Major: Operations Research and Financial Engineering
International Experience: University College London (UCL)
Location: London, UK
I am Alan Wong, a senior in the ORFE department pursuing certificates in COS, SML, and EMS. Coming to Princeton as an international student from Hong Kong, I experienced immense personal growth through my exposure to two very different academic and cultural environments. This motivated me to immerse myself into a third environment by studying abroad at University College London, which I can safely say resulted in the best and most fruitful semester of my lifetime. I took three Econ classes and one Philosophy class, all of which I thoroughly enjoyed. Outside of the classroom, I spent most of my time walking around London with friends during weekdays and traveling to continental Europe over weekends. I was amazed by the shockingly high level of diversity (in terms of culture, language, social norms, architecture, landscape, cuisine etc.) packed into a continent barely larger than the United States. Every weekend trip I took was starkly different from every other, so my semester felt like a crash course on European culture, one that was filled with joy, adventure, and pleasant surprises. On top of being eye-opening and exciting, this multinational experience truly deepened my understanding of the world beyond Hong Kong and Princeton, providing me with ample time and inspiration to reflect on my personality, perceptions, and values. Finally, I want to dispel the myth that engineering students cannot study abroad – I did it as an ORFE major, and I know other engineers who have done it too!