Opinion|How Another First-Year Student Sees Life at AUBG
Nadezhda Yankulska is a
local first-year student who shared her perspective on life at AUBG. In her opinion, being local indeed has many advantages but she also shared what she does not like about the atmosphere on campus. Since it was not a big dream of Yankulska’s to be admitted to AUBG, she is now not blinded by everything around the university, but is able to be realistic and look at things from different perspectives.
Although applying to AUBG was not Yankulska’s lifelong plan or main goal, she was granted full scholarship for her results. She intends to major in journalism and mass communication and is interested in political science. Yankulska wants to make the most of her stay at the university. She is a part of AIESEC and Radio AURA, and attends pilates and zumba sessions.
One of the advantages of being local, Yankulska said, is the lack of “traumatic transition” that most students from other cities or countries experience. For her, almost nothing changed, no culture shock occurred and most importantly, she has not broken the connection with her family and her home. “A few months ago, most students had to leave their homes to come to AUBG, then travel abroad and probably not see their families for more than a few days anytime soon,” Yankulska said. Unlike them, she is able to enjoy the best of both her university experience and her relationship with her family and friends.
Another thing she likes about being local is the lack of peer pressure. She does not feel obliged to fit in the environment, whereas students who live on campus are together all the time and others observe their personal lives and habits. For students from abroad who do not visit their families often, their life at AUBG is “their whole life for the time they stay here.” Local students get to keep their relationships with people outside the university and live their university lives and their personal ones simultaneously. “I have the choice what to share with others and how much time to spend among others on campus without being subject to observation and judgement,” Yankulska said.
Obviously, as a local student, Yankulska also spares expenses, which is another great plus. She does not spend so much money and time on travelling as others do.
However, the coin has another side. Not living on campus leaves you distanced from others no matter how much time you spend around. Local students may miss events and important news about student life because of the few kilometers that keep them away from the vigorous life on campus.
Yankulska is impressed by the constant striving of the university to bring innovations, the numerous opportunities it offers, and the variety of courses and clubs which are also often updated and consistent with students’ demands. Still, she needs to be challenged every day so she wants to take advantage of the exchange programs the university offers and work and travel abroad as much as possible. She does not believe she could “be satisfied with staying at the university for four years.”
Other students as a whole did not come up to Yankulska’s expectations. Whether because she is local or not, she still feels a certain detachment from others which might not be the case with first-year students who live on campus. Also, she is disappointed that most students only discuss which clubs are “more pointless” than others, instead of trying to take advantage of the offered opportunities. Only a few people are distinguished, outstanding and well-known for their advantages, although she expected the opposite.