Roommates: Matthew and Tianwei

Matthew Couch ‘19 and Liu Tianwei ‘19 first met through a Facebook group for incoming freshmen. After exchanging messages on WeChat and QQ, their friendship was sealed when they were randomly paired as roommates in their first year. They decided to share a room again in their sophomore year. Matthew’s first experience of China was during a trip to Chengdu while at high school, and during junior year, Tianwei studied away in New York--his first visit to America. Throughout their friendship, they've been each other’s go-to person for navigating Chinese and American culture. “Tianwei’s English is much better than my Chinese! He has taught me many things about Chinese culture,” Matthew says, to which his roommate replies: “We help each other’s a mutual learning process."



Liu Tianwei ‘19

Home: Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China
Major: Mathematics 

Reason for choosing NYU Shanghai: “I don’t want to live an ordinary Chinese college life. I’m going to choose a more challenging life. The first year here was quite tough because all the classes are in English, but now everything is getting better.”

Did you bring anything special from home? “I brought something from my hometown. It’s from my mom. It’s kind of traditional and superstitious. My mom went to a temple on a mountain, got an amulet there and asked me to carry it in my bag. I still have it with me. It’s kind of special for me because it’s from my mom.”

Clubs and fun: “I joined the Business Chapter. Although I major in mathematics, business and marketing are still very interesting to me. I also joined the E-Sports club.”


Matthew Couch ‘19

Home: Texas, U.S.
Major: Data Science (Originally I was a business major, but I switched)

Reason for choosing NYU Shanghai: I was afraid that if I stayed in America to attend college I’d never have a chance to explore the rest of the world. At NYU Shanghai you meet people from over 60 countries!

Did you bring anything special from home? For me, college is a fresh new start. There is so much to experience at NYU Shanghai that I didn’t want to be tied down to the past.

Clubs and fun: I joined Green Shanghai and Rotaract as I love volunteering. I also like going out to eat and just hanging out.


Want to share your roommates story? Send us an email at

Read Leidy Tapasco and Na Sun's roommate story here.
Read Mi Zhou (Dora) and Lauren Benedict's roommate story here.