Changing Direction

Kamilia Safiullina tells her story of changing the University.

Changing Direction

In 2013 I entered in Saint-Petersburg State University in the psychology faculty. I had studied there for 4 years and finally in 2017 I finally finished my education. And after that, I had a serious dilemma behind me: what should I do next?

At that time, I had serious doubts if I wanted to work in the area of psychology. I wasn’t sure I was good enough to start working as psychologist. But I was very sure that I was tired of university and I didn’t want to go to the university for a master’s degree. Also, my faculty didn’t have a good reputation in master’s studies. All my friends in the University told me that it would be pointless and waste of time. But then, my mother started persuading me to continue my education as master. She didn’t believe that I could find a job with only one diploma. To make things worse, she was right. It was really hard to find a job; I think it was due to me lacking experience. So, I submitted my documents.

In the fall of 2017, I became a student again. And from the start, I did realize that I made a mistake. The main reason was I was bored. Almost all subjects that I had in bachelor, I had to study again but as a student of a master’s degree. And they even didn’t count my previous passed exams, so I must study all these over and over again. And my new dormitory was in Peterghof, which was about 2 hours away from Saint-Petersburg – so, it’s all about 4 hours in road.

In all these circumstances it was really hard to find a job, that I can combine with studying.

So, no wonder that in December I felt depressed and tired. Nothing brought me joy. I didn’t feel that my study was useful. And I decided to drop it. To move away from Saint-Petersburg. The hardest thing was to talk with mother about it. But she saw how desperate I was, so she supported me. And after the first half year I returned to my hometown Kazan.

I found a job. And life started calming down. But I missed Saint-Petersburg, and my mother again said about how it would be wonderful if I got a master’s degree. I came to think that maybe master’s degree in other direction wasn’t a bad idea. I would have two different diplomas and have the opportunity to leave parents’ house. I was always interested in international relations, so I started to prepare.

Unfortunately, there were portfolio contest in my native Saint-Petersburg State University. I didn’t have that many achievements in my previous education, so I started to look for programmes in Moscow, especially Moscow State University and Higher School of Economics. Luckily, there were only exams: English and History.

I failed my exam in Moscow State University, so I was nervous when it was time to go to the exams in HSE. I even thought not to go, like why I even should try – I will only embarrass myself. But I kept myself strong. And now I’m the student of HSE!

Have I regret my decision to leave my previous university and changed my direction? Sometimes, but not that much. I felt really miserable about two years ago. But now I studied interesting topics, have a great dormitory with lovely neighbors and I live in Moscow. Isn’t that great?

In the end, here is some tips that can help you to change the university:

  • make a list with pros and cons: it will help you to understand are you 100% sure about your decision or is it just instant desire
  • talk about your decision with friends or family to find a support: tell them that you don’t like your direction
  • try to find alternatives: what’s harder than dropping the university? Dropping and going nowhere. Yes, it can be helpful sometimes, but it won’t be too much if you also plan what should you do next.
  • don’t worry – yes, it’s hard, but think about how happy and relief will you feel, when you start to study something that you really like

So, that’s it. If you want to change faculty or university and you read this, good luck! I believe you can do this.

Text by
Kamilia Safiullina