Santa holding a present
Life in Orlando, Life on Campus

Ho ho ho! “Secret Santa” Christmas tradition explained

A popular American saying about gifts is, “It’s better to give than it is to receive.” It just feels good to make someone happy with a thoughtful gift, you know? But like many college kids, you might not have a lot of money for presents. That’s why “Secret Santa” is perfect for students. We’ll walk... Continue reading Ho ho ho! “Secret Santa” Christmas tradition explained
Life in Orlando

Why Americans Say “Happy Holidays,” Not “Merry Christmas”

This time of year, you see fuzzy red and white Santa hats, Christmas trees and other festive decorations. For many Americans, Christmas is the big December holiday. So why is the common trend to say, “Happy holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”? There are actually several important reasons why it’s popular to say “happy holidays”: It’s... Continue reading Why Americans Say “Happy Holidays,” Not “Merry Christmas”
Does anybody know how to study?
Academic Support, Life on Campus

Tips for studying for finals

Studying for final exams is the second biggest enemy facing college kids (right behind “running out of ramen at 3am”). Here are our tips for studying success, with a little help from beloved college-themed TV show Community. Study with classmates Mashable A study group can add fun, encouragement and other benefits to preparing for tests. Make... Continue reading Tips for studying for finals
handshake
Life in Orlando, Life on Campus

How to Make Friends While Studying Abroad

The great poet William Butler Yeats once said, “There are no strangers here; only friends you haven’t yet met.” As you study in America, you’ll come across many opportunities to meet new people. But will you take advantage of these chances? Yes, you will. Because who are you to disrespect William Butler Yeats? The man... Continue reading How to Make Friends While Studying Abroad
Group of students at a football tailgate
Life on Campus

Homecoming: An American University Tradition Explained

While attending school in the United States, you will encounter many activities that will give you the traditional “American university experience.” None is more iconic than the tradition of homecoming. On UCF’s Orlando campus, it is alive and well, and judging from our students, it is better than ever! What is Homecoming? Before we delve... Continue reading Homecoming: An American University Tradition Explained
Students whispering to one another down the line
Life in Orlando

Spill the Beans: American Idioms Explained (R-Z)

Idioms exist in every language. Understand more common idioms will help you understand better what American people are talking about. So be sure to check out our other American idioms series part 1 and part 2.   Raining cats and dogs When it is raining particularly heavily. Example: “It’s really raining cats and dogs out... Continue reading Spill the Beans: American Idioms Explained (R-Z)
Little boy with lightbulb drawn over his head
Life in Orlando

Letting the Cat Out of the Bag: American Idioms Explained (G-P)

Adjusting to life in a new culture can be challenging enough without language getting in the way. We’re here to explain even more idioms you’ll hear in the USA so these phrases actually make sense. Missed part 1 of our American idioms series? Check that out too!   Get off my back When you want... Continue reading Letting the Cat Out of the Bag: American Idioms Explained (G-P)