Our testimonials: Christine

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Our testimonials: Christine

 

Meet our testimonials

Meet Christine from Uganda/Canada

Student of MA Human Rights and Multilevel Governance

 

"My most memorable experiences at the University of Padua were the moments shared with my classmates and friends that I made"

 

Meet Christine

About myself 

I am proud of my multicultural heritage and appreciation for diversity. I was born in Uganda, partly raised in Canada, and refined in Italy. I am a highly curious person with a steep interest in education and continuous learning. I have travelled extensively to improve my understanding of other cultures. I will try almost anything at least once before making judgements. My biggest fear in life is that in my old age, I will look back on my existence and wish that I had taken more risks, tried more things, and pursued more of my dreams. Therefore, I live authentically by loving myself unconditionally and treating others with the same respect as I'd like to receive. When assessing my academic and professional goals, I chose the University of Padua for my master's degree studies because of its geographical location, reputation, and opportunities for innovation.


   
    What did you like most about your time at UNIPD?    

My most memorable experiences at the University of Padua were the moments shared with my classmates and friends that I made. I am not a shy person so I approached people that I found interesting and learned a lot from them. Other noteworthy experiences included attending classes in the iconic Palazzo Bo, and founding the Student Engagement Team during the pandemic. UNIPD provided a unique environment that motivated me to take advantage of the opportunities offered through the Arqus University Alliance. Since the bulk of my academic career at UNIPD occurred during the pandemic, I had to make the most of virtual meetups and digital exchanges. Fortunately for me, UNIPD offered full ZOOM access for enrolled students, which reduced a barrier to connection.

   
    Have you taken part in any extracurricular activities organised by your programme and/or by the University as a whole?    

In my second year, I became involved in the Arqus University Alliance. I considered my relocation to Italy as my “Erasmus”, so I wasn’t keen on applying for study trips or study abroad opportunities. But, when the Benedetta Zatti from the Inclusion Sector invited me to contribute to Action Line 2 of Arqus I, the door to share my knowledge about diversity and inclusion was opened. Through the Arqus University Alliance, I met colleagues from Lyon, Bergen, Granada, Leipzig, Graz, Vilnius, and the other institutions that make up the alliance. I presented at the 2021 Arqus Annual Conference in Vilnius and travelled to Granada the following year for a similar purpose. As an alumnus, I briefly worked as an intern on the Arqus Student Agora alongside University of Minho to develop more spaces for students to contribute to the betterment of their universities. Although I have moved on to another career path in public health, I owe a lot of my professional growth to these sponsored opportunities. I recommend to all students to find a space at UNIPD in which they can build a meaningful network of colleagues with diverse backgrounds. Those connections can open a multitude of doors that will make your university experience even more rewarding.

   
    Tips on how to build a successful application?    

I hardly remember my application to get accepted into the master’s programme, but I recall doubting myself and my worthiness of acceptance. I was fraught with anxiety, but I applied anyway, submitting my application during the final hour of the deadline. I didn’t have a background in law, and I didn’t really know any European languages other than English. But, I knew that if I didn’t try, I would regret my inaction for a very long time. I now know that the risk paid off. The fear, anxiety and uncertainty taught me to process these natural human emotions just as I would any other human emotion – acknowledge, explore, be patient.

   
    Describe your whole experience in three words: what would they be and why?    

Exciting: I got to live in and explore a country that many only dream of visiting at least once in their lives. If that isn’t pure bliss, I don’t know what is.

Cumbersome: I could have done without the biannual visits to the infamous Questura. That, coupled with my lacklustre grasp of the Italian language, made life a tad irritating.

Life-altering: While in Padova, I reunited with my Italian family (a family in Cittadella that I have known as an au pair since 2017) and, a year before my graduation, I met my now fiancé in Vicenza. That one decision that I made to apply to UNIPD and overcome challenges even though I wanted to return to the comforts of Canada - that one decision changed my life for the better.

   
    How to prepare for an international experience? Tips, advices, motivations and so on    

If you are planning on relocating to Italy for school, please, please, please do yourself a favour and have a plan. Create a financial plan, create a time management plan, set short-, mid- and long-term goals. These seemingly supplemental tasks will make a huge difference in the long run. Consider these your risk assessment and risk management strategies.


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