Balázs KovácsPick your winner in “My European Diary” Contest
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My name is Balázs Kovács. I’m from
Eastern-Hungary. In 2009 I spent six months in Northern Jutland, Denmark after I had applied for a CIRIUS
scholarship. I heard a lot about the famous Danish folk high school system and...
I intended to study in an international environment. I was seeking for an
opportunity to practice and improve my oral language skills.
First of all I started to find out all the relevant pieces of
information by using specified Internet sources and contacting the Hungarian
’Danish Cultural Institute’ as well as approaching former and current Hungarian
students, especially those who have already experienced studying in Denmark.
After the initial preparatory phase everything propelled me quickly
forward. Collecting and writing all the necessary documents and some e-mail
exchanges were to come. Then I’ve got the confirmation and finally I arrived to
Vraa in mid-January. Previously I knew only about one more Hungarian student to
attend the same school in that semester, so it was a surprise for me that there
were some more too – a lot. But Vrå Højskole is not just one of the drops in
the folk high school ocean.
It is the ultimate multicultural one. Not only did they provide the
tranquil atmosphere for learning and practicing photography, photojournalism,
Danish language and many more but those collective of teachers and instructors
also made sure their students would get the perfect platform for multicultural
learning of mutual understanding as well. Youngsters, I had the chance to meet
there, came from or were descent of Denmark, Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands,
Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Hungary, Canada, Poland, Germany, Sri Lanka, Nepal,
Ghana, Rwanda, Albania and Sweden.
The general way of communication was obviously English language. Thus we
had one thing always fixed. But everything else meant real diversity in its
truest sense. Having experienced living and studying in this multitude for half
a year I’ve learnt a lot about tolerance, patience, the different aspects of
effective communication and self-awareness – all of these in ’real life’. My
English has improved as well and I have got a lot of great new friends – not
just foreign ones but Hungarians too. Way too odd but totally true: I’ve also met
with a very distant but still blood-relation, a real relative of mine there –
for the very first time in my life.
I’ve definitely learned how precious it can be for one to be challenged
through living abroad. It is such a complex mixture of challenges on so many levels
of life that it surely leads to multiple improvements either in terms of
self-confidence, independence, tolerance and it clearly opens one up to new
horizons in life. These things really happened to me. I personally see the
world in a whole new light since then. In my opinion being able to experience
different ways of living/thinking/working enables one to evaluate the
advantages and disadvantages of each places he lived. Therefore one can be more
open-minded in general. All in all living, studying and/or working abroad is a
highly accelerated self-study as well as an intensive psychological ’course’
about human relationships and the world and if there is a chance, it is definitely
worth heading for it.
I personally am extremely grateful for all the people I’ve met in
Denmark as what I’ve experienced and learnt there will always remain a huge and
very useful part of my life – regardless of how often we interact since I have
Greetings to everyone!