Student interviews

Shuroq Taju

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1.What is your name, where are you from?

My name is Shuroq and I’m from Saudi Arabia

2.Why did you decide to study abroad?

There are many reasons for that, such as the fact that I like to get to know more about other cultures and meet new people, but the main reason was to be with my family since they got to Poland before I did. Moreover, studying abroad is an experience and a life chance that shouldn’t be missed.

3.What did you like most about Premedical Course? What were the benefits of participating in it?

The best was the relationship between the doctors and me as a student. It wasn’t as formal as it would normally be. They were really kind and helpful as if they were my friends. The premedical course helped me a lot during my first year due to the fact we had similar subjects.

4.Why did you decide to study medicine?

I’m a curious person and I’ve always been wondering about the human body and how it works – specially how complicated the brain is, therefore, I decided to study medicine.

5.Why did you choose MUL?

I am not going to lie and say the cliché answer that it’s because it is a good university or its well reputation or etc. I just chose it because my sister is studying here and again to be with my family in the same place, Lodz.

6.What do you like about your studies?

It’s hard to specify but I like the clinical classes which are more real than the theory learning. I like the way we communicate with patients and how I improve my language (since most of the patients speak polish) and skills.

7.What was the strangest, funniest thing you have encountered during your stay here?

The strangest yet funniest thing is hearing the Poles saying “no” but what they really mean is actually “yes”.

8.What is one part of your culture that you would like to share with Poles?

There are a lot of differences between the two cultures and what I love the most about the Saudi culture that it is more family oriented than here. Also, I would love for the Poles to try Saudi food, since it has more spices, rather than just salt and pepper.

Christina Kajca

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1.What is your name, where are you from?

My name is Christina Kajca and I’m from Germany.

2.Why did you decide to study abroad?

I decided to study abroad because of the experience and because of the fact that I will study in English and will be able to practice in a lot of different countries other than Germany, after I graduate.

3.What did you like most about Premedical Course? What were the benefits of participating in it?

About the Premedical Course I liked that you slowly got introduced to the lifestyle and studying habits of a medical/dentistry student and that you learnt all the basic knowledge and language skills before you actually start your studies.

4.Why did you decide to study dentistry?

Since my mom is a Dentist and I spent a lot of time in her Dental Practice watching her working and got interested in dentistry pretty early already. My interest got bigger as I got older and finally after my High School graduation I decided to study dentistry at the MUL.

5.Why did you choose MUL?

I chose MUL because of its location in Lodz where part of my family lives and the Dentistry Department with modern Dental Units which enables students to learn their practical skills on a high quality level.

6.What do you like about your studies?

About dentistry I like the fact that you can improve the oral health of your patients and cure their diseases, as well as the interpersonal contact with patients and the room for career growth in this profession with so many various fields of specialization.

7.What was the strangest, funniest thing you have encountered during your stay here?

Lodz and its people are actually surprising me every day. From people casually carrying monkeys as a pet on their shoulder, others randomly dancing on the streets or participating in one of maaaany random parades you can see everything on a normal study day on the Piotrkowska street. Even if the weather here is as predictable as the drivers…not at all. One day you might take out your Flipflops because it suddenly got 30 degrees while during the next day you will need a paddle boat to get to Uni because cars are sinking on the streets due to all the rain.

8.What is one part of your culture that you would like to share with Poles?

Since Germany and Poland are neighbor countries there are actually a lot of similarities in their cultures. The only thing I could think of would be the hardworking, punctual and precise personality traits of a German I would show to a Polish person, since that’s what Germans are known for.

Steven de Santo

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1. What is your name, where are you from?

Steve de Santo and I am from Germany with an American Italian background.

2. Why did you decide to study abroad?

I am an absolute travel addict. I enjoy experiencing the world with its different cultures and what it has to offer. I moved away from home when I was 14 in order to explore overseas, and ever since then I seek new experiences. Life is just too short to stay in one place and live the same routine our entire lives.

3. Why did you decide to study medicine?

I have always been fascinated with the human body. Back home I work as a fitness coach and that inspired me to expand my knowledge and further make a more professional career out of this profession. Also my parents are very passionate doctors.

4. Why did you choose MUL?

While coaching, I met a young couple that had studied here. She is now a dentist and he works in a hospital. They advised me that the Programme is great, and that there was a diverse student body which made the studies an interesting experience.

5. What do you like about your studies?

I enjoy the freedom and independence that the Programme offers. Also the direct “hands on” experiences in the Anatomy Building made it a pleasant transition into the medical Programme and what we have to expect.

6. What was the strangest, funniest thing you have encountered during your stay here?

I’d say the strangest thing so far here is the music genre “Disco Polo”. It’s vibrant energy that fills Piotrkowska at night, is quite amazing and very different compared to Germany.

7. What is one part of your culture that you would like to share with Poles?

I would love to take every Polish person to the Oktoberfest in my hometown of Munich. The food & drinks are phenomenal and in combination with the German folk music are just a sensation.

Mitrasweetha A. Selvarajuh

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1.What is your name, where are you from?

Mitrasweetha A. Selvarajuh, Malaysia

2.Why did you decide to study abroad?

I was eager to explore Europe and to meet many new people with various ethnicities and cultural backgrounds.

3.Why did you decide to study medicine?

I chose to pursue medicine as I love helping people around me. Plus, the traumatizing death of my beloved grandfather due to a silly medical mistake made me more determined than I ever was to become a good doctor in future.

