. Writing!a!check.!Here!are!steps!to!follow!when!writing!a!check!(refer!to!the!
              examples!on!the!next!page):!
                1. Write!the!date!on!which!you!are!“issuing”!the!check.!
                2. Write!the!name!of!the!person!or!business!to!which!you!are!making!the!
                   payment.!
                3. Write!the!amount!of!the!payment!in!Arabic!numerals.!
                4. Spell!out!the!number!of!dollars!included!in!the!payment,!and!write!the!
                   number!of!cents!in!the!form!of!a!fraction.!(e.g.,!50/100!means!50!cents!out!of!
                   the!100!cents!in!a!dollar.)!
                5. Sign!your!name!as!it!is!printed!on!the!check.!
                6. Note!the!purpose!of!the!payment.!
!      If!you!are!using!line!checks!that!do!not!have!serial!numbers!printed!on!them,!be!sure!
before!you!write!anything!else!on!the!check!that!you!have!assigned!it!a!number!in!the!space!
provided!in!the!upper!right"hand!corner.!The!number!facilitates!your!record"keeping.! !
!      Immediately!after!you!write!a!check!you!should!record!all!the!information!for!it!on!your!
check!register!(see!the!example).!This!includes!the!check!number,!the!date!the!check!is!written,!
the!name!of!the!payee!(that!is,!the!person!or!business!to!whom!the!payment!is!being!made),!
amount!of!the!check,!and!the!fee!for!the!check,!if!there!is!one.!Then!calculate!the!balance!
remaining!in!your!account.!In!the!accompanying!example,!a!check!for!$4.50!was!written!on!an!
account!with!a!balance!of!$50.00.!There!was!a!20"cent!fee!for!the!check.!The!new!balance!is!
$45.30.!
!      When!you!add!money!to!your!account!(“make!a!deposit”),!you!should,!of!course,!record!
that!also.!The!accompanying!record!shows!an!example!of!a!$30.00!deposit.!
!      For!your!convenience,!the!Bank!of!Pensacola!is!located!on!campus.!There!are!also!
several!other!banks!located!within!five!miles!of!campus.!
         iii. Savings!account.!A!savings!account!earns!interest!at!a!higher!rate!than!an!
              interest"bearing!account.!If!you!have!several!hundreds!of!dollars!above!your!
              routine!living!expense,!a!savings!account!is!a!safe!way!to!invest!this!money.!You!can!
              withdraw!any!amount!form!a!regular!(or!“passbook”)!savings!account!whenever!it!
              is!necessary.!If!you!have!a!savings!account!and!a!checking!account!in!the!same!
              bank,!you!can!telephone!and!ask!the!bank!to!transfer!funds!from!your!savings!to!
              your!checking!account.! !
              !     Banks!also!offer!“certificates!of!deposit”!and!“money!market!certificates”!
              which!require!specified!minimum!deposits!and!earn!higher!rates!of!interest!than!
              regular!savings!accounts,!but!which!must!remain!on!deposit!for!designated!periods!
              of!time.!A!certificate!of!deposit!or!money!market!certificate!is!a!prudent!
              investment!if!you!are!certain!that!you!will!not!need!money!until!the!designated!
              time!period!(which!can!be!90!days,!one!year,!or!more)!has!elapsed.!
              !     Most!banks!have!an!“automatic!teller!machine”!(ATM).!The!automatic!teller!is!
              a!computerized!device!through!which!bank!customers!can!make!deposits!or!
              withdrawals!at!any!time!of!day,!any!day!of!the!week.!To!operate!an!automatic!teller,!
              the!customer!needs!a!particular!plastic!card!that!the!bank!provides.!Instructions!
              for!operating!the!automatic!teller!are!given!on!the!teller!itself.!Automatic!tellers!
              are!located!at!the!banks!themselves!and!at!some!other!locations!in!the!community.! !


                                                                                         38
    iv. Traveler’s!checks.!Traveler’s!checks!provide!a!safe!way!to!carry!money!when!
           traveling!in!the!U.S.!and!abroad.!They!can!be!replaced!if!they!are!lost,!and!they!are!
           more!easily!accepted!by!businesses!away!form!your!own!area!of!residence.!Banks!
           sell!travelers!checks!for!a!small!fee.!
        !
d. Money!Management!Hints!(prepared!by!New!Zealand!student,!J.!Ross!Barnett,!and!
          his!wife,!Pauline)!
      i. Budget!carefully.!You!know!how!much!your!income!and!basic!expenditures!are,!so!
           pay!bills!immediately!at!the!start!of!each!month,!and!you!will!know!exactly!how!
           much!remains.!
     ii. Keep!accounts.!Keeping!track!of!expenditures!in!various!categories!(food,!books,!
           etc.)!can!pinpoint!areas!of!high!spending!which!might!surprise!you.!Done!on!a!
           monthly!basis,!this!can!give!you!quite!an!incentive!to!economize!in!certain!areas.!
   iii. Tax!returns.!Many!students!earn!so!little!that!any!income!taxes!withheld!might!
           well!be!refunded.!Examine!all!options!for!exemptions!or!rebates!and!do!not!
           hesitate!to!seek!advice!from!the!Internal!Revenue!Service.!Keep!records!of!
           expenditures!throughout!the!year!so!that!filing!out!returns!will!be!easier.!
    iv. Transportation.!Recognize!that!a!few!extra!dollars!for!a!near"campus!apartment!
           can!save!hundreds!of!dollars!each!year!on!a!car.!This!is!part!of!the!“U.S.!American!
           Dream,”!and!it!takes!some!courage!to!realize!that!the!automobile!is!expensive,!
           poorly!constructed!and!in!many!cases!unnecessary.!Many!young!U.S.!Americans!
           are!rejecting!the!traditional!values!of!their!parents!and!turning!to!bicycles!and!
           buses!as!primary!means!of!transportation.!You!can!always!rent!a!car!for!a!trip!if!
           need!be.!It!is!much!less!expensive!in!the!long!run.!
     v. Credit.!For!many!of!us!this!is!the!first!exposure!to!credit!on!any!scale.!For!those!of!
           us!who!arrive!in!the!United!States!with!few!household!possessions,!it!is!a!lifesaver,!
           but!be!aware!of!over"extending!yourself.!Remember!that!you!may!be!paying!from!
           18!to!21!percent!per!year!in!interest!on!some!accounts.!It!is!sometimes!useful!to!
           have!a!credit!card,!but!it!is!difficult!to!get!one’s!first!card,!since!one!has!no!“credit!
           rating”!to!establish!reliability!in!the!eyes!of!the!creditor.!
    vi. Buy!used.!Garage!and!yard!sales!advertised!in!newspapers!are!frequent!events,!
           and!you!can!buy!used!appliances!and!household!goods!at!very!reasonable!prices.!
           Sell!them!the!same!way!when!you!leave.!
   vii. Eating!out.!If!you!do!not!live!in!a!dormitory!where!meals!are!included,!it!is!very!
           tempting!to!eat!out!regularly!rather!than!preparing!your!own!food.!Eating!out!can!
           double!your!food!bill.!If!you!doubt!it,!keep!track!of!your!expenditures!for!a!month.!
  viii. Take!advantage!of!“sales.”!Newspaper!advertisements!will!tell!you!when!a!store!is!
           having!a!“sale”!on!something,!meaning!it!is!being!sold!at!a!lower!price!than!usual.!
           The!periods!when!there!are!the!most!and!largest!sales!are!around!Independence!
           Day!(July!4)!and!Christmas!(December!25).!
                     !
                     !
                     !



                                                                                           39
II. Medical!Care!and!Expenses!
     a. General!Nature!of!the!U.S.!Medical!Care!Delivery!System!
!        The!medical!care!delivery!system!in!the!U.S.!has!two!characteristics!that!distinguish!it!
from!many!others!in!the!world.!First,!it!devotes!very!considerable!resources!to!efforts!to!
prolong!the!lives!of!people!with!serious!illnesses!or!unusual!injuries.!It!is!less!concerned!than!
some!other!systems!with!preventive!health!care!for!the!general!population.!The!U.S.!system!
involves!enormous!investments!in!research,!medication,!and!technology.!
!        Second,!there!is!no!general!governmentally!supported!system!for!paying!individual’s!
medical!costs.!That!is,!there!is!not!a!national!medical!care!program!or!a!national!insurance!
program.!
!       The!result!of!these!and!other!factors!is!that!medical!costs!in!the!U.S.!are!extremely!high,!
and!they!must!be!paid!by!the!individual!incurring!them.!Individuals!can!buy!health!and!
accident!insurance!which!will!pay!some!of!their!medical!expenses.!No!health!insurance!plan!
readily!available!to!students!covers!all!medical!expenses.!Subsequent!paragraphs!give!more!
information!about!health!insurance.!
     b. Health!and!Accident!Insurance!
           i. Need!for!Health!Insurance.!To!avoid!having!to!pay!high!medical!bills!that!result!
              from!illness!or!injury!(e.g.,!nearly!$200!daily!for!staying!in!a!hospital;!more!than!
              $1,000!for!a!routine!hernia!operation),!it!is!prudent!to!buy!health!insurance.!
              Insurance!protects!against!the!need!to!meet!the!entire!burden!of!high!medical!
              expenses!by!spreading!the!cost!among!a!group!of!people,!not!all!of!whom!will!
              suffer!injury!or!illness!that!will!result!in!medical!bills.!
          ii. Coverage!provided!by!health!insurance.!Health!and!accident!insurance!does!not!
              cover!all!medical!expenses.!In!general,!it!covers!higher!costs!that!result!from!
              accidents!and!serious!illnesses,!with!attendant!hospitalization,!medical!tests!and!
              the!services!of!doctors!and!nurses.!It!does!not!cover!the!costs!for!routine!visits!to!a!
              doctor,!medication!a!doctor!might!prescribe!for!normal!illnesses,!routine!dental!
              work,!vision!examinations!or!eye!glasses.!These!costs!must!usually!be!met!by!the!
              individual!even!if!he!or!she!has!health!and!accident!insurance.!
              !    ! The!coverage!afforded!by!various!health!insurance!policies!varies.!Literature!
              coming!with!each!policy!describes!what!it!covers.!Of!course,!policies!that!are!more!
              comprehensive!in!their!coverage!are!more!expensive.!
         iii. Health!and!Accident!insurance!for!students!and!their!dependents.!Students!may!
              purchase!health!insurance!through!a!health!insurance!company!contracted!out!
              with!the!University!of!West!Florida.!Policy!information!and!applications!are!
              available!in!the!International!Student!Office.! ! If!you!have!a!health!insurance!policy!
              from!your!home!country,!you!must!have!that!provider!complete!the!Health!
              Insurance!Compliance!Form.! ! Your!health!insurance!coverage!from!your!home!
              country!needs!to!meet!the!State!of!Florida!regulations.!
    ! !            The!State!University!System!of!Florida!requires!all!international!students!and!
    their!families!to!have!adequate!health!and!accident!insurance.!If!you!do!not!have!insurance!
    that!is!provided!to!you!by!a!sponsoring!agency,!you!should!buy!either!the!policy!sold!
    through!the!University!or!one!of!the!policies!that!is!designed!for!international!students!in!



                                                                                            40
    the!U.S.!
     c. ! Health!Care!Facilities!
            i. Health!Center:!
            !       ! All!students!registered!at!the!University!are!eligible!for!free!doctor’s!services!
            at!the!Health!Center.!The!Health!Center!is!located!in!Building!63!behind!Residence!Hall!
            62!(Telephone:!474"2172).!Hours!of!operation!are:!Monday!through!Friday,!8:00!a.m.!
            to!4:30!p.m.!Nurses!are!available!each!day!of!the!week.!The!doctor’s!hours!vary!each!
            semester.!Students!must!have!their!Nautilus!Card!with!them!when!going!to!the!Health!
            Center.!Students!have!to!pay!for!lab!fees!and!medication!prescribed!by!the!student!
            health!physician.!The!Health!Center!also!functions!as!an!information!resource!center!
            for!community!health!related!agencies.!
           ii. Medical!Care:!
            !       ! Private!Doctor.!You!may!wish!to!ask!someone!you!have!met!here!to!
            recommend!a!doctor!or!dentist,!or!you!may!simply!look!in!the!yellow!pages!of!the!
            telephone!directory!under!“Physician”!or!“Dentist”!for!the!name!of!a!doctor!you!could!
            contact.!You!should!always!telephone!a!doctor!or!dentist!to!make!an!appointment.!It!
            is!common!for!families!in!the!U.S.!to!select!a!“family!doctor”!whom!they!visit!when!
            they!need!examinations!or!medical!care.!In!time,!the!family!doctor!becomes!familiar!
            with!each!family!member!as!an!individual.!The!Escambia!County!Health!Department!is!
            a!public!institution!which!provides!a!variety!of!health!services!and!can!also!give!you!
            additional!information!about!health!care!in!the!Pensacola!area.!Their!office!is!located!
            at!2251!N.!Palafox!Street!(telephone:!435"6500),!and!they!will!be!happy!to!answer!any!
            questions!you!may!have.!
            !       ! There!are!four!hospitals!in!Pensacola:!
                         ! Baptist!Hospital! !            !        1000!Moreno!Street!(434"4011)!
                         ! Sacred!Heart!Hospital!         !        5151!N.!9th!Avenue!(474"7000)!
                         ! West!Florida!Hospital!         !        8383!N.!Davis!Highway!(478"4460)!
!       !
          iii. Dental!Clinic:! !
          !         ! University!students!and!their!families!may!benefit!from!the!use!of!the!Dental!
          Clinic!which!is!staffed!by!students!who!are!training!to!become!dental!hygienists.!The!
          Dental!Clinic!is!primarily!a!learning!institution.!The!fees!are!minimal!and!usually!reflect!
          only!the!cost!of!materials!used!($8.00!for!a!cleaning,!fluoride!treatment,!and!exam!
          X"rays!are!free).!Health!insurance!does!not!cover!dental!care!unless!an!accident!has!
          injured!the!teeth!or!mouth.!The!Dental!Clinic!is!located!off!West!Highway!98!in!
          Warrington!at!the!Pensacola!Junior!College!West!Campus.!The!telephone!number!is!
          453"6608.!The!Clinic!is!open!Monday!through!Friday,!but!the!hours!may!vary.! ! So,!be!
          sure!to!call!first.!
          !         ! Dental!examinations!and!work!may!be!performed!by!private!dentists!for!a!
          higher!but!reasonable!fee.!You!may!call!the!Health!Center!on!campus!for!suggestions!of!
          dentists’!names,!or!you!can!consult!the!yellow!pages!found!in!the!back!of!the!
          telephone!directory.!
                          !



