Challenges Of Russia For An International HSE Student
Russia is an interesting and a beautiful country.
Hello, I’m from Indonesia and my native language is Indonesian, although I’ve been studying and talking English since childhood.
My first time visiting Russia was 2 years ago, on 2017, I had been studying Russian for a year before entering university.
I remember being a little bit shocked because i still couldn't believe that I was finally in Russia and my life was going to change drastically. My first impression was: "Moscow reminds me of Jakarta". You have to be tough to live in Moscow: the life pace is very fast, people don’t really smile a lot, and it is very cold here.
I guess one of the weirdest cultural features for me is to say «будь здорова» when someone is sneezing. It’s actually normal too in Indonesia, but what makes it different is that we don’t really remember to say “будь здорова” when someone is sneezing, like it's optional. But in Russia, it’s very common and habitual thing that people say.
I don’t think so, it’s actually very different.
There are some dishes that I actually like, Russian pancakes and dumplings, for example. But I also really like pilaf because it reminds me of Indonesia. We have something similar, and we call it ‘Nasi Goreng’ - fried rice.
It’s all hard, I don’t think the hardest aspect even exists because the Russian as a whole is overcomplicated.
Yes, because I practice much more with my Russian roommates and friends. Probably not in a "correct grammar" way, but it is improving a lot.
The word “challenging” is not even enough to describe it, but yes, it is 100% very challenging, I used to cry almost every day when I just entered the university because I felt like I didn’t understand anything, and what I had been learning in extra courses was not enough. Partly that's due to professors talking in much more formal way. To be honest, HSE should get some awards for providing good facilities and technology, because they are very comfortable and make my life much easier. However, I do think they need to change the education system a little bit, because I just don’t feel that international students in bachelor’s degree are improving their scores here. There are lots of international students that get kicked out or decided to get out from HSE because they are tired of the system.
My advice would be: "Work and study very hard, develop your skills, don’t be afraid to talk during the seminar". What matters is striving towards your goals (which is graduating from university) and not quitting. Here in HSE, I've learnt to get out of my comfort zone and become tougher and more disciplined. I always ask myself: how can I change this situation for the better? How can I improve this? In the end, I've learnt how to manage my time.