4.Why did you choose MUL?

To be honest, one of the many reasons as to why I chose MUL was because the tuition fee is considered to be very reasonable among many other European Universities. Apart from that, I also was well-acquainted with a few students from this university who guided me into choosing MUL. I was awed by the efficient facilities and services provided by the university.

5.What do you like about your studies?

I like that I get to learn in a rather friendly environment with amazing peers and understanding lecturers. I get to learn new things everyday while having great fun.

6.What was the strangest, funniest thing you have encountered during your stay here?

The most strange thing that I encountered here was the Mega Black Friday Sale that was on a couple of weeks ago. It was my first time experiencing an event like that.

7.What is one part of your culture that you would like to share with Poles?

As Malaysians, our dishes mainly consist of rice and spicy gravy that almost always consists of coconut milk and a hefty amount of herbs and spices. We LOVE food.

Thesrika Sukumar

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1.What is your name, where are you from?

I am Thesrika Sukumar and I am from Malaysia

2.Why did you decide to study abroad?

Well I actually wanted to experience studying in a different environment meaning with people of different nationalities, cultures and tradition.  This is an opportunity for me to witness a completely new way of life. I consider studying abroad also as a chance to experience different styles of education. On top of this, I will return with a new perspective on culture, language skills, a great education, and a willingness to learn. Needless to say, all of these are very attractive to future employers.

3. Why did you decide to study medicine/dentistry?

I have always been amazed by how complex the human body is and how the different systems in the body coordinate so well to have it work efficiently. So, I wanted to learn more in detail about it. As a student and later in my career I’ll be having a direct impact on people’s lives that will certainly satisfy my sense of duty of giving back to the society as well.

4.Why did you choose MUL?

I have been to Lodz earlier and quite like the place. When I visited the University earlier, I liked the approach of the administrative officers. It gave me a good impression on this university. In addition to that, I had friends here who recommended this university.

5.What do you like about your studies?

I like the fact that we don’t only learn courses that we are supposed to have knowledge on but also some other subjects that are interesting and related to the field of medicine.

6.What is one part of your culture that you would like to share with Poles?

I am a traditional Indian dancer. So, I think I would like others to see the unique form of performing arts in my culture as I believe it explains more about my culture and tradition that what words can describe.

Timothy Mankowski

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1. How do you feel about winning the iNTERSTUDENT 2015 competition?

I feel very honored to be a recipient of such a prestigious award. It was a very pleasant surprise when I heard about my nomination and later when I found out that I had won in the Master’s category. I would like to offer a special thank you to faculty and staff at the Medical University of Lodz, my friends and colleagues, and of course, my family who have supported me along the way.

2. Having grown up in Canada, what inspired you to study in Poland at the Medical University of Lodz?

I studied on exchange at the Politechnika Warszawska during my undergraduate years and really enjoyed that experience. When I found out that the Medical University of Lodz had an English division, I sent in my application. Both of my parents met and studied medicine at the Łódzka Akademia Medyczna. I grew up listening to their stories from their student years, but I never imagined that I would one day study at the same university or even take courses in some of the same lecture halls. I guess in a way you could call this a new family tradition.

3. What made you decide that you wanted to study medicine?

I think that this is an exciting period when medicine is being integrated with new technologies. I was always interested in studying medicine, but I also had an interest in combining the fields of medicine with computer science. To do this, I first completed a degree in computer science before starting medical school.

4. What is your impression of Poland? Has something surprised you in particular?

Poland has a lot to offer – it has a diverse geography, rich in history and culture. Poles are very generous and supportive. Each year, during the Juwenalia festivals in May, city mayors grant students additional privileges to their city. These events highlight how well students in Poland are treated. Another example is the automatic student discount on travel and other services throughout the country. This is something that many international students see for the first time. University life is balanced, with many opportunities to take time off on student-organized trips and events to relax and have fun between studies.

5. What do you think of Lodz?

Lodz is in the heart of Poland – It is right at the centre and close to other major Polish cities. Lodz offers a very student-friendly atmosphere with lots of places to meet and hang out with friends (e.g., Piotrkowska Street, Manufaktura) and be entertained (e.g., festivals, theatres, philharmonic). One of my favourite aspects of Lodz is its many parks, each with its own character. I bike all year long and I frequently pass through more than one park on my way to a destination. The parks offer a quiet place to escape when you need to relax your mind. There is always something new and interesting to see in this city!

6. I know that medicine is not your only passion. Please, tell more about your love for music.

Music allows me to not only explore many ideas with rhythm, sound and improvisation, but also to learn about myself and others. I grew up studying classical music for the piano and have also composed works of my own. Music has allowed me to relax after long days of work or study. There is no language barrier when it comes to music. When I was in Japan, I once played at a concert with a junior high school art teacher with whom I could not communicate using languages. Speaking English was a barrier for him, but we both knew songs by groups like The Beatles, The Eagles, and Elton John. We spent hours improvising after classes. For me this experience highlighted the power of music to bring together people of all backgrounds.

7. Could you share some of your plans for the future?

For now, I would like to complete my medical studies and start my internship. The Medical University of Lodz is well connected and offers many opportunities to students interested in research and work. I would like to combine my knowledge and experience in both fields of computer science and medicine. I am interested in how software can help empower doctors’ abilities and raise the standard of treatment. I hope that my knowledge and skills can find good use in the future. I love to travel, so I hope to see more of the world in the years to come.