                                                                                              41
III. ! ! Services!
!     Transportation!within!Pensacola.!The!buses!in!the!City!charge!$1.00,!payable!upon!
entering!the!bus.!You!must!have!the!exact!amount!of!change.!Maps!of!all!bus!routes!are!
available!at!www.goecat.com!Also,!the!University!Parking!Services!will!provide!enrolled!
students!with!2!free!bus!passes!per!day.!There!are!the!Blue!and!White!Taxi,!Red!and!Gold!Taxi!
(477"5514),!Yellow!Cab!of!Pensacola!(433"3333)!and!more!companies!available!in!Pensacola.!
Taxi!service!is!generally!far!more!expensive!here!than!it!is!in!many!other!countries.!Taxicabs!
have!meters!which!register!the!fare!a!passenger!must!pay.!It!is!customary!to!pay!an!additional!
15!percent!of!the!fare!as!a!“tip.”!
           a. Outside!Pensacola!
               i. Bus.!Greyhound"Trailways!Bus!Lines!is!located!at!505!West!Burgess!Road!
                     (476"4800).!Buses!leave!for!places!as!far!away!as!San!Francisco,!New!York,!
                     Minneapolis,!etc.!Greyhound!offers!special!tickets!which!permit!unlimited!
                     travel!in!the!U.S.!for!periods!of!7,!15,!or!30!days.!Such!a!ticket!is!called!an!
                     “Ameripass.”!
               ii.   Air.!The!airport!is!about!15!minutes!from!UWF.!The!major!airlines!which!
                     serve!Pensacola!are!Delta!(432"9871),!U.S.!Air!(434"1771),!and!American!
                     (800"433"7300).!The!telephone!numbers!of!other!major!airlines!are!listed!
                     in!the!yellow!pages!of!the!telephone!directory!under!“Airline!Companies.”!
                     Reservation!for!air!travel!may!be!made!directly!with!an!airline!or!through!a!
                     travel!agency.!(See!in!the!yellow!pages!under!“Travel!Agencies!and!
                     Bureaus.”)!
              iii.   Trains.!Train!travel!is!best!arranged!through!a!travel!agent.!The!railroad!line,!
                     known!as!Amtrak,!stops!in!Pensacola.!Train!service!in!the!U.S.!is!not!of!the!
                     high!quality!of!train!service!in!Japan!or!Europe.!Efforts!are!being!made!to!
                     improve!it.!
              iv.    Private!Car.!In!the!Commons!(Building!22)!is!a!bulletin!board!where!
                     students!who!need!or!offer!rides!in!private!cars!can!post!their!names,!
                     telephone!numbers,!and!destinations.!It!is!common,!especially!during!
                     vacations,!for!students!to!take!trips!with!other!students,!sharing!the!
                     expenses!of!the!drive.!Argus!also!lists!students!and!staff!who!are!interested!
                     in!carpooling.!
               v.    Car!Rental.!You!may!wish!to!rent!a!car!for!a!limited!time.!Prices!vary,!so!you!
                     should!call!a!number!of!agencies!and!ask!about!their!charges.!Find!the!
                     agencies!in!the!yellow!pages!under!“Automobile!Renting!and!Leasing.”!You!
                     must!have!a!major!credit!card!to!rent!a!car.!
              vi.    Hitchhiking.!It!is!common!on!U.S.!American!highways!to!see!people!
                     hitchhiking,!that!is,!standing!by!the!side!of!the!road!and!indicating!with!a!
                     thumb!or!a!sign!that!they!want!a!ride!in!a!passing!car.!Hitchhiking!is!illegal!
                     in!many!states,!and!is!considered!by!some!people!to!be!dangerous.!
                     Students!are!warned!not!to!hitchhike.! !
             vii.    Driving.!A!valid!driver’s!license!is!necessary!to!drive!any!car.!Information!


                                                                                            42
       can!be!obtained!from!the!Division!of!Drivers!License!located!at!100!
       Stumpfield!Road,!(453"5393),!and!is!open!from!7:00!a.m.!to!6:00!p.m.!
       Monday!through!Friday.!After!obtaining!a!driver’s!license,!extreme!care!
       should!be!taken!in!either!renting!or!buying!a!new!or!used!car!because!of!
       the!expenses!of!maintenance!and!insurance.!
viii. Newspapers.!The!local!newspaper!is!the!Pensacola!News!Journal!
       (435"8500)!published!in!the!morning.!Its!advertisements!are!often!helpful!
       for!learning!about!“sales”!at!local!businesses.!The!Pensacola!News!Journal!
       is!available!at!dispensers!on!sidewalks!outside!many!stores!(and!the!
       Commons).!University!students!publish!the!Voyager!once!a!week!when!the!
       University!is!in!session.!It!is!a!good!idea!to!read!the!Voyager,!which!is!a!free!
       publication,!to!keep!informed!of!events!and!activities!on!campus.!The!
       Fountain!is!a!publication!mainly!for!staff!and!faculty!published!biweekly!
       throughout!the!year.!Extra!copies!are!located!at!the!Information!Desk!in!
       Building!71!or!in!the!Commons!(Building!22).!The!New!York!Times!carries!
       more!national!and!international!news!than!any!other!U.S.!paper.!You!can!
       purchase!the!Sunday!edition!from!most!bookstores.! !
     ! !        A!number!of!newspapers,!U.S.!magazines,!and!journals!are!received!
       at!the!main!library!of!the!University.!The!library!subscribes!to!62!
       newspapers;!about!ten!are!from!other!countries.!
 ix. Telephone.!Most!people!have!a!telephone!in!their!residence.!Telephones!
       can!be!installed!easily!and!quickly.!Much!more!business!is!transacted!by!
       telephone!in!this!country!than!in!many!other!countries!where!there!are!
       fewer!phones!and!the!telephone!is!not!as!efficient.!Having!a!telephone!
       costs!about!$20!each!month.!That!amount!covers!an!unlimited!number!of!
       local!calls,!that!is!within!the!Pensacola,!Pace,!and!Gulf!Breeze!areas,!and!
       few!other!surrounding!communities.!There!is!an!additional!charge!for!each!
       long!distance!call.!
          !     The!telephone!directory!is!very!useful.!It!contains!the!name,!address,!
       and!the!telephone!number!of!each!telephone!subscriber.!In!addition,!it!
       includes!in!the!first!few!pages,!emergency!telephone!numbers!and!
       instructions!for!making!various!kinds!of!telephone!calls.!It!has!a!map!of!the!
       area!it!serves.!Finally,!the!“yellow!pages”!section,!at!the!back!of!the!book,!
       lists!all!local!services!and!businesses,!according!to!the!kind!of!service!or!
       business!involved.!The!University!publishes!a!telephone!directory!with!the!
       names!and!addresses!of!all!students,!faculty,!and!staff.!
          !     To!order!telephone!service!from!BellSouth,!visit!the!company’s!
       website!at!www.bellsouth.com.!A!new!telephone!subscriber!(one!who!has!
       never!had!a!phone!in!the!U.S.)!or!a!person!who!has!had!a!phone!here!but!
       has!not!paid!his/her!bills!promptly!will!be!required!to!pay!a!deposit!to!have!
       a!phone!installed.!Return!of!the!deposit!can!be!requested!after!12!months!
       if!the!subscriber’s!bills!have!been!paid!promptly!during!that!time.!Students!
       can!purchase!telephones!at!Wal"Mart,!K"Mart,!Sears,!etc.!or!from!the!



                                                                              43
    telephone!company.!When!you!visit!the!company’s!business!office!to!order!
    a!telephone,!the!person!to!whom!you!talk!with!will!probably!try!to!induce!
    you!to!order!a!more!elaborate!telephone!than!the!standard!desk!model,!
    and!may!not!mention!the!less!expensive!models!unless!you!specifically!ask!
    about!them.!The!monthly!charge!for!the!more!elaborate!telephones!is!
    higher!than!the!monthly!charge!for!the!standard!model,!so!the!telephone!
    company!will!often!try!to!persuade!new!customers!to!order!one.!You!can!
    be!assured!that!the!standard!model!telephone,!which!comes!in!a!variety!of!
    colors,!is!adequate!for!making!any!kind!of!telephone!call.!Compare!prices!at!
    several!stores!before!buying!a!telephone!or!ask!the!advice!of!a!friend.!
        !   Using!telephones.!Telephone!numbers!in!the!U.S.!have!seven!digits.!
    For!example!the!number!of!the!University!is!474"2000.!In!addition!there!is!
    a!three!digit!“area!code”!designating!the!segment!of!the!country!in!which!
    the!phone!is!located.!The!area!code!for!Pensacola!is!850.!Area!codes!are!
    used!only!for!making!long"distance!calls.! !
  ! !       For!long"distance!calls!refer!to!the!instructions!on!the!front!of!the!
    telephone!directory.!You!will!dial!a!“1”,!then!the!area!code,!then!the!seven!
    digits.!Caution:!Long"distance!calling!is!comparatively!simple!here,!and!it!is!
    easy!to!run!up!a!large!telephone!bill!by!making!many!and/or!lengthy!
    long"distance!calls.!
      !     Direct!dialing!is!the!least!expensive!way!to!make!a!long"distance!call.!
    If!you!dial!the!wrong!number,!report!it!to!the!telephone!operator!
    immediately!by!dialing!“0”!and!telling!him/her!what!happened.!Then!you!
    will!not!be!charged!for!the!call.!Charges!for!the!direct!dialed!long"distance!
    calls!vary!according!to!the!time!of!day!when!they!are!made,!with!lower!
    rates!for!late!night,!weekend,!and!holiday!calls.!Refer!to!the!telephone!
    directory!page!on!“long"distance!rates”!for!more!information.!Also,!
    pre"paid!calling!cards!are!available!for!purchase!in!the!University!Bookstore!
    in!$5"$50!amounts.!
x. Calling!through!the!operator.! Dial!“0”!and!tell!the!operator!the!area!
    code!and!number!you!want!to!call.!He!or!she!will!dial!it!for!you.!This!is!a!
    more!expensive!way!to!make!a!long"distance!call.!There!are!two!general!
    reasons!for!using!this!method.!
          1. Calling!person"to"person:!If!you!want!to!speak!only!to!one!
             particular!person,!the!operator!will!dial!the!number!and!ask!for!that!
             person.!If!the!person!is!not!available!to!talk!to!you,!you!are!not!
             charged!for!the!call.!The!person"to"person!long"distance!call!is!the!
             most!expensive!kind.!
          2. Calling!“collect”.!If!you!wish!to!have!the!call!billed!to!the!person!you!
             re!calling,!rather!than!paying!for!it!yourself,!you!can!call!collect.!A!
             collect!call!may!be!either!person"to"person!or!station"to"station!
             (whereby!you!speak!to!whoever!answers).!When!you!place!a!collect!
             call,!the!operator!will!ask!the!person!who!answers!if!he!or!she!is!
             willing!to!pay!for!the!call.!


                                                                            44
             !   !       If!you!have!any!questions!about!how!to!use!a!telephone!or!
                 make!a!particular!call,!dial!“0”!or!411,!the!“information”!number!
                 used!to!get!a!phone!number!that!is!not!listed!in!the!directory.!
             !   !       For!emergencies!requiring!police!or!ambulance!assistance,!
                 students!living!off!campus!can!dial!911.!Students!living!on!campus!
                 in!the!residence!halls!should!dial!474"2415.!
b. Mail!
!     Mail!is!delivered!to!the!post!office!boxes!on!campus!Monday!through!
Saturday,!once!daily!around!9:00!a.m.!There!are!two!take!outs!daily!at!8:00!a.m.!
and!3:30!p.m.!You!should!notify!the!Post!Office!and!the!International!Student!
Advisor!whenever!you!change!your!address.!
!     If!you!must!get!a!letter!or!package!delivered!to!anywhere!in!the!U.S.!the!
following!day,!a!service!called!“express!mail”!is!also!available.!Call!the!Post!Office!on!
campus!for!pick!up!time.!Express!mail!is!expensive,!but!often!times!speed!is!more!
important!than!expense.!
!     The!Post!Office,!on!campus,!is!located!in!the!Building!22A,!next!to!the!
Commons.!Its!telephone!number!is!474"2441.!It!is!open!from!8:15!a.m.!to!4:00!p.m.!
The!Main!Office!is!located!at!1400!W.!Jordan!Street!(434"9127)!in!Pensacola.!The!
station!nearest!to!the!University!is!at!7150!Tippin!Avenue!(476"7936).!
!     Postal!rates!change!periodically.!To!get!information!about!them,!ask!someone!
who!lives!here!or!call!the!Post!Office.!
!     For!mailing!parcels!overseas,!different!countries!have!different!regulations!
governing!the!parcels!they!will!receive!and!handle!in!their!mail.!The!regulations!
concern!such!things!as!the!contents!of!the!parcels,!their!weight,!their!dimensions,!
and!the!manner!in!which!they!must!be!wrapped.!Mailing!books!is!comparatively!
inexpensive,!whether!they!are!being!sent!elsewhere!in!the!U.S.!or!to!another!
country.!(Flammable!materials!such!as!perfumes!cannot!be!mailed!even!in!the!U.S.)!
The!Post!Office!has!information!on!the!postal!regulations!of!various!countries.!To!
avoid!delays,!it!is!wise!to!visit!the!Post!Office!and!request!information!about!the!
requirements!for!mailing!any!package!you!wish!to!send!out!of!the!U.S.!
c. Laundry!and!Dry!Cleaning!
!     Students!usually!wash!their!own!clothes.!There!are!washing!machines!and!
drying!machines!(called!“washers”!and!“dryers”)!in!every!UWF!residence!hall!and!
most!apartment!buildings.!People!who!live!in!places!without!washers!take!their!
clothes!to!Laundromats,!where!large!numbers!of!washers!and!dryers!are!available.!
To!locate!the!Laundromat!nearest!you,!ask!a!neighbor!or!look!in!the!yellow!pages!
under!“Laundries!–!Self!Service”.!
!     If!you!have!never!used!such!machines!before,!it!is!a!good!idea!to!ask!
someone!which!of!your!clothes!can!safely!be!put!into!washing!machines,!how!they!
should!be!sorted,!how!much!to!put!into!a!machine,!and!how!much!soap!to!use.!
!
!
!


