Sharing Cultures
April 2008

“Sharing Cultures,” Ensign, Apr. 2008, 74

Sharing Cultures

Leonard Heo-Moun, Tahiti

When I attended BYU–Hawaii, I lived with roommates from various parts of the world. In some ways it was a challenge because of cultural differences. But we learned how to work together.

If you’re in a similar situation, I recommend getting to know your roommates as soon as you can. Ask questions about them and their families. Discover what you have in common, and learn to appreciate one another’s cultures or backgrounds. Maybe you could share a favorite dish from home or do activities together.

Since you share living space, you’ll want to build a friendship on honesty and trust. So that you understand one another’s expectations, it’s good to establish apartment rules up front. Be respectful of each other’s property and space, especially shared space.

As you set a good example for one another, you could be establishing a long-lasting friendship. I’ll never forget a nonmember roommate from Brazil who always helped me remember to choose the right. Years later we are still friends, sharing the good things about each other’s religions.

Illustration by Joe Flores