Hong Hall: Speaking the language of community (in French, or Chinese, or whatever)
Just because you live in Hong International Hall doesn’t mean you have to be fluent, or even conversational, in a foreign language. But it does help to have an interest.
After all, most of your fellow hallmates will be talking almost exclusively in a foreign language as they pass each other in the hall.
Michael Engh, a junior and resident assistant, lives in the Spanish wing. He tries to speak Spanish whenever he can. But sometimes, he says, it’s just not possible. Either your brain hurts from finals or you just can’t remember a word or phrase.
Still, it’s the effort that counts. And the idea that everyone is working together to immerse themselves in a common language not only improves comprehension – it really brings everyone together.
It also helps that Hong is one of the smaller residence halls on campus, and you have to apply to get in. It makes for a tight-knit community, said Engh, who is majoring in communication and global studies, with a minor in Spanish.
“I love the hall and the community that lives there,” he said. “I feel like I know everyone who lives there.”