                                                                                45
IV. Housekeeping!
!     ! Many!people!coming!to!the!United!States!have!never!faced!the!need!to!do!their!own!
chopping,!cooking,!and!housecleaning.!These!things!have!always!been!done!by!parents!and/or!
housekeepers.!If!these!activities!are!new!to!you,!you!will!have!to!realize!that!in!the!U.S.!it!is!
completely!acceptable!for!people!who!are!not!servants!or!women!to!shop!for!groceries,!to!
cook,!wash!dishes!and!clothes,!clean!house,!and!take!care!of!the!children.!
!     Most!U.S.!Americans,!all!U.S.!American!landlords,!and!the!staff!in!the!Office!of!Housing!
think!it!is!important!that!living!quarters!be!kept!reasonably!clean.!The!concern!for!cleanliness!
is!evident!in!the!supermarket,!where!you!will!see!large!numbers!of!liquids,!powders!and!sprays!
designed!to!help!or!clean!or!polish!dishes,!floors,!windows,!toilet!bowls,!walls,!furniture,!ovens,!
and!so!on.!In!addition,!you!will!see!brooms,!mops,!dust!mops,!dish!rags,!sponges,!scouring!
pads,!and!various!brushes,!all!for!cleaning!purposes.!You!will!not!need!all!of!these!products.!
You!should!ask!someone!who!lives!here,!and!who’s!living!quarters!seem!clean,!to!help!you!
select!the!cleaning!supplies!you!will!need.!
!     ! MAJOR!APPLIANCES!
!     Stoves.!Kitchen!stoves!may!be!gas!or!electric.!In!either!case,!it!is!important!that!the!
burners!and!oven!be!kept!clean!so!they!will!work!safely!and!effectively.!You!should!wipe!the!
burners!after!each!use!to!keep!soiled!food!from!hardening!on!them.!The!oven!should!be!
cleaned!periodically,!using!ammonia!or!special!oven!cleaner.!When!using!oven!cleaner!or!any!
other!specialized!cleaning!product,!read!the!label!carefully!and!follow!instructions.!Many!
cleaning!products!are!harmful!if!inhaled!or!swallowed!or!come!into!contact!with!the!skin.!
!     Disposal!of!Trash!and!Garbage.!Ask!your!landlord!what!you!should!do!with!trash!and!
garbage.!Refuse!is!collected!twice!weekly!by!employees!of!the!Department!of!Public!Works.!If!
you!live!on!campus!each!residence!hall!cluster!has!a!nearby!dumpster.!You!must!empty!your!
garbage!there.!If!you!live!in!a!dorm!with!a!kitchenette,!it!is!wise!to!keep!the!area!clean.!Wipe!
down!the!appliances!after!use,!make!sure!that!you!do!your!dishes,!and!air!out!the!room!and!
spray!with!a!room!deodorizer.!U.S.!Americans!who!are!not!accustomed!to!foreign!foods!often!
find!the!different!seasonings!and!spices!strong.! !
!
V.   Recreation!
!     ! For!their!recreational!and!social!activities,!U.S.!Americans!are!likely!to!go!somewhere!
and!do!something.!They!do!not!sit!and!talk!with!friends!as!frequently!as!people!in!many!other!
countries!do.! !
!     One!of!the!most!outstanding!recreational!attractions!of!the!area!is!Pensacola!Beach,!
where!local!residents!as!well!as!visitors!enjoy!swimming,!fishing,!boating,!water!skiing,!and!
surfing.!The!beaches!are!open!all!year.!
!     Pensacola’s!colorful!heritage!is!easily!seen!in!the!landmarks!and!museums!located!in!the!
Pensacola!area.!Some!of!these!include:!Hispanic!Museum,!Pensacola!Historical!Museum,!
Transportation!Museum,!T.T.!Wentworth!Museum,!Fort!Pickens,!Fort!Barrancas,!Gulf!Island!
National!Seashore!Park,!Naval!Aviation!Museum,!Christ!Church,!Seville!Square,!and!many!
others.!
!     The!University!also!has!a!Recreation!and!Sports!Program,!which!is!available!to!all!
students.!Many!international!students!have!participated!in!the!past.!If!you!would!like!further!



                                                                                         46
information,!contact!the!Office!of!Recreation,!Bldg.!72,!or!call!474"2586.!Sports!include!soccer,!
tennis,!volleyball,!swimming,!fencing,!and!much!more.! !
!     You!should!check!the!listings!in!the!University!and!local!newspapers!for!concerts!by!the!
Pensacola!Symphony!orchestra,!plays!by!the!Pensacola!Little!Theater,!exhibits!and!workshops!
by!the!Pensacola!Art!Center,!and!foreign!films!and!art!exhibits!at!the!Pensacola!Museum!of!Art.!
!     The!Student!Activities!Center!is!located!in!the!Commons!Building.!The!telephone!number!
is!474"2406.!This!office!has!information!about!student!organizations,!concerts,!dances,!and!
other!performances!at!the!University.!
         !
         !
VI. Activities!for!Spouses!and!Children!
!
SPOUSES!
!   The!spouses!of!international!students!are!sometimes!discouraged!by!the!fact!that!they!
are!left!alone!for!such!long!hours!with!nothing!to!do.!It!can!be!improved!somewhat!if!the!
spouse!has!the!opportunity!to!participate!in!some!activities!of!his/her!own!and!to!meet!some!
people.!It!is!quite!possible,!for!a!spouse!who!can!manage!some!English!and!who!is!interested,!
to!become!extremely!involved!in!educational!and!social!activities!in!Pensacola.!Here!are!some!
possibilities:!
!     ! The!International!Women’s!Club,!an!organization!of!international!and!U.S.!American!
women.!For!information,!call!455"4876.!
!     ! The!Pensacola!Public!Library!has!a!number!of!branches:!
              ! Headquarters!         !        200!W.!Gregory! !        435"1760!
                  Reference!Service!!          !        !          !    435"1763!
              ! Belvedere!            !                   th
                                               5740!N.!9 !Ave.! !       476"3969!
              ! Milton! !             !        805!Alabama!St.! !       623"5565!
              ! Gulf!Breeze!          !        1060!Shoreline!Dr.! !    932"5166!
!     ! The!Library!offers!services!to!children!such!as:!A!Summer!Reading!Session,!a!story!
hour!once!a!week,!films!on!Saturday,!and!art!and!crafts!sessions.!A!library!card!may!be!
obtained!by!showing!some!sort!of!identification!of!your!present!home!address.!If!you!do!not!
have!a!driver’s!license,!then!a!bill!from!Gulf!Power!or!a!checking!account!in!Pensacola!will!
suffice.!The!card!is!good!for!one!year!and!may!be!used!at!any!one!of!the!branches.!Books!may!
also!be!returned!to!any!one!of!the!branches.!Call!the!main!office!for!further!information.!
!
            a. Child!Care!Center!(on"campus)!telephone!number!is!474"2195.!The!Center!is!
                open!from!7:00!a.m.!to!5:30!p.m.!Monday!through!Thursday!and!7:00!a.m.!to!
                5:00!p.m.!on!Fridays!during!the!school!session.!It!serves!the!children!of!faculty,!
                staff,!students,!and!alumni!from!6!months!to!5!years!of!age;!although!during!the!
                summer!session!they!will!take!children!up!to!10!years!of!age.!It!is!wise!to!
                register!as!there!is!usually!a!long!waiting!list.!
            b. Volunteer!Work!is!available!through!the!hospitals!in!Pensacola!(see!listings!
                under!health!care).!In!addition,!Volunteer!UWF!office!is!located!in!Bldg.!19!and!
                is!an!excellent!resource!for!volunteer!opportunities!(474"3115).!


                                                                                         47
            c. Take!some!courses.!Many!international!wives!here!want!to!study.!Spouses!may!
               take!courses!which!are!avocational!or!recreational!in!nature.! ! However,!
               spouses!may!not!engage!in!full!time!study.! ! !
            d. The!Instructional!Media!Center,!Building!37,!has!video!tapes!and!films!to!be!
               viewed!there!on!a!first!come,!first!serve!basis.!
            e. Television!is!a!good!aid!to!learning!English.!Children’s!programs!such!as!
               “Sesame!Street”!and!“Dora!the!Explorer”!are!usually!good!for!beginners.!
            f. Physical!fitness!has!become!a!U.S.!American!obsession.!You!will!find!under!
               “Health!Clubs”!in!the!yellow!pages,!a!list!of!available!centers!that!have!exercise!
               equipment,!saunas,!Jacuzzis,!etc.!Many!offer!specials!for!newcomers.!Be!sure!to!
               check!with!the!University!Recreation!Office!as!they!offer!aerobic!classes,!free!
               weights,!machine!weights,!sauna,!indoor!swimming!for!free!to!all!UWF!students.!
               Discounts!can!be!applied!to!dependents!of!students.!
CHILDREN!
            a. Pre"schools!and!day!care!centers!(for!children!younger!than!five,!the!age!at!
               which!a!child!begins!kindergarten).!You!will!find!a!number!of!pre"schools!listed!
               in!the!yellow!pages!of!the!telephone!directory!under!“Day!Nurseries!and!
               Schools—Nursery!and!Kindergarten—Academic”.!These!schools!vary!
               considerably!with!respect!to!cost,!philosophy!of!instruction,!pupil"teacher!ratio,!
               and!schedule.!Generally,!a!pre"school!has!shorter!sessions!where!children!can!
               receive!care!while!their!parents!are!otherwise!occupied.!
            b. Public!schools!(for!children!five!and!older).!Public!schools!in!the!U.S.!provide!
               free!education!for!children!between!the!ages!of!5!and!18.!Schools!in!Pensacola!
               are!divided!into!three!levels:!elementary!schools—kindergarten!through!5th!
               grade!(ages!5!to!10);!junior!high!schools—6th!through!8th!grade!(ages!11!to!13);!
               and!senior!high!schools—9th!through!12th!grade!(ages!14!to!18).!
               ! !         To!register,!a!child!must!be!5!years!old!on!September!15!of!the!year!
               he!or!she!enters!kindergarten,!or!6!years!old!to!enter!the!first!grade.!It!is!not!
               necessary!for!a!student!to!know!English!in!order!to!enter!the!Pensacola!public!
               school!system,!but!there!are!not!foreign!language!teachers!at!the!elementary!
               school!level.! !
               ! !         In!order!to!register!your!child,!the!school!will!need!a!transcript!of!
               grades!from!schools!previously!attended!and!a!birth!certificate!or!other!
               identification!of!the!grade!level!at!which!the!child!should!be!placed.!Children!
               usually!attend!the!public!school!nearest!their!place!of!residence.!To!find!out!
               which!public!school!is!nearest!to!your!place!of!residence,!call!the!Myrtle!Grove!
               Instructional!Center!at!456"8631.!However,!different!schools!offer!different!
               kinds!of!programs,!and!children!may!wish!to!attend!a!school!other!that!the!
               closest!one.!To!find!out!about!the!programs!offered!by!the!various!public!
               schools,!call!the!Assistant!Superintendent!for!Curriculum!at!432"6121.! !!
            c. Babysitting.!A!babysitter!is!a!person!whom!you!pay!to!stay!with!and!care!for!
               your!children!for!a!given!period!of!time!while!you!are!away!from!your!home!for!
               some!reason.!Babysitters!usually!receive!between!$6!and!$10!per!hour.!Ask!
               friends!for!recommendations!or!check!under!the!classified!ads!in!the!paper.!


