Один год в UWC Adriatic

First of all, I would like to express my sincere gratitude for giving me the opportunity to study in such a beautiful place such as Adriatic college in Italy. It is not only about continuing studying process abroad in the international atmosphere but also it is a great challenge to grow up as a person expanding the frames of your own mind and your Russian mentality. In short, this year was the most amazing in my life but at the same time it was quite difficult for me from time to time to adjust myself to the place where I live. However, I should start talking more in depth about this incredible experience.

UWC Adriatic is placed in a little italian village by the sea. Duino is mostly populated by Italian and Slovenian citizens and students from around 90 countries. Our residences where we live are dotted around the village, however, the longest distance between the houses would be within 10 minutes walk. The residence were I lived was girls residence with its own traditions and atmosphere. It was not big therefore I got to know people in my residence pretty fast and pretty close. I can say that it was a great advantage of that place. The number of first-years was almost equal to the number of second-years in the residence so it was great to get to know both. My roommate was from India. We started getting along from the first days and our friendship continued during the year. Although our cultures are really different we found common ground and similar interests so it was easy to understand each other.

When the school started I did not feel a lot of pressure. The subjects I chose were not completely new for me but the education system impressed me. I was never given so much freedom to express my thoughts and my knowledge! Even if the opinion was controversial, none fought against me and the teacher never said that it was not right. One of my favorite subjects in the school is TOK. I believe that every single