Getting There: The Application Process
JiLin University is located in the city of Chanchun in the North-Eastern reaches of China, located with the Jilin provence which boreders Inner Mongolia, Russia and North Korea. You will be a part of the 59,000 students enrolled on campus, of which 1,200 are foreign students. Most of the Foreign students will be from countries bordering China (so yes, many are Korean/Russian, my roommate is Napali). Foreign students live (and have classes) on two of the eight campuses, Nanhu and Yihou. Yi hou is the main campus where upper level Chinese language classes are held. You get a room before you register for classes, so you may or may not be living on the campuses where your classes are.
I am here on the Chinese Government Scholarship, which requires 1 year of Chinese study before you arrive, and studying the language while you are here. If you come to the university under any other circumstance, some familiarity with the Chinese language is a necessity. You can get everything done by using english (in terms of setting up classes, and attending), but it will be extremely stressful, confusing doing anything else, most people outside of the university won't speak English. For information on the scholarship application, talk to your Chinese teacher.
There are mulitple ways of getting to Changchun, but in the end, you have to go through Beijing before getting to the city. Depending on what semester you will study here, look up any holidays that happen before the semester starts (public holidays are usually when school breaks). For example, My term (spring) started on March 7, registration started on March 3rd, and i had a few months free time between when winter break started and when spring trem started. I knew the Chinese New year started on February 2nd, so i came to China early and stayed in Beijing for a month, during one of China's biggest celebrations. The Mid-Autumn festival is the holiday before the winter term.
I will go more in-depth on subjects in later posts, and i will finish with an important point. Jilin is a sure-fire shot to get into (i'm one of maybe 15 Americans here) and is incredibly easy to get into. If you apply for schools in Beijing or other big cities it will be harder, and i have heard that you will not learn much of the language while studying there. Keep this in mind when you are applying.