                                                                                         48
           d. Safety.!Cleaning!products!in!the!U.S.!(e.g.,!laundry!detergent,!floor!and!car!
              waxes,!oven!cleaners,!etc.)!may!be!different!from!those!you!are!accustomed!to!
              using.!Cleaning!products!are!usually!harmful!and!can!be!fatal!if!not!used!
              properly.!They!are!particularly!dangerous!for!children,!who!may!play!with!them!
              or!eat!them!if!the!products!are!left!within!reach.!Good!safety!tips!are:!
                           i. Keep!harmful!products!where!your!children!cannot!reach!them.!
                              Simple!things!like!detergent!are!poisonous!if!eaten.!
                          ii. Carefully!read!the!directions!and!warning!on!the!label!of!
                              anything!you!use.!The!label!will!tell!you!how!dangerous!the!
                              product!is,!and!what!to!do!it!someone!accidentally!eats!it!or!is!
                              burned!by!it.!This!information!is!often!incomprehensible!even!to!
                              U.S.!Americans.!If!you!do!not!understand!it,!get!someone!to!
                              translate!it!for!you!before!you!use!the!product.!
                         iii. If!your!child!has!played!with!or!eaten!something!you!think!might!
                              be!harmful!to!them,!follow!the!directions!on!the!label!of!the!
                              product.!Sometimes!you!should!not!make!the!child!vomit!what!
                              he/she!has!eaten.!Call!Poison!Control!(1"800"282"3171).!It!is!
                              open!24!hours!a!day!at!no!charge.!
                         iv. Other!things!which!can!be!harmful!to!children!are!certain!
                              household!plants,!which!may!have!poisonous!leaves!or!berries.!
                              Watch!out!for!plastic!bags!especially!ones!that!wrap!the!clothes!
                              from!the!dry!cleaners.!Small!children!can!smother!if!they!pull!a!
                              plastic!bag!over!their!heads.!
!
VII. Cars!and!Bicycles!
!    ! It!may!seem!to!you!that!everyone!here!needs!a!car!and!has!one.!Owning!a!car!is!
expensive!and!can!be!very!troublesome!because!cars!often!need!to!be!repaired,!and!
automobile!repairs!are!costly!and!frequently!unreliable.!Cars!require!expenditures!for!license!
plates,!insurance,!and!fuel.!Unless!you!have!ample!supply!of!money,!it!is!advisable!to!be!
cautious!about!buying!a!car.!
           a. Driver’s!License!
           !      Anyone!living!in!the!state!of!Florida!and!driving!a!car!here!must!have!a!Florida!
           driver’s!license.!An!international!driver’s!license!is!not!valid!for!more!than!30!days!
           after!you!take!up!residence!in!Florida.!
           !      To!get!a!Florida!license,!you!must!go!to!the!Division!of!Driver’s!License!
           located!at!100!Stumpfield!Road!(484"5015).!You!will!need!to!present!your!passport,!
           visa!and!I"94!card!when!you!apply.!You!will!be!required!to!take!a!written!
           examination!concerning!driving!laws!and!practices,!and!you!may!also!be!asked!to!
           drive!your!car!while!accompanied!by!a!driver’s!license!examiner.!Before!going!to!
           take!the!driver’s!license!exam,!you!should!study!the!Florida!Driver’s!Handbook.!The!
           booklet!contains!all!the!information!needed!to!pass!the!written!part!of!the!test.!This!
           is!available!at!the!Division!office.!The!hours!are!7:00!a.m.!to!6:00!p.m.,!Monday!
           through!Friday.!



                                                                                         49
!       Florida!laws,!and!the!laws!of!every!other!state,!prohibit!the!operation!of!any!
kind!of!motor!vehicle,!while!under!the!influence!of!alcoholic!beverage!or!any!other!
drug.!Driving!Under!the!Influence!(DUI)!is!a!very!serious!offense,!even!if!you!are!not!
involved!in!a!motor!vehicle!crash.!Conviction!of!a!DUI!offence!will!mean!suspension!
of!your!license,!cost!you!hundreds!of!dollars!in!fines!and!court!costs,!possibly!send!
you!to!jail,!and!can!impact!on!your!staying!in!this!country.!Even!though!you!will!see!
and!hear!of!many!people!who!drink!and!drive,!it!is!not!smart,!safe,!or!legal.!
!       Florida!law!prohibits!the!consumption!of,!or!the!transporting!of,!any!kind!of!
alcoholic!beverage!in!an!open!container!that!can!be!drunk!from!in!motor!vehicles.!
This!law!applies!to!the!operator!of!the!vehicle!as!well!as!any!passengers!in!the!
vehicle.!Violations!will!cost!you!dollars!in!fines,!and!if!you!are!the!operator,!it!will!
add!points!to!your!driver’s!license.!If!you!want!to!transport!alcoholic!beverages!in!
your!vehicle,!do!not!open!the!container!or!break!the!seal,!and!if!appropriate,!keep!
the!beverage!in!the!locked!trunk!of!your!car.!
!       Florida!law!requires!the!operator!of!a!motor!vehicle!as!well!as!any!passengers!
in!the!front!seat!of!the!vehicle!to!buckle!up!their!seat!belt!(sometimes!referred!to!as!
a!safety!belt)!at!all!times.!Violation!of!this!law!can!cost!you!dollars!in!fines.!
Numerous!studies!and!research!projects!have!proven!that!buckling!up!your!seat!
belt!greatly!improves!your!chances!of!avoiding!serious!injury!to!yourself!if!you!are!
involved!in!a!motor!vehicle!crash.!Always!buckle!up!for!your!own!protection!and!
insist!that!your!passengers!buckle!up!too.!
!       IT!IS!VERY!IMPORTANT!TO!LEARN!AND!FOLLOW!TRAFFIC!REGULATIONS.!
Regulations!concerning!driving!speed,!turning!and!parking!are!used!to!control!
automobile!and!bicycle!traffic!in!the!U.S.!Most!people!generally!adhere!to!those!
regulations,!and!the!regulations!are!enforced!by!the!police.!Violations!of!traffic!
regulations!are!punished!by!fines,!jail!sentences,!and/or!loss!of!driving!privileges.!
Cars!which!are!parked!in!violation!of!regulations!may!be!towed!away,!and!the!
owner!required!to!pay!a!fine,!towing!costs,!and!storage!costs.!
!       In!some!countries,!driving!regulations!are!not!as!detailed!or!as!strictly!
enforced!as!they!are!here,!and!driving!habits!may!be!shaped!more!by!competition!
with!other!drivers!than!by!laws.!In!still!other!countries,!the!laws!regulating!traffic!
are!detailed!but!much!different!from!the!ones!in!the!U.S.! ! People!who!have!
learned!to!drive!under!other!circumstances,!may!easily!but!unintentionally!violate!
driving!regulations!here!and!then!be!penalized!for!their!violation.!
b. Buying!a!Car!
!     You!will!probably!be!buying!a!used!car!either!from!a!car!dealer!or!from!a!
private!individual!who!has!advertised!a!car!for!sale.!In!any!case!you!should!have!
with!you!a!U.S.!American!acquaintance!that!is!both!knowledgeable!about!cars!and!
skeptical!by!nature.!Such!person!could!help!you!evaluate!both!the!condition!of!the!
car!and!the!claims!made!by!the!person!who!is!trying!to!sell!it.!These!evaluations!are!
essential!because!buying!a!car,!especially!a!used!one,!can!be!very!tricky.!When!you!
buy!a!car,!the!“certificate!of!ownership”!or!“certificate!of!title”!must!be!transferred!
to!you!from!the!previous!owner.!
Automobile!registration.!If!you!buy!a!car,!you!must!register!it!and!obtain!license!


                                                                               50
           plates!for!it.!This!is!done!at!the!Tag!Office!in!the!Court!House!on!the!corner!of!
           Palafox!and!Government!Street!(436"5820).!Requirements!for!registering!a!car!vary!
           depending!on!whether!the!car!is!new!or!used!and,!if!used,!how!old!it!is.!To!find!out!
           what!you!have!to!do!to!register!a!particular!car,!visit!the!Tag!Office.!
           Automobile!Insurance.!IT!IS!ESSENTIAL!AND!THE!LAW!REQUIRES!YOU!TO!HAVE!AT!
           LEAST!MINIMAL!INSURANCE!COVERAGE!IF!YOU!OWN!A!CAR!AS!YOU!ARE!
           FINANCIALLY!RESPONSIBLE!IF!YOU!INJURE!ANOTHER!PERSON!OR!DAMAGE!
           SOMEONE!ELSE’S!PROPERTY.!
           !      Liability!Insurance!is!the!most!basic!type.!It!protects!you!if!your!car!kills!or!
           injures!someone!else!or!damages!someone!else’s!property.!
           !      Collision!Insurance!protects!your!car!in!case!of!collision!with!another!car.!
           Comprehensive!Insurance!covers!losses!caused!by!storms,!thieves,!and!vandals.!
           !      In!the!yellow!pages!section!of!the!telephone!directory,!you!will!find!a!long!list!
           of!insurance!agents!under!the!heading!“insurance”.!Unless!a!friend!can!recommend!
           a!reliable!agent!to!you,!you!should!talk!to!at!least!two!agents!about!your!insurance!
           needs.!The!amount!of!insurance!you!buy!for!your!car!should!depend!on!its!value.!
           Insurance!rates!vary!from!company!to!company,!and!they!depend!also!on!the!value!
           of!the!car,!the!amount!it!is!driven,!the!age!of!the!drivers!and!the!past!driving!
           records!of!the!drivers.!
           c. Bicycles!
           !      In!the!recent!past,!bicycling!has!become!extremely!popular!as!a!sport!and!
           means!of!transportation!in!the!U.S.!Therefore,!many!of!the!bicycle!for!sale!here!are!
           very!elaborate!ten"speed!racing!models.!If!you!are!using!a!bicycle!for!transportation!
           only,!you!may!not!need!such!an!expensive!model,!depending!on!how!far!you!have!
           to!travel!and!how!many!hills!you!have!to!climb.!Used!bicycles!are!advertised!in!the!
           Voyager!and!Pensacola!News!Journal.!If!you!are!unfamiliar!with!bicycles,!try!to!find!
           someone!who!knows!about!them!to!examine!a!used!bicycle!for!you.!You!do!not!
           have!to!register!your!bike!with!the!city!of!Pensacola!or!with!the!University.!
           !      It!is!very!important!to!lock!your!bicycle!securely!whenever!you!leave!it.!Ask!
           the!person!who!sells!you!a!bicycle!to!recommend!an!effective!lock!for!it.!You!should!
           lock!your!bicycle!into!a!bicycle!rack.!
           !      UWF!also!offers!a!“Yellow!Bike”!program!where!students!can!use!marked!
           yellow!bikes!for!free!around!campus!for!no!charge.! ! When!you!are!finished!with!
           the!bike,!you!leave!it!at!the!nearest!bike!rack!for!another!student!to!use.!
           !
VIII. Getting!Along!with!U.S.!Americans!
!     ! Like!any!other!society,!U.S.!American!society!includes!people!who!are!friendly!people!
and!who!are!not,!ones!who!are!intelligent!and!ones!who!are!not,!and!so!on.!Also,!U.S.!
American!society!includes!people!representing!large!numbers!of!ethnic,!religious,!
socioeconomic,!age,!occupational,!and!other!types!of!groups.!It!includes!a!number!of!people!
referred!to!as!the!“counter"culture.”!These!people,!many!of!whom!are!university!students,!
profess!a!set!of!values!counter!to!those!they!see!in!the!society!at!large.!People!in!any!of!these!
various!groups!are!likely!to!have!ideas!and!opinions!that!differ!from!those!people!in!other!



                                                                                          51
groups.!
!     Even!with!this!diversity,!it!is!possible!to!mention!certain!characteristics!which,!in!general,!
describe!attitudes!and!practices!that!are!common!among!U.S.!Americans!and!that!tend!to!
distinguish!U.S.!Americans!from!people!who!have!grown!up!in!other!cultures.!Keep!in!mind!
that!the!following!remarks!are!generalizations,!and!that!you!will!find!individuals!who!are!
exceptions!to!any!or!all!of!them.!
     a. Notable!Characteristics!of!U.S.!Americans!
          i. Individuals.!U.S.!Americans!generally!believe!that!the!ideal!person!is!an!
              autonomous,!self"reliant!individual.!Most!U.S.!Americans!see!themselves!as!
              separate!individuals,!not!as!representatives!of!a!family,!community,!or!other!group.!
              They!dislike!being!dependent!on!other!people,!or!having!others!depend!on!them.!
              Some!people!from!other!countries!view!this!attitude!as!“selfishness”.!Others!view!
              this!as!a!healthy!freedom!from!the!constraints!of!ties!to!family,!clan!or!social!class.!
         ii. Informality.!U.S.!Americans!are!taught!that!“all!men!are!created!equal”.!While!they!
              continually!violate!that!idea!in!some!aspects!of!life,!in!others!they!adhere!to!it.!
              They!treat!each!other!in!very!informal!ways,!for!example,!even!in!the!presence!of!
              great!differences!in!age!or!social!standing.!From!the!point!of!view!of!some!people!
              from!other!cultures,!this!kind!of!behavior!reflects!“lack!of!respect.”!From!the!point!
              of!view!of!others,!it!reflects!a!healthy!lack!of!concern!for!social!rituals.!
        iii. Limited!“friendships.”!Friendships!among!U.S.!Americans!tend!to!be!shorter!and!
              less!intense!than!those!among!people!from!many!other!cultures!because!they!are!
              taught!to!be!self"reliant,!because!they!live!in!a!very!mobile!society,!and!for!many!
              other!reasons!as!well,!U.S.!Americans!tend!to!avoid!deep!involvements!with!other!
              people.!Furthermore,!U.S.!Americans!tend!to!“compartmentalize”!their!friendships,!
              having!their!“friends!at!work,”!“friends!at!school,”!a!“tennis!friend,”!and!so!on.!The!
              result!of!all!this!is!sometimes!viewed!by!foreigners!as!an!“inability!to!be!friends.”!
              Other!times!it!is!seen!as!a!normal!way!to!retain!personal!happiness!in!a!mobile,!
              ever"changing!society.!
              !    ! These!remarks!are!not!intended!to!discourage!international!students!from!
              attempting!to!establish!friendly!relationships!with!the!U.S.!Americans.!They!are!
              only!intended!to!point!out!that!U.S.!Americans’!ideas!about!friendship!might!be!
              different!from!ideas!about!friendship!that!predominate!elsewhere.!
        iv. Time!Consciousness.!U.S.!Americans!place!considerable!value!on!punctuality.!They!
              tend!to!organize!their!activities!by!means!of!schedules.!As!a!result,!they!may!seem!
              hurried,!always!running!from!one!thing!to!the!next,!and!not!able!to!relax!and!enjoy!
              themselves.!International!observers!sometimes!see!this!as!being!“ruled!by!the!
              clock.”!Other!times!they!see!it!as!a!helpful!way!of!assuring!that!things!get!done.!
         v. Materialism.!“Success”!in!U.S.!Americans!society!is!often!marked!by!the!amount!of!
              money!or!the!quantity!of!material!goods!a!person!is!able!to!accumulate.!A!person!
              accumulates!money!and!goods!by!means!of!such!valued!qualities!as!hard!work,!
              cleverness,!and!persistence.!Some!foreigners!see!all!this!as!a!“lack!of!appreciation!
              for!the!spiritual!or!human!things!of!life.”!Others!recognize!it!as!a!way!of!assuring!a!
              comparatively!high!standard!of!living!in!the!country.!
            !


