The value of opportunities
Director of HSE University Saint Petersburg Sergey Kadochnikov told us about how valuable study abroad experiences are, and how students can benefit from participating in international exchange programmes.
On the 1st of February the call for applications for the International Mobility Programmes has started. Students from HSE University Saint Petersburg traditionally express quite a lot of interest towards international exchange programmes. However, during Q&A sessions held by Centre for International Cooperation we have noticed that a lot of students do not fully realize how valuable and beneficial studying abroad is. Director of HSE University Saint Petersburg Sergey Kadochnikov shared his study abroad experiences.
- Sergey Mikhailovich, could you please tell more about your study abroad experiences? How did this influence your further life and career?
My experience with studying abroad is connected to Germany, where I did a masters in international economy in one of the loveliest German cities, Konstanz. It is situated on the shore of the Bodensee, the biggest lake in the south of the Federal Republic of Germany. This city has a fantastic university, whose faculty of economics is consistently ranked among the top 5 in the country (Konstanz University).Surely, this experience has greatly influenced my academic career. It has affected my academic interests, as well as my understanding of how the academic life works in a modern international university: how a professor’s or a researcher’s career is built; how students choose their fields of study; how they use various career services provided by the university, and many more. During my studies I also worked as a teaching assistant in a science centre at the university I went to. That did not only help me to support myself financially, but also was incredibly useful for my studies, because the research projects I was involved in were very closely connected to the topics we were covering during the courses.It is not all just about the studies though. Apart from German students (who were the majority) our Master’s course also had students from Norway, Denmark, Bolgaria, France, Italy and USA. We were spending a lot of time together, discussing our Master’s theses, travelling together, sunbathing on the famous beaches of the Bodensee, and drinking German beer. It was absolutely great!
- What competences can a student acquire while studying abroad?
There are quite simple things, like figuring out your everyday life abroad, starting from using public transportation and making purchases in the shops, to signing a long-term rental agreement. All these basic skills can be acquired during studying abroad for semester or a year. And these are all important parts of what is called intercultural communication.If we are speaking about international exchange programmes for undergraduates, one of the biggest benefits for students is the opportunity to get more information about the graduate programmes at the university or in the country of their studies. It is a very important experience, and it is quite hard to get this information anywhere else.
- Which benefits and advantages does studying abroad provide for future employees?
If a company or an organization the student is planning to work for is an international one, or is working with foreign partners on a regular basis, for example, has international contracts or participates in international events, it is absolutely natural, that the candidate who has an experience of studying abroad will get more chances to be employed. The same applies for international services and departments of many other organizations, for example, committees or ministries of regional governments. Moreover, a student, who had an experience of living and studying in different countries, is perceived as someone who is more flexible and is able to adapt to various conditions, which is a very valuable quality in the rapidly changing world.You can learn more about exchange opportunities and scholarships, as well as the application process, and send your application at our StudyAbroad portal.
Sergey M. Kadochnikov