back to school

School started on Monday.  Goodbye summer vacation, hello Chilean university system!  I’m taking 1 class with my study abroad program (Human Rights in Chile) and 3 classes at a Chilean university, Pontifica Universidad Católica de Chile.

Here are a few pictures of the campus (I didn’t take them- photo credit: Google Images)

^The main entrance.

^The Facultad de Letras, where I have most of my classes.

The registration process has been, in a word, stressful. But I’m almost through it, and the end of next week, I will have my class schedule all figured out.  But in the meantime, I had 2 major achievements this past week:

1. Learning how to print out my assignments in the university computer lab.

2. Learning how to photocopy my reading assignments.

Normally, printing and photocopying wouldn’t be a big deal, but they’ve got a different system here at the Chilean university.

Printing goes like this: Find a computer lab on campus.  Log into a computer, get your assignment ready to print, etc.  Go up to the lab monitor and explain to her that you are an foreign student and you have no idea what your doing.  She tells you to take a number.  Yep, just like at the deli counter at Meijer.  When it’s your turn, hand your number to the lab monitor.  Also, you better have brought your own blank white paper, because paper is not provided.  Give paper to lab monitor.  Log into a different computer up near the front of the room and click print.  Go back to lab monitor to retrieve your final product and leftover printer paper!  Success!

Students make photocopies of the reading materials for classes, because books are super expensive here, due to a 18% tax (I think?) on them.  Professors leave folders of the readings a different photocopiers around campus.  This may or may not be against copyright codes, but it seems to be the norm here.  To photocopy: find the correct copy center.  Once again, explain to the student working the copy center that you are not Chilean, and thus have no idea what you’re doing.  Ask for copies of materials you need.  Return later to pick them up.  Wait in line for a while, and pray that you asked for the right copies, and that nothing got lost in translation.  Pay about $7 (US) for the first few weeks of readings!  Another success!

Although I’m not looking forward to having homework again, I’m an really excited to be on a somewhat-predictable weekly schedule.  Sorry, I don’t have any of my own pictures this week, but hopefully I’ll have more soon!

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