                                                                                           52
b. The!“Communicative!Styles”!of!U.S.!Americans!
        !!       The!preceding!paragraphs!concerned!some!values!that!generally!prevail!
        among!U.S.!Americans.!Another!way!of!describing!differences!between!people!from!
        diverse!cultural!backgrounds,!besides!comparing!their!values,!is!comparing!their!
        communicative!styles.!According!to!the!communications!scholar,!Dean!Barnlund,!
        (writing!in!Public!and!Private!Self!in!Japan!and!the!United!States),!“communicative!
        style”!refers!to:!
                          ! The!topics!people!prefer!to!discuss,!
                          ! People’s!favorite!forms!of!verbal!interaction!(ritual,!repartee,!
                             argument,!self!disclosure),!
                          ! The!depth!of!involvement!people!seek!from!each!other,!
                          ! Communication!channels!people!tend!to!rely!on!(vocal,!verbal,!
                             physical),!and!
                          ! The!level!of!meaning!to!which!people!are!generally!attuned!(the!
                             factual!or!the!emotional!content!of!messages).!
        !!       When!people!with!differing!communicative!styles!interact,!they!frequently!
        feel!ill"at"ease,!and!they!often!midjudge!or!misunderstand!each!other.!To!help!
        understand!why!that!happens,!and!to!try!to!reduce!the!communication!problems!
        that!arise!when!it!does!happen,!it!is!helpful!if!foreigners!(anywhere,!not!just!in!the!
        U.S.)!know!something!about!the!communicative!style!of!the!local!people,!and!the!
        way!it!compares!with!their!own!communicative!style.!With!that!knowledge,!the!
        foreigners!will!be!better!able!to!understand!what!is!happening!when!they!are!
        dealing!with!the!local!people!and!will!know!some!of!the!ways!in!which!the!local!
        people!are!likely!to!misunderstand!or!misjudge!them.!
        !!       Here!are!some!generalizations!(subject!to!exceptions)!about!the!
        communicative!style!of!U.S.!Americans:!
    i. Preferred!topics.!In!casual!conversation!(what!they!call!“small!talk”),!U.S.!
         Americans!prefer!to!talk!about!the!weather,!sports,!jobs,!people!they!both!know,!
         or!past!experiences,!especially!one!they!have!in!common.!As!they!grow!up,!most!
         U.S.!Americans!are!warned!not!to!discuss!politics!or!religion,!at!least!not!with!
         people!they!do!not!know!well,!because!politics!and!religion!are!considered!
         controversial!topics.!Sex,!bodily!functions,!and!perceived!personal!inadequacies!
         are!considered!very!personal!topics,!and!are!likely!to!be!discussed!only!between!
         people!who!know!each!other!very!well.!(Younger!people!generally!discuss!sex!
         more!freely!than!older!people!do.)!
      !        By!contrast,!people!in!some!other!cultures!are!taught!to!believe!that!politics!
      and/or!religion!are!good!conversation!topics,!and!they!may!have!different!ideas!
      about!what!topics!are!too!“personal”!to!discuss!with!others.! !
   ii. Verbal!interaction.!In!the!typical!conversation!between!U.S.!Americans,!no!one!
         talks!for!very!long!at!a!time.!Participants!in!conversation!“take!turns”!frequently,!
         usually!after!the!speaker!has!spoken!only!a!few!sentences.!U.S.!Americans!prefer!
         to!avoid!arguments!if!argument!is!unavoidable;!they!prefer!it!to!be!restrained,!
         carried!on!in!a!normal!conversational!tone!and!volume.!U.S.!Americans!are!



                                                                                     53
       generally!rather!impatient!with!“ritual”!conversational!exchanges.!(Only!very!few!
       of!them!are!common:!“How!are!you?”!“Fine!thank!you,!how!are!you?”!“Fine.”!“It!
       was!very!nice!to!meet!you.”!“I!hope!to!see!you!again.”!
    !       ! People!form!other!countries!may!be!more!accustomed!to!speaking!and!
    listening!for!longer!periods!when!they!are!in!a!conversation;!they!may!be!
    accustomed!to!more!ritual!interchanges!(about!the!health!of!family!members,!for!
    example)!than!U.S.!Americans!are.!They!may!enjoy!arguing,!even!vigorous!arguing,!
    of!a!kind!that!U.S.!Americans!are!likely!to!find!unsettling.! ! ! !
iii. Depth!of!involvement!preferred.!U.S.!Americans!do!not!generally!expect!very!
       much!personal!involvement!from!conversational!partners.!“Small!talk”!–!without!
       long!silences,!which!provoke!uneasiness!–!is!enough!to!keep!matters!going!
       smoothly.!It!is!only!with!very!close!friends!(or!with!complete!strangers!whom!they!
       do!not!expect!to!see!again)!that!U.S.!Americans!generally!expect!to!discuss!
       personal!topics.!
       !    Some!people!from!other!countries!prefer!even!less!personal!involvement!than!
       U.S.!Americans!do!and!rely!more!on!ritual!interchanges.!Others!come!from!
       countries!where!much!more!personal!involvement!is!sought!as!one!wants!to!learn!
       as!much!as!possible!about!another!person!and!keep!the!possibility!of!developing!a!
       relationship!of!mutual!interdependence.!
iv. Channels!preferred.!The!ideal!among!U.S.!Americans!is!to!be!somewhat!verbally!
       adept,!speaking!in!a!moderate!tone,!using!relatively!few!and!restrained!gestures!of!
       the!arms!and!hands.!They!do!not!touch!very!often.!By!contrast,!others!might!prefer!
       even!quieter!conversation,!less!talking,!and!even!more!restrained!gestures.!OR!
       they!might!be!accustomed!to!louder!voices,!many!people!talking!at!once,!vigorous!
       use!of!hands!and!arms!to!convey!meanings!or!add!emphasis,!and/or!more!
       touching!between!conversation!partners.!
 v. Level!of!meaning!emphasized.!U.S.!Americans!are!generally!taught!to!believe!in!
       the!“scientific!method”!of!understanding!the!world!around!them,!so!they!tend!to!
       look!for!specific!facts!and!physical!or!quantifiable!evidence!to!support!viewpoints.!
       (Underlying!this!search!for!facts!is!the!assumption!that!there!are!“truths”!about!
       people!and!nature!that!can!be!discovered!by!means!of!“objective”!inquiry!that!is!
       carried!out!by!trained!people!using!“scientific”!means!of!measurement!or!
       observation.)!
       !    Compared!to!U.S.!Americans,!people!from!some!other!countries!might!pay!
       more!attention!to!the!emotional!content!or!the!human!feelings!aspects!of!a!
       message,!and!be!less!concerned!with!what!U.S.!Americans!would!call!“facts”.!(They!
       may!not!assume!the!existence!of!an!objective!“truth,”!but!may!suppose!that!
       “facts”!are!relative!depending!on!who!is!observing!them.!
       !    Many!misjudgments!and!misunderstandings!can!arise!from!interactions!
       between!people!who!have!different!communicative!styles.!Here!are!some!
       examples:!
         ! International!visitors!in!the!U.S.!might!hear!little!but!“small!talk”!among!U.S.!
              Americans,!and!derive!the!erroneous!conclusion!that!U.S.!Americans!are!not!
              intellectually!capable!of!anything!more!than!simple!talk!about!such!subjects!


                                                                                  54
                as!the!weather,!sports,!teachers!or!their!own!social!lives.!The!conclusion!that!
                U.S.!Americans!are!intellectually!inferior!is!also!reached!by!many!people!who!
                regard!argument!as!a!favorite!form!of!interaction!and!who!find!that!U.S.!
                Americans!are!often!not!very!adept!are!arguing.!
            ! Responding!to!people!who!customarily!speak!little!and!who!rely!heavily!on!
                ritual!conversation,!U.S.!Americans!might!use!labels!“shy,”!“too!formal,”!or!
                “too!polite.”!
            ! Vigorous!arguing!(with!raised!voices!and!much!use!of!hands!and!arms,!and!
                perhaps!more!than!one!person!talking!at!a!time)!of!the!kind!that!is!“natural”!
                to!some!people!may!alarm!U.S.!Americans,!who!expect!violence,!or!at!least!
                long"lasting!anger,!to!follow!from!loud!disagreements.! !
            ! What!U.S.!Americans!might!regard!favorably!as!“keeping!cool”!–!that!is,!not!
                being!drawn!into!an!argument,!not!raising!the!voice,!looking!always!for!the!
                “facts”!–!might!be!seen!by!others!as!coldness!and!a!sort!of!lack!of!humanness.!
                Conversely,!U.S.!Americans!are!likely!to!see!those!who!do!not!“keep!cool”!as!
                being!“too!emotional”.!
            ! Embarrassment!or!uneasiness!almost!always!results!when!someone!raises!a!
                discussion!topic!that!the!other!person!thinks!is!inappropriate!for!the!
                particular!setting!or!relationship.!
            ! U.S.!Americans!are!likely!to!view!a!very!articulate!person!with!some!suspicion.!
                These!are!but!a!few!of!the!many!misjudgments!that!arise!between!U.S.!
                Americans!and!people!in!the!U.S.!from!other!countries.!It!can!be!very!helpful!
                to!be!aware!of!the!differences!in!communicative!style!that!produce!them.!
                Talking!about!differences!in!communicative!style,!when!such!a!difference!
                seems!to!be!causing!problems,!is!usually!a!good!way!to!reduce!the!negative!
                effects!of!the!differences.!
c. Guidelines!for!Practical!Situations!
        The!comments!in!the!preceding!section!are!very!general.!This!section!provides!some!
        more!specific!information!about!behavior!that!U.S.!Americans!usually!expect!in!
        certain!situations.!
    i. Shaking!hands.!Men!usually!shake!hands!with!each!other!the!first!time!they!meet.!
         Men!usually!do!not!shake!hands!with!women!unless!the!woman!extends!her!hand!
         first.!Women!do!not!usually!shake!hands!with!each!other.!
      !        After!the!first!meeting,!shaking!hands!is!relatively!rare.!If!someone!offers!his!or!
      her!hand!to!you,!though,!you!should!shake!it.!In!general,!U.S.!Americans!avoid!
      physical!contact!with!each!other.!To!them,!physical!contact!frequently!connotes!
      sexual!attraction!or!aggressiveness.!
   ii. Use!of!names!and!titles.!First!names!are!used!in!the!U.S.!more!frequently!than!
         elsewhere.!People!may!call!each!other!by!their!first!names!immediately!after!they!
         have!met.!These!general!rules!apply:!
           1. Address!people!of!your!own!approximate!age!and!status!by!the!first!name.!
               This!would!apply!to!fellow!students!and!neighbors.!
           2. If!the!other!person!is!clearly!older!than!you,!you!should!use!Mr.,!Mrs.,!Miss,!or!



                                                                                        55
          Ms.!and!the!last!name.!For!example,!you!would!address!Marlon!Brando!as!“Mr.!
          Brando.”!If!the!older!person!asks!you!to!use!his!or!her!first!name,!do!so.!The!
          older!person!will!probably!address!you!by!your!first!name!form!the!beginning.!
          (A!note!on!“Ms.”!(pronounced!“Mizz”):!it!is!increasingly!used!for!both!
          unmarried!and!married!females.)!
      3. If!the!other!person!has!a!title!such!as!“Ambassador”!or!“Dean,”!use!the!title!
          and!the!last!name.!For!example,!you!would!address!Senator!Edwards!Kennedy!
          as!“Senator!Kennedy.”!A!faculty!member!can!be!addressed!as!“Professor,”!
          whether!he/she!has!the!rank!of!assistant!professor,!associate!professor!or!full!
          professor.!“Mister”!or!“Ms.”!is!equally!acceptable.!Again,!the!other!person!
          might!ask!you!to!address!him/her!by!the!first!name,!and!you!should!abide!by!
          that!wish.!
      4. U.S.!Americans!do!not!use!a!title!followed!by!a!first!name.!For!example,!you!
          would!not!address!Elizabeth!Taylor!as!“Miss!Elizabeth,”!but!as!“Miss!Taylor”!or,!
          if!she!asked!you!to,!as!“Elizabeth.”!
      5. The!use!of!“nicknames”!is!fairly!common!among!U.S.!Americans.!A!nickname!is!
          not!the!person’s!real!name,!but!a!name!assigned!to!her/him!because!of!certain!
          physical!characteristics,!behavior!patterns,!or!some!other!factor.!International!
          students!often!get!nicknames!if!their!own!names!seem!long,!unpronounceable,!
          or!just!unusual,!to!U.S.!Americans.!For!example,!a!student!whose!name!is!
          Nakagawa!might!come!to!be!known!as!“Naka”.!Being!called!by!a!nickname!is!
          not!usually!uncomplimentary.!On!the!contrary,!it!may!indicate!that!you!are!
          viewed!with!respect!and!even!affection.!
      6. If!you!are!in!doubt!about!what!to!call!a!person,!ask!the!person,!“What!shall!I!
          call!you?”!
      7. U.S.!Americans!will!sometimes!be!confused!about!what!to!call!you.!If!you!see!
          that!a!person!does!not!know!what!to!call!you,!tell!him/her.!Say,!“You!can!call!
          me! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! .”!
      !     !          The!U.S.!Americans’!ready!use!of!first!names!may!make!it!appear!to!
      you!that!they!are!oblivious!to!differences!in!age!and!social!status.!They!are!not.!
      There!are!subtle!differences!in!vocabulary!and!manner,!depending!on!the!
      relationship!between!people!involved.!For!example,!a!U.S.!American!is!less!likely!
      to!use!slang!or!obscenities!when!speaking!to!a!person!who!is!older,!whose!social!
      standing!is!higher,!and/or!who!he/she!does!not!know!very!well.!
iii. Ritual!Greetings.!When!two!people!are!first!introduced,!the!dialogue!goes,!“How!
     do!you!do?”!“Fine,!thank!you.!How!are!you?”!“Fine,!thanks.”!
      ! After!the!first!meeting,!there!are!two!kinds!of!greetings.!The!more!formal!is!
      “Good!Morning,”!“Good!Afternoon,”!etc.!The!less!formal!is!simply!“Hello”!or!“Hi”.!
      Any!of!these!may!be!followed!by!“How!are!you?”!The!answer!is!usually!“Fine,”!
      whether!you!are!fine!or!not.!
      ! These!ritual!greetings!are!much!shorter!than!those!to!which!people!from!
      many!other!countries!are!accustomed.!People!from!countries!where!ritual!
      greetings!are!more!elaborate!may!have!a!negative!reaction!to!the!U.S.!Americans!
      custom,!thinking!that!it!reflects!coldness!and!lack!of!concern!for!other!people.!


