Life of Indian students at Turiba University (6)
The number of students choosing to study in our university increases each year. This year it has already reached 230 students from different countries in Europe and Asia. Since September of this study year, 16 students from India are studying in our university’s Tourism and Hospitality Management Bachelor Programme and in the Strategic Management in Tourism Master Programme.
When I was given a chance to visit five cities in one of India’s states — Gujarat, under the framework of an international Rotari exchange programme, to present our university there, I decided to meet and talk with their students before setting off for the journey. First, I wanted to find out from which states of India they were coming and how they feel in our university and Latvia in general. The students who came to the meeting were Lalan Gupta, Manas Malhotra, Rakmesu Kumar and Twinkie. They told me that the majority of students studying in our universities came from Delhi and New Delhi, while there are also students from other places, such as the Kushinagar district and the Punjab state and others. Currently there are no students from Gujarat in the university. The students had learned about Turiba from the Indo European Educational service, the internet and workshops in New Delhi. The Indian students had picked Turiba because it offers good quality studies for a comparatively lower tuition fee than that in other European countries. According to the students, the accommodation costs are also lower than anywhere else in Europe. More importantly for them, Turiba offers study programmes in tourism management and organisation of events — something that is not available in India.
When asked about the positive and negative experiences in our university and in Latvia, the students responded that the level of theoretical knowledge in Latvia is higher than in India. One key aspect for students from India is that a lot of people speak English in Latvia, in contrary to France, for example. The only negative experience they could mention was the cold winter. When I asked what their fellow Indians should be prepared for if they opted for our university, the response was as follows: ‘Welcome to Latvia. Be open to cultural differences, take with you a warm outfit and be prepared to learn the native language. We like to study here, and so will you!’ Asked about their future plans after graduation the youth replied that they were planning to return to India and open a restaurant or a hotel, while some master programme students are expecting to stay in Europe or go anywhere else in the world in order to start their own business.
This experience of the Indian students was very useful for me during the meeting with the master and bachelor programme students of Vapi GRIMS College, when I was telling them about our university. The story about their fellow Indians having found such a small country for studies had certainly aroused interest in them, if not surprise. Their interest was evidenced by the questions asked. Apart from Vapi I also met with the high school, boarding school and college students in Surat, Vadodara, Baruch, Dhule. When assessing the students in India whom I had the chance to meet I should admit that they are very curious, smart, motivated and willing to study. Their questions about the purpose of our visit, education in Latvia and our university were evidence to that. As I was able to visit only five cities during my stay in India, I used the opportunity to tell about our school on the Gujarat radio channel FM 91.1 and to give an interview in the periodical ‘Times of India’.
I am looking forward to meeting students from Surat, Vapi, Vadodara, Dhule, Mumbai and other cities of India in our university next year!
This press release was prepared by
Anita Emse, Head of E-Project Department