Wir bauen Brücken über alle Ländergrenzen hinweg. Nicht nur durch unsere Outsourcing- und unser Developer-Relocation-Programme, sondern wir fördern auch junge Denkerinnen und Denker beim länderübergreifenden Austausch. Besonders freuen wir uns über die außerordentlich engagierten weißrussischen Studentinnen und Studenten, die uns dieses Jahr am Forum Alpbach 2019 begleitet haben. Begeistert hat uns der tolle und persönliche Erfahrungsbericht von Lizaveta Tsiareshchanka:
Hey! My name’s Lizaveta,
and I’m a common 19-year old girl from Belarus. Sometimes, however, extraordinary things happen to ordinary people just like me, you know, and I was so lucky to be chosen by good fortune this time ;). With this in mind, I’d like to tell you a story of my greatest adventure ever! Just prepare a cup of tea, take a seat in your comfortable sofa with soft pillows, and enjoy. ;)
This story started back in winter 2018, close to Christmas. We all know that there’s magic in the air at this time of the year :), and people eagerly do nice things for each other to make this period of time even better. I was not an exception because I wanted to do something special for other people who were waiting for a miracle as I was. That’s why I decided to participate in a famous gift exchange “Secret Santa” organized by Reddit for the first time in my life. I really enjoyed the idea of exchanging gifts with people from all over the world! My match was a 21-year old guy from Austria. I remember how carefully I had been preparing this parcel for him… I loved every step of the process. And when it was finally sent, I felt a great relief and joy at the same time because I knew that someone did the same for me as well. But they didn’t… My gift was lost or, maybe, not even sent…
I guess, guys, you’re really disappointed because I promised you an exciting story of the greatest adventure ever, and now I’m just talking about my failed “Secret Santa” exchange. Don’t worry, it’s just the beginning of it ;) I wanted to write this “foreword” just to show you how our kindness is always rewarded. Don’t be upset if you don’t receive what you’re waiting for. Something more exciting and wonderful will find you itself ;).
Coming back to our story! Some months passed after the period of New Year holidays, and it was already the second semester at University. As a common student, I was burning the midnight oil to prepare for my classes well. One night, I saw an ad on a popular website. It was said that the Austrian company Specific-Group, which has a development office in Minsk, is ready to sponsor 5 talented Belarusian students for their participation at the European Forum Alpbach. I looked at the requirements and thought that I should definitely try to apply for this scholarship. I prepared my resume carefully and just sent it on the indicated e-mail address from European Forum Alpbach. Each scholarship holder had to apply via online system and was selected by an independent jury.
I don’t know how many days passed after my application was sent, but on March the 27th I opened my letter box to check new messages, and I saw one which just draw my attention. It was the reply from the European Forum Alpbach. I opened it with my crazy-beating heart, and… I’m going to Austria this summer!!!
I immediately called my parents, my grannies… I was super happy!!! And returning back to the case of failed “Secret Santa” exchange, I’d like to highlight the fact that my gift from Austria finally was found ;)
I’m going to omit the detailed description of my preparation for this journey. That’s why we’re moving straight to the moment when I was sitting in the plane which was flying to Vienna. Frankly speaking, it was the first flight in my entire life… And I was really happy when we landed safe. In 3 hours, I had another flight to Innsbruck. You can imagine the feelings of a person who had never flown before and who had taken two flights in just one day. When I finally arrived in Alpbach, I had the impression that I was reborn ;).
The first thing I was astonished by was the nature. All those majestic mountains touching the sky and hiding beyond the clouds, all those meandering rivers with little waterfalls… I just fell in love at first sight. Besides, I really enjoyed meeting people from all over the world. You’re walking on the street, and you can get acquainted with representatives from totally different cultures. They all have their own cultural background and the way they approach people, but the most amazing thing is that all of them are ready to get in touch with something new and share their experience from other participants. I’d like to mention that the Organizing Committee did as much as possible to create a great social program. Parties, receptions, international evenings, pub quizzes (we won one of them, by the way) :).Thanks to this Forum, now I have friends from almost all corners of Earth ;)
The general topic of this European Forum was “Liberty and Secuirity”, and all the seminars and talks were created through this lens. I was impressed by the quantity of famous people here. There were a lot of Fireside talks with the Nobel Prize Winners, The UN advisors, Austrian politicians… And you just seat near them and can ask any question… Amazing!!! During the first week I had to attend one morning seminar (academic one) and one afternoon seminar (hands-on experience). I really enjoyed the first one which was called “The Economic Battleground”. As I’m pursuing a bachelor’s degree in IT Management, so studying economics and computer science both, it was useful for me, I’ve learnt so many interesting tendencies in today’s world. My afternoon seminar was called “Music – a social utopia”. I can’t even describe what exactly we were doing there, but we were having fun for sure producing different sounds with paper, stones, glasses… I also had the opportunity to sing in the choir at church. Unforgettable experience!!!
However, time flies… And now I’m sitting in the café, trying to remember all the things that happened to me in Alpbach in order to write this letter. I’m really sad that it’s over, but I realize that I returned home more mature and more experienced. I’d like to share with you 3 lessons I’ve learnt from this adventure:
- Don’t be afraid of failure! You can mess up today and keep falling down, but always get up to see what’s next. Just follow your dreams, and they’ll come true ;)
- Be open-minded and ready for a new experience! There are so many things to learn and to try in our world, you can’t really imagine. So, what are you waiting for?
- We are so different, but it’s possible to see eye to eye. Just be tolerant and curious about peoples’ culture. Talk to them, ask for advice and you’re going to conquer the highest peaks together!
Thank you for this amazing experience!!! Hope to see you soon in Belarus, Austria or at any other place on Earth (and even in a different galaxy) ;).