                                                                                56
     !    ! The!U.S.!Americans!ritual!parting!remark,!“See!you!later,”!means!“Goodbye,”!
     and!does!not!mean!that!the!person!saying!it!has!a!specific!intention!to!see!you!
     later.!
iv. Visiting!U.S.!Americans.!You!will!probably!have!opportunities!to!visit!a!U.S.!
     American’s!home.!The!invitation!may!come!about!through!the!UWF!Friendship!
     Family!Program,!through!someone!you!have!met!in!class!or!elsewhere.!The!
     following!paragraphs!give!a!general!idea!of!the!behavior!that!is!appropriate!in!such!
     situations.!
     !    ! Your!prospective!host!will!phone!you,!speak!to!you!in!person,!or!send!you!a!
     written!invitation.!An!arrangement!made!by!telephone!is!expected!to!be!kept,!
     even!if!it!is!made!far!in!advance!of!the!actual!event.!A!written!invitation!will!
     include!the!date,!time,!place,!and!a!description!of!the!occasion.!If!at!the!bottom!of!
     the!invitation!it!says,!“R.S.V.P.”!(Respondez,!s’il!vous!plait),!you!should!notify!the!
     inviter!whether!or!not!you!plan!to!be!present.!If!it!says!“Regrets!only,”!you!should!
     notify!the!inviter!only!if!you!do!not!plan!to!be!present.!It!is!polite!to!notify!your!
     hostess!of!any!last!minute!change!of!plans!and!of!any!dietary!restrictions!you!have.!
     In!the!United!States!you!should!never!say!that!you!accept!an!invitation!unless!you!
     truly!intend!to!do!so.!
     !    ! If!you!do!not!know!what!clothing!would!be!appropriate!for!the!occasion,!
     simply!ask:!“What!should!I!wear?”!
     !    ! Punctuality!is!usually!essential,!especially!if!you!have!been!invited!for!a!meal!
     or!for!a!cocktail!party.!You!may!be!thought!inconsiderate!and!impolite!if!you!do!not!
     arrive!at!the!appointed!hour.!Again,!it!is!a!very!good!idea!to!notify!your!hostess!if!
     you!cannot!avoid!being!late.!
 !        ! Upon!arrival,!you!may!find!that!there!is!a!cocktail!hour!before!dinner.!During!
 this!period!hors"d’oeuvres!(small!appetizers,!usually!with!crackers)!and!cocktails!are!
 served.!You!will!usually!be!asked!what!type!of!drink!you!would!prefer.!You!may!have!
 an!alcoholic!or!non"alcoholic!cocktail.!If!you!would!prefer!a!non"alcoholic!beverage!
 and!none!is!offered,!it!is!acceptable!to!ask!your!host/hostess!for!one.!
 !        ! At!the!dinner!table,!if!there!is!ever!any!question!of!proper!manners,!simply!
 follow!the!example!of!your!host.!If!you!have!any!dietary!restrictions,!you!should!
 inform!your!host/hostess!of!them!at!the!time!you!accept!the!invitation.!
 !        ! It!is!never!necessary!to!bring!a!gift!for!any!member!of!the!family,!unless!it!is!a!
 special!occasion!(such!as!a!birthday!or!an!important!holiday,!like!Christmas).!U.S.!
 Americans!do!not!usually!expect!gifts!from!their!guests!and!may!even!be!embarrassed!
 by!them.!If!you!have!visited!several!times,!you!may!wish!to!bring!a!small!token!of!
 appreciation!for!the!hostess.!Always!bring!a!small!gift!when!you!are!invited!as!a!house!
 guest!for!an!extended!visit.!If!you!do!wish!to!take!a!gift,!a!bouquet!of!flowers!or!a!box!
 of!candy!is!nearly!always!appropriate.!
 !        ! Unless!a!special!party!has!been!planned,!it!is!polite!to!leave!your!host’s!home!
 from!one!to!two!hours!after!dinner!is!completed.!If!it!is!very!late!when!you!finish!
 dinner,!leave!within!an!hour.!If!you!are!asked!to!stay!longer,!feel!free!to!do!so.! !
 !        ! It!is!never!a!bad!idea!to!write!a!thank!you!note!to!your!host/hostess!after!
 each!occasion.!An!informal!note!expressing!how!much!you!enjoyed!the!evening!and!


                                                                                     57
the!meal!is!sufficient.!While!it!is!not!a!bad!idea!to!write!a!thank!you!note,!it!is!not!
required!either.!A!telephone!call!expressing!appreciation!for!an!invitation!will!suffice.! !
!       ! These!informal!visits!are!for!the!pleasure!of!both!guests!and!the!hosts.!You!
should!feel!free!to!ask!for!anything!which!would!make!you!feel!more!comfortable.!If!
the!host/hostess!is!preparing!the!meal!by!himself/herself,!it!is!polite!to!ask!if!you!can!
help!her/him!with!any!preparations.!Guests!should!offer!their!help!in!cleaning!up!after!
dinner.!Your!hostess!will!tell!you!whether!she/he!needs!extra!help!or!not.!Always!
abide!by!her/his!wishes.!
v. Gifts.!In!different!societies!there!are!different!customs!concerning!the!giving!of!
   gifts.!Sometimes,!in!relationships!between!people!from!different!societies,!one!
   person!will!give!a!gift!when!the!other!person!did!not!expect!to!receive!one.!Or!no!
   gift!will!be!offered!when!one!was!expected.!Situations!such!as!this!can!cause!
   confusion!and!embarrassment.!Here!are!some!general!(i.e.,!subject!to!variation!
   and!exception)!ideas!about!gift"giving!customs!in!the!U.S.! ! Knowing!them!can!help!
   avoid!awkward!situations.! !
    1. To!whom!are!gifts!given?!As!a!rule,!gifts!are!given!to!relatives!and!close!friends.!
        They!are!sometimes!given!to!people!with!whom!one!has!a!casual!but!friendly!
        type!of!relationship,!such!as!a!host!or!hostess,!but!it!is!not!necessary!or!even!
        common!for!gifts!to!be!given!to!such!people.!Gifts!are!not!usually!given!to!
        teachers!or!others!who!hold!an!official!position.!The!offering!of!gifts!in!these!
        situations!is!sometimes!interpreted!as!an!effort,!possibly!improper,!to!gain!
        favorable!treatment!from!that!person.!
    2. When!are!gifts!given?!Christmas!is!the!only!national!gift"giving!day,!when!most!
        U.S.!Americans,!with!the!exception!of!adherents!of!non"Christian!religions,!
        give!gifts.!Otherwise,!gifts!are!given!on!occasions!which!are!special!to!the!
        recipient—birthdays,!graduation!from!high!school!or!college,!weddings,!and!
        child"births.!Gifts!are!sometimes!given!when!someone!has!a!new!house!or!is!
        moving!away.!Cards,!rather!than!gifts,!are!given!to!acquaintances!who!are!not!
        close!friends.!This!is!especially!true!at!Christmas,!when!it!is!common!for!
        people!to!send!a!card!to!most!of!their!acquaintances!and!business!or!school!
        colleagues.!
    3. What!gifts!are!appropriate?!Generally,!an!effort!is!made!to!select!a!gift!which!
        the!giver!knows!or!supposes!is!one!the!recipient!needs,!wants,!or!would!enjoy.!
        The!amount!spent!on!the!gift!is!something!the!giver!can!afford;!generally!it!is!
        not!expected!that!people!on!limited!budgets!will!spend!large!amounts!on!gifts.!
        Expensive!gifts!are!to!be!expected!only!when!the!people!involved!have!a!very!
        close!relationship!with!each!other.!
    4. How!are!gifts!acknowledged?!If!a!gift!is!opened!in!the!presence!of!the!giver!(as!
        is!often!done),!a!verbal!expression!of!thanks!is!appreciated.!If!a!gift!is!opened!
        in!the!absence!of!a!giver,!a!thank!you!note!should!be!sent.!The!note!should!
        make!specific!mention!of!the!particular!gift!that!has!been!sent.!
    !
    !
    !


                                                                                 58
vi. Time!Schedules.!
     1. Individuals!and!families.!In!general,!you!can!telephone!individuals!or!families!
        between!9:00!a.m.!and!9:00!p.m.!without!awakening!them.!U.S.!Americans!eat!
        breakfast!shortly!after!arising,!a!small!meal!or!sandwich!called!“lunch”!at!or!
        near!noon,!and!a!large!meal!called!“dinner”!or!“supper”!sometime!between!
        5:30!p.m.!and!7:30!p.m.!The!meal!schedule!may!vary!on!Sundays,!when!all!
        meals!may!be!taken!later!and!the!large!meal!may!be!in!the!afternoon!rather!
        than!the!evening.!
     2. Business!hours.!University!business!hours!are!8:00!a.m.!to!5:00!p.m.,!Monday!
        through!Friday.!Most!businesses!open!at!9:00!a.m.!Closing!hours!vary.!Many!
        businesses!always!close!at!5:00!p.m.!or!5:30!p.m.!Businesses!in!shopping!
        centers!away!from!the!downtown!section!are!usually!open!until!9:00!p.m.,!
        Monday!through!Saturday.!Most!businesses!are!open!on!Saturday,!with!
        varying!hours.!Some!are!open!Sunday.!This!is!obviously!confusing.!You!can!call!
        a!business!to!ask!its!hours.!Your!neighbors!will!often!know!when!certain!
        businesses!are!open.!
     3. Alcohol.!You!will!find!as!you!become!more!familiar!with!U.S.!American!society,!
        that!alcoholic!beverages!are!a!significant!factor!in!many!aspects!of!
        entertainment,!dating,!partying,!and!other!leisure!activities.!America!has!many!
        laws!and!customs!concerning!alcoholic!beverages.!If!you!are!uncertain!as!to!
        what!is!the!custom,!the!tradition,!the!laws,!in!regard!to!alcoholic!beverages,!do!
        not!hesitate!to!ask!questions.!In!America!the!majority!of!U.S.!Americans!drink!
        alcoholic!beverages.!Many!of!them!misuse!and!abuse!alcoholic!beverages;!but!
        you!will!quickly!discover!that!the!majority!of!U.S.!Americans!who!do!drink,!do!
        so!in!a!responsible!manner.!If!you!do!have!an!unpleasant!encounter!with!a!
        person!who!is!under!the!influence!of!alcohol!or!another!drug,!stay!calm!and!
        get!help!to!assist!you!in!dealing!with!the!situation.!Do!not!try!to!handle!it!
        yourself.!
     4. Drugs.!Drugs!in!America!fall!into!two!categories.!The!first!category!is!legal!
        drugs.!Legal!drugs!sold!in!drugstores,!supermarkets,!and!convenience!stores!
        are!called!“over"the"counter”!(OTC)!drugs.!These!include!many!different!drugs!
        for!treating!colds,!headaches,!minor!ills!and!ailments.!Other!legal!drugs!are!
        called!prescription!drugs!because!a!qualified!doctor!must!write!out!a!
        prescription!for!a!specific!drug!to!take!care!of!your!problem.!You!then!take!this!
        prescription!to!a!pharmacist!at!a!drugstore!to!have!it!filled.!You!will!find!that!
        America!has!thousands!of!legal!drugs!available!through!OTC!sale!or!through!a!
        prescription.!Always!read!the!label!and!the!instruction!that!comes!with!the!
        drug!to!ensure!that!you!are!taking!it!correctly.!If!you!are!unsure!as!to!what!the!
        effect!of!the!drug!may!be,!the!effect!of!the!drug!when!taken!with!another!drug,!
        with!foods,!or!with!alcohol,!consult!appropriate!medical!authorities.!They!will!
        work!with!you!to!ensure!that!you!take!the!drug!in!a!proper!manner.!
        !!         The!other!category!of!drugs!in!the!U.S.!is!the!illegal!or!illicit!drugs.!
        These!include!marijuana,!cocaine,!crack,!LSD,!PCP,!speed,!and!many,!many!
        more.!Many!illegal!drugs!have!different!nicknames!for!them.!An!example!is!


                                                                                 59
                   marijuana!which!is!also!called!pot,!grass,!and!weed!to!name!a!few.!The!United!
                   States!has!a!variety!of!laws!related!to!illegal!drugs,!their!use,!distribution,!
                   manufacturing,!and!possession.!As!a!guest!in!this!country!these!laws!can!have!
                   a!more!serious!effect!on!you!than!on!a!U.S.!American.!You!will!find!that!many!
                   U.S.!Americans,!including!college!students,!use!illegal!drugs.!For!your!own!
                   safety!and!protection,!and!to!avoid!possible!deportation,!never!get!involved!in!
                   any!situation!that!involves!illegal!drugs.!Always!ensure!that!any!drug!you!do!
                   use!was!obtained!by!you!in!a!legal!manner.!Never!take!an!offer!of!any!drug!to!
                   help!you!out,!to!make!you!feel!better,!to!assist!you!with!a!medical!condition,!
                   unless!the!offer!came!from!a!qualified!professional.!
                5. Tipping.!Tips,!or!service!charges,!are!not!added!to!the!bill!in!most!U.S.!
                   restaurants.!Nevertheless,!tips!are!often!expected!and!needed!by!employees.!
                   It!is!customary!to!tip!the!waiter!or!waitress!15"18!percent!of!the!amount!of!
                   the!check,!if!the!service!is!satisfactory.!Tips!are!not!expected!in!cafeterias!or!
                   the!“fast!food”!establishments.!In!a!hotel!the!bellhop!who!assists!you!to!your!
                   room!expects!a!tip,!usually!$1!or!$2,!depending!on!number!of!suitcases.!Tip!
                   taxi!drivers!15!percent!of!the!fare.!
        !
        Holidays!in!the!United!States!
        !
                    a. General!Information!
              !!     The!U.S.!adopted!legislation!which!moved!the!celebration!of!several!holidays!
              to!the!Monday!nearest!the!date!of!the!event!the!holiday!commemorated.!The!
              purpose!of!this!legislation!was!to!create!as!many!“three"day!weekends”!(i.e.,!
              Saturday"Sunday"Monday)!as!possible!during!the!year.! !
              !!     Four!principal!national!holidays!–!New!Year’s!Day,!Independence!Day,!
              Thanksgiving,!and!Christmas!–!were!not!subjects!of!the!date"changing!legislation.!
              They!are!still!celebrated!on!the!same!date!each!year.!Another!principal!holiday,!
              Labor!Day,!had!traditionally!been!on!Monday.!Many!businesses!and!all!government!
              offices!close!in!observance!of!these!holidays.!
              !!     Of!the!holidays!on!the!following!list,!not!all!are!celebrates!throughout!the!U.S.!
              and!not!all!are!celebrated!by!everyone.!Some!are!holidays!only!for!members!of!
              certain!religions;!others!are!for!particular!groups,!such!as!lovers!and!children.!
              !
                    b. !       Holidays!or!“special!days”!in!the!U.S.!
    !
         i.               January!1,!New!Year’s!Day.!Celebration!of!New!Year’s!Day!usually!occurs!
               the!night!before,!on!“New!Year’s!Eve,”!when!it!is!common!for!groups!of!people!to!
               have!a!party!to!celebrate!the!coming!of!the!New!Year.!It!is!customary!to!make!loud!
               noises!at!midnight!when!the!New!Year!officially!arrives;!embracing!or!kissing!
               others!at!the!party!at!midnight!is!not!unusual.!It!is!a!legal!and!business!holiday.!
!
        ii.              February!12!(or!third!Monday!of!the!month),!Abraham!Lincoln’s!


                                                                                             60
                Birthday.!
!
     iii.                  February!14,!St.!Valentine’s!Day.!A!day!for!lovers!to!exchange!cards!
                and/or!gifts.!Children!in!primary!school!usually!exchange!“valentine!cards”!with!
                their!classmates.!
!
     iv.                     February!22!(or!nearest!Monday),!George!Washington’s!Birthday.!
!
      v.                   Ash!Wednesday!(Date!varies).!Marks!the!beginning!of!the!40"day!period!
                of!Lent,!a!period!of!penitence!and!fast!in!some!Christian!denominations.!On!Ash!
                Wednesday,!some!Christians!attend!a!church!service!during!which!small!ash!marks!
                are!placed!on!their!foreheads!to!symbolize!man’s!ultimate!return!to!dust.!
!
     vi.                  March!17,!St.!Patrick’s!Day.!A!day!dedicated!to!the!patron!saint!of!
                Ireland.!Many!people!wear!something!green!on!this!day!
!
     vii.                  Palm!Sunday,!the!Sunday!before!Easter.!
    viii.                  Easter!Sunday!(date!varies).!Christians!celebrate!the!resurrection!of!
                Jesus!Christ.!For!children,!baskets!of!candy!and!dyed,!hard"boiled!eggs!are!hidden!
                by!a!mythical!“Easter!Rabbit”!or!“Easter!Bunny.”!The!children!seek!out!the!hidden!
                eggs.!
            !
     ix.                  Mother’s!Day,!the!second!Sunday!in!May.!Gifts,!cards,!and/or!special!
                attention!are!given!to!mothers!and!grandmothers.!
!
      x.                  May!30!(or!nearest!Monday),!Memorial!Day.!A!legal!and!business!
                holiday!when!homage!is!paid!to!U.S.!soldiers!who!have!died!in!wars.!
!
     xi.                  Father’s!Day,!the!third!Sunday!in!June.!Gifts,!cards!and/or!special!
                attention!are!given!to!fathers!and!grandfathers.!
!
    xii.                 June!14,!Flag!Day.! ! Flags!are!flown!to!mark!the!adoption!of!the!U.S.!
                American!Flag.!
!
    xiii.                  July!4,!Independence!Day!(usually!termed!“the!Fourth!of!July”).!
                Parades,!fireworks!and!flags!to!celebrate!the!signing!of!the!U.S.!Declaration!of!
                Independence!from!Great!Britain.! ! It!is!a!legal!and!business!holiday.!
!
    xiv.                  Labor!Day,!the!first!Monday!of!September.!A!legal!and!business!holiday!
                noting!the!importance!of!labor!and!labor!organizations.!
!
    xv.                  Rosh!Hashanah,!the!Jewish!New!Year,!and!Yom!Kippur,!the!Jewish!Day!
                of!Atonement.!Both!celebrated!on!varying!dates!in!September!and!October.!
!


                                                                                             61
       xvi.                October!12!(or!nearest!Monday),!Columbus!Day.!Commemorates!the!
              landing!of!Italian!explorer!Christopher!Columbus!on!the!shores!of!North!America.!
              It!is!a!legal!holiday!but!not!a!business!one.!
!
      xvii.             October!24,!United!Nations!Day.!Speeches!and!events!draw!attention!to!
              the!United!Nations.!
!
     xviii.               October!31,!Halloween.!A!children’s!holiday,!associated!with!carving!
              faces!on!pumpkins!called!“jack"o"lanterns”!and!making!witches,!cats!and!ghosts!for!
              decorations.!Children!often!go!to!parties!in!costumes!or!go!“trick!or!treating.”!
              “Trick!or!treating”!means!going!to!a!door!in!a!costume,!saying!“Trick!or!treat”!and!
              being!given!a!piece!of!candy!or!fruit.!Young!children!are!accompanied!by!a!parent!
              when!trick!or!treating.!
        !
       xix.              Election!Day,!the!Tuesday!after!the!first!Monday!in!November.!Not!a!
              legal!or!business!holiday,!but!people!may!leave!work!briefly!in!order!to!vote!in!
              municipal,!county,!state!and/or!national!elections.!
!
       xx.             Veteran’s!Day,!November!11.!A!legal!holiday,!honoring!veterans!of!
              armed!service.!
!
       xxi.                Thanksgiving!Day,!the!fourth!Thursday!in!November.!A!harvest!
               celebration!stemming!from!harvest"time!festivities!in!the!original!U.S.!American!
               Colonies.!A!legal!and!business!holiday!when,!traditionally,!families!gather!and!have!
               a!large!meal!that!includes!turkey!and!pumpkin!pie.! ! ! ! ! ! !
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
       xxii.               Late!November!or!(usually)!December,!Hanukkah.!An!eight"day!Jewish!
               holiday!marking!the!rededication!of!the!Temple.!
!
      xxiii.               December!25,!Christmas.!The!major!U.S.!holiday.!It!began!as!a!Christian!
               celebration!of!the!birth!of!Jesus!Christ,!but!is!now!a!widely!celebrated!day!of!
               feasting!and!gift"giving.!Preparations,!including!gift"buying!and!decoration!of!
               homes!and!public!places,!begin!as!early!as!Thanksgiving.!“Santa!Claus,”!a!mythical!
               figure,!is!said!to!visit!the!homes!of!children!on!the!night!of!December!24!and!leave!
               gifts!for!them!while!they!sleep.!
!
    !
!      !            !
             !
    !
!      !
  !




                                                                                           62
                                       Appendix I
                                   Expressions
          As!is!true!of!any!other!people!in!the!world,!U.S.!Americans!have!developed!certain!
peculiarities!in!their!everyday!language.!As!a!University!of!West!Florida!student,!you!are!sure!
to!encounter!colloquialisms!and!“slang”!terms!which!could!not!have!been!predicted!by!any!
English!language!textbook!or!teacher.!Such!words!are!often!unique!to!a!certain!group!of!
people!(such!as!those!within!the!University!community)!and!are!forever!changing.!The!
following!is!a!list!which!will!give!you!an!idea!of!the!more!common!of!these!usages.!Also!
included!are!terms!or!vocabulary!which!you!may!not!have!encountered!before,!but!which!will!
prove!useful!to!you!during!your!stay!here!in!Pensacola.!No!list!of!this!type!can!even!come!close!
to!being!complete.!For!this!reason,!you!must!remember!never!to!hesitate!or!be!embarrassed!
about!asking!for!clarification!of!a!meaning!or!usage!with!which!you!are!unfamiliar.!U.S.!
Americans!will!enjoy!helping!you!become!familiar!with!the!oddities!of!their!language,!and!
many!acquaintances!have!begun!with!a!shared!good"natured!laugh!over!a!misused!or!
misunderstood!idiom.!
!         !
!        U.S!Americans!like!to!abbreviate!words!when!they!talk.!Thus,!they!are!likely!to!say!“ed.!
psych.”!for!educational!psychology,!“med!school”!for!the!College!of!Medicine!and!“bio”!for!
biology.!It!would!be!impossible!to!list!all!such!abbreviations!here.!If!you!hear!one!you!do!not!
know,!ask!someone!what!it!means.!
!
Common!Expressions!
!
        Area!code:!Number!on!phone!for!local!geographic!are!to!which!you!are!calling.!The!
        Pensacola!area!code!is!850.!
        Bar!Lounge,!Night!Club,!Club,!and!Cafe:!Place!where!alcoholic!beverages!are!served,!
        sometimes!dancing,!entertainment,!pool!tables,!and!video!games!
        Big!deal:!Important!event!
        Blast:!“It’s!going!to!be!a!blast!”!or!“It’s!going!to!be!a!lot!of!fun”!
        Blitzed:!Intoxicated!by!alcohol!      !
        Blow,!bomb:!To!be!unsuccessful!
        Blue:!Depressed,!Have!the!blues:!feel!depressed!
        Bombed:!Intoxicated!by!alcohol!
        Booze:!Liquor!
        Bounce!a!check:!Overdraw!your!checking!account!
        A!buck:!One!dollar!
        Buddy:!Friend!
        Bug!off:!leave!immediately;!“leave!me!alone”!(command)!
        Bum!a!cigarette:!Borrow!a!cigarette!
        Bummed!out:!depressed!
        Bummer:!unpleasant!experience!


                                                                                        63
Busted:!to!be!caught!by!the!police!while!using!drugs,!to!be!“broke”!or!out!of!money!
Butt:!cigarette!
Buzz:!to!get!high!from!alcohol!or!drugs,!“to!get!a!buzz!on”!
BYOB! party:!bring!your!own!booze!or!bring!your!on!bottle!to!the!party.!(BYOL"bring!
your!own!liquor)!
Cheap,!cheapskate:!extremely!tight!with!money,!derogatory!
Check!out:!(1)!sign!out!materials!from!a!library;!(2)!try!to!find!something;!(3)!look!over!
a!situation!
Chill,!chill!out:!take!it!easy!
Cop:!policeman!
Cop!out:!not!face!an!issue!
Cool:!Nice,!“with!it”!
Cram:!to!study!frantically!the!night!before!a!test!
Creep:! a! boring,! unintelligent,! or! otherwise! unimpressive! or! unpleasant! person;!
derogatory!term!
Croak:!die!
Cut!it!out:!“stop!it”!
Date:!A!pre"arranged!social!activity!involving!at!least!two!people,!usually!a!male!and!a!
female.!
Dead:!very!tired!
Dime:!coin!worth!10!cents!
Don’t!get!smart,!don’t!be!a!wise!guy:!don’t!try!to!be!clever!or!funny!
Dope:!Usually!associated!with!heroin,!can!refer!to!other!illegal!drugs!
Double!date:!two!couples!who!plan!to!go!somewhere!or!do!something!together!
Down!in!the!dumps:!depressed!
Drag:!to!inhale!a!cigarette!or!marijuana!cigarette;!type!of!car!race;!something!that!is!
boring!or!tedious!
Drive!one!up!the!wall;!drive!one!nuts:!to!make!one!very!nervous!or!upset!
Drop!in:!to!visit!unexpectedly! !
Dutch!treat!or!to!go!Dutch!or!going!Dutch:!Each!member!of!the!couple!on!a!date!pays!
his!or!her!own!expenses;!“going!Dutch”!is!usually!agreed!on!by!those!involved!before!
the!date!
Fed!up!or!sick!of:!disgusted!with,!or!tired!of!
Flaky:!silly;!unable!to!concentrate!
Formal:!Dress!expected—a!tuxedo!or!suit!for!men,!a!long!dress!for!women.!National!
dress!is!generally!acceptable.!
Freak!out:!to!lose!control!of!oneself.!
Gay:!homosexual!
Goofing!off:!acting!silly!
Give!up:!quit!
Go!bananas:!to!lose!control!of!oneself!
Good!stuff:!illegal/illicit!drugs!
Grass,!weed,!smoke,!tote:!marijuana!
Gross:! something! crude,! usually! unpleasant.! Grossed! out—made—or! feel! uneasy!


                                                                                 64
because!of!something!unpleasant!someone!has!said.!Often!something!to!do!with!sex!
or!other!bodily!functions!
Group:!group!of!musicians!
Grungy:!dirty,!unclear!
Hang!in!there:!keep!trying;!do!not!be!discouraged!
Hang"ups:!Problems,!personal!maladjustments!
Have!a!date:!Go!out!or!get!together!for!a!planned!activity;!refers!most!commonly!to!
an!activity!with!someone!of!the!opposite!sex!
Hassled:!troubled!by;!“What!a!hassle”!“What!a!problem”!
High!or!stoned:!under!the!effect!of!marijuana!or!alcohol!or!a!number!of!other!drugs!
Hit!the!sack!or!turn!in:!go!to!bed!
Hitch!a!ride:!get!a!ride!from!another!person!
Hitch!hike:!to!get!a!ride!from!a!stranger!who!is!going!to!your!destination!
Host!family:!A!family!which!has!volunteered!to!meet!a!foreign!student!because!of!an!
interest!in!sharing!their!home!and!activities!with!him!or!her!
Hung!up:!to!be!in!conflict!over!a!problem!
ID:!identification!card!
In!a!nutshell:!very!briefly!and!concisely!
Informal!(dress):!at!most!affairs,!ordinary!street!clothes;!at!social!affairs,!sport!coats!
and!neckties!for!the!men!and!dresses!for!the!women!
Jock:!an!athlete!of!athletic!person,!especially!one!who!is!not!very!intelligent;!a!mildly!
derogatory!term!
Joint:!marijuana!cigarette!
Loaded,!plastered,!plowed,!bombed:!intoxicated!by!alcohol!
Lost!it:!to!lose!control!of!oneself!
Macho:!exaggerated!concern!with!masculinity!
Messed!up:!confused,!or!not!neat!
Mind!your!own!business;!get!your!nose!out!of!my!business:!Do!not!ask!questions!or!
make!statements!about!this!matter;!it!is!my!concern!and!not!yours!
Mixer:! an! organized! activity! to! get! people! acquainted! with! each! other,! usually! with!
refreshments!and!dancing!
National!dress:!some!distinctive!clothing!that!is!typical!of!a!country!or!culture,!even!
though!not!commonly!work!today!
Nickel:!coin!worth!5!cents!
On!the!house:!free,!no!cost!
On!the!spur!of!the!moment:!Done!without!premeditation!or!planning,!to!be!open:!to!
be!accepting!of!something!or!someone;!to!speak!frankly!about!yourself!
Out!of!one’s!mind!(head):!Crazy;!doing!something!ridiculous;!out!of!it:!“he’s!really!out!
of!it,”!he!tired;!his!mind!is!on!something!else!
Pain!in!the!neck:!an!unpleasant!person!or!experience!
Pot:!marijuana!
Psych!up:!to!prepare!oneself!mentally!or!emotionally!for!something!
Pull!one’s!leg:!to!tease!
Pusher:!one!who!sells!drugs!


                                                                                     65
Put!someone!on:!to!try!to!tease!or!fool!
To!take!a!rain!check:!to!postpone;!accepting!the!same!invitation!at!a!later!date!
R.S.V.P.:!A!reply!is!required!telling!whether!of!not!you!can!attend!a!function!to!which!
you!have!received!an!invitation!“Respondez,!s’il!vous!plait”!
Schroom:!mushrooms—the!kind!you!eat!to!get!high!
See!eye"to"eye:!have!the!same!opinion!
Semi"formal:! usually! formal! dress! or! national! dress! for! women,! business! suit! or!
national!dress!for!men!
Show:!movie!or!film!
Shooter:!ounce/ounce!and!a!half!of!a!liquor!or!combination!of!liquors,!potent!!
Skinny"dip:!to!swim!in!the!nude!
Smashed,!bombed,!polluted,!stoned,!or!wasted:!drunk!or!intoxicated!by!alcohol!
Snow"job:!to!convince!someone!of!something!that’s!not!necessarily!true!
Snowed!under:!to!have!an!over!abundance!of!work!
Stag:!“to!go!stag”!is!to!go!to!a!dance!or!party!without!a!date.!Term!is!usually!used!for!
men!
Street!drugs:!illegal!or!illicit!drugs!
Tacky:!in!poor!taste!
Thank! you! note:! a! short! note! sent! to! a! hostess! afterwards,! in! thanks! for! a! mean,!
overnight!stay!or!a!gift!of!some!kind!
To!be!crazy!about:!to!like!someone!or!something!very!much!
Turn!over!a!new!leaf:!adopt!a!better!course!of!conduct!
Uptight:!worried,!tense!
What’s!up?!What’s!happening?!What’s!going!on?:! ! what!event!is!taking!place?!What!
new!news!is!there?!
Whole!bit:!entire!thing!
Wine!cooler:!wine!and!sprite!or!7"Up,!also!bottled!with!a!fruity!flavor!
Wired:!on!a!drug;!“He’s!wired”!(he!is!under!the!influence!of!a!drug)!
With!it:!current,!hip!in!style,!in!fashion!
X"TC:!Ecstasy,!an!illegal!drug!
Zero!in!on:!focus!or!concentrate!
Zip!code:!last!and!very!important!part!of!address!on!a!letter—a!number!telling!what!
section!of!the!U.S.!the!letter!is!going!to;!the!University’s!is!32514.!
!
Academic!Terms!
!
Academic!advisor:!a!faculty!member!appointed!to!assist!a!student!in!the!planning!of!
his!academic!career!
Add!a!course:!to!enter!a!course!you!were!not!previously!enrolled!in!
Assignment:!out"of"class!work!required!by!a!professor,!due!by!a!certain!set!time!
Blue! books:! a! small! booklet! of! paper! with! a! blue! cover! usually! used! for! essay"type!
examinations!
Carrel:!a!small!desk!in!the!library!reserved!by!individuals!doing!research!
Cum:!pronounced!“kyum,”!and!refers!to!a!person’s!cumulative!grade!point!average!


                                                                                      66
Cut:!to!be!absent!from!a!class!
Dead!week:!the!week!before!final!exams,!no!activities!or!tests!scheduled!
Dissertation:! a! scholarly! independent! research! study! required! to! obtain! a! Doctoral!
degree!
Drop!a!course:!to!withdraw!from!a!course!
Drop! and! add:! That! period! during! the! first! week! of! the! semester! during! which! you!
may!change!your!program!of!studies!by!“dropping”!and!“Adding”!courses.!Also!refers!
to! the! procedure! by! which! this! is! done.! Consult! your! department! for! the! correct!
procedures.!
Finals:!last!exam!of!a!semester!
Flunk:!to!fail!to!achieve!a!passing!grade!
FSA:!Foreign!student!advisor!
Fraternity:! A! social! organization! of! men,! usually! sharing! a! large! house,! each! with!
different!rules,!regulations!and!objectives.!Some!fraternities!are!purely!social;!others!
are!professional!organizations,!and!some!are!academic!honorary!organizations.!
Freshman:!a!student!in!his!first!year!of!study!at!a!university!
GPA:!grade!point!average!
Graduate!or!Grad!student:!a!student!who!has!earned!a!baccalaureate!degree!and!is!at!
a!higher!level,!usually!toward!a!higher!degree!
Greek:!member!of!a!fraternity!or!a!sorority!
Honor!system:!the!practice!of!relying!on!students!not!to!cheat!in!any!academic!matter!
Incomplete:!a!temporary!mark!given!to!a!student!who!is!doing!passing!work!but!who!
cannot!complete!all!the!requirements!for!a!course!during!the!term.!The!student!must!
have!a!valid!reason!and!must!complete!the!course!within!a!period!of!time!acceptable!
to!the!instructor.!
Junior:!a!student!in!his!third!year!at!a!university!
Major:!a!student’s!primary!field!of!study!
Matriculate:!to!be!formally!enrolled!in!the!university!
Minor:!a!student’s!secondary!field!of!study!
Mid"terms:!test!in!the!middle!of!a!semester!
Quiz:!short!test,!usually!given!without!warning!
RA:!resident!assistant!in!the!residence!halls!
Reading!list!(Syllabus):!a!list!of!books!and!articles!prepared!by!each!professor!for!his!
specific!course.!Required!and!suggested!texts!are!usually!indicated!as!such.!This!list!is!
designed!to!give!the!students!an!adequate!introduction!and!survey!of!the!particular!
course.!
Registrar:! official! recorder! of! students’! academic! information,! such! as! courses! taken!
and!grades!received!
Registration:! procedure! of! enrolling! officially! in! classes! at! the! beginning! of! each!
semester!
Semester:!one!academic!term,!this!is!half!of!the!academic!year!
Senior:!a!student!in!his!fourth!year!of!study!at!a!university!
Skim:!to!quickly!read!something!to!get!a!general!idea!of!its!contents!
Skipped,!skip!out:!to!fail!to!attend!a!class,!meeting,!etc.!


                                                                                     67
    Sophomore:!a!student!in!his!second!year!of!study!at!a!university!
    Sorority:!comparable!to!a!fraternity,!except!that!it!is!for!females!
    Thesis:!a!scholarly!research!paper!required!to!obtain!a!master’s!degree!
    Transcript:! official! record! of! past! grades’! and! courses! take!by! a! student;! available!at!
    the!Registrar’s!office!
    Undergraduate:!a!student!in!the!first!four!years!of!study!at!a!university!
    Voyager:!campus!newspaper!of!the!University!of!West!Florida!
    !
    Food!Terms!
    !
    A!la!carte:!each!item!on!a!menu!is!ordered!and!paid!for!separately!
    Bagel:!a!round,!harsh!roll!with!a!hole!in!the!middle!
    Barbeque!(Bar"B"Q):!a!meal!cooked!outside!over!charcoal!
    Bite!to!eat:!a!light,!quick!meal!
    Brunch:!A!combination!of!breakfast!and!lunch,!eaten!in!the!late!morning!
    Cheeseburger:! a! hamburger! with! a! slice! of! cheese! melted! on! it.! A! “vegetable!
    cheeseburger”!or!“Cheeseburger!deluxe”!also!has!lettuce!and!a!slice!of!tomato!on!it.!
    Cocktail:!an!alcoholic!drink!served!before!a!meal!
    Drink:!“let’s!get!a!drink”!“Have!a!drink”!usually!refers!to!an!alcoholic!beverage!
    Eggs:! over"easy—eggs! fried! on! both! sides.! Sunny"side"up! eggs—yoke! side! up,! not!
    turned!over!to!fry!on!both!sides;!scrambled!eggs—eggs!beaten!and!fried!
    French!fries:!potatoes!cut!into!strips!and!cooked!by!deep!fat!frying!
    Hamburger:! a! staple! of! most! students’! diets;! a! fried! or! broiled! ground! beef! pattie!
    served!on!a!bun!
    Munchies:!bite"sized!snack!
    Pot!luck:!a!meal!comprised!of!dishes!brought!by!various!people!
    Sub!sandwich!or!hoagie!(pronounced!“hoagy”):!Sandwich!on!a!long!roll!with!assorted!
    fillings!and!spices!
    Waffle:!similar!to!a!pancake!but!square,!and!having!many!square!indentations,!instead!
    of!being!smooth!and!round!
    !
    !
    !
    !
    !
    !
!
!




                                                                                            68
                                          Appendix II
                 Sizes, Weights, Measurements
                                      Weights!and!Measures!

Length!
1!inch!=!2.54!centimeters!
1!foot!=!12!inches!=!30.48!centimeters!
1!yard!=!3!feet!=!36!inches!=!91.44!centimeters!
39.4!inches!=!1!meter!
1!mile!=!5280!feet!=!1.609!kilometers!
!
Weight!
1!cup!=!8!ounces!!          !         !      !     !       1!ounce!=!28.35!grams!
1!pint!=!2!cups!=!.473!liters!        !      !     !       1!pound!=!16!ounces!=!454!grams!
1!quart!=!4!cups!=!.946!liters!       !      !     !       1!ton!=!2000!pounds!
1.057!quarts!=!1!liter!     !         !      !     !       2.2!pounds!=!1!kilogram!
1!gallon!=!4!quarts!=!3.785!liters!
!
                          Cooking!Notes!and!Weather!Temperatures!
                                             !
! U.S.!cooking!measures!are!given!by!volume!rather!than!by!weight.!Measuring!cups!and!
spoons!are!available!at!discount!stores!very!inexpensively.!
!
!        !       Tsp.!=!teaspoon! !          !            c.!=!cup!
!        !       Tbsp.!=!tablespoon!         !            oz.!=!ounce!
!        !       3!tsp.!=!1!tablespoon!      !            lb.!=!pound!
!
U.S.!temperatures!are!given!in!degrees!Fahrenheit.!The!conversion!formulas!from!Centigrade!
to!Fahrenheit,!and!vice!versa,!are!as!follows:!
!
         From!Centigrade!to!Fahrenheit:! ! F=!9/5!C!+!32!
         !
         Example:!30°C!=!86°!F! !            F=!9"30!+!32!=!270+!32!=!54+32!=!86!
         !       !         !        !        ! ! ! ! 5! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! 5!
         !
         From!Fahrenheit!to!Centigrade:! ! C=!5/9!(F"32)!
         !
         Example:!43°F!=!6.11°C! !           C=!5(43"32)!=!(5"11)!=!55!=!6.11!
         !       !         !        !        ! ! ! ! ! 9! ! ! ! ! ! ! 9! ! ! ! ! 9!
!


                                                                                    69
Clothing Size Comparison Chart For Men and Women - US/UK vs. Europe


Men's Suit/Jacket


US/UK         32      34     36    38         40    42    44
Europe       42      44     46     48     50        52    54


Men's Shirt/collar sizes


US/UK         15     15.5    16    16.5       17   17.5
Europe       38      39     41     42     43        44


Women's Clothes


US            6       8     10     12     14       16     18
Europe       38      40     42     44     46        48    50
UK            8      10     12     14     16       18     20


Shoes


US Men's      6       7     8      9      10       11
US Women's     6.5    7.5   8.5     9.5   10.5     11.5
Europe       38      39     40.5   42     43        44
UK            5       6     7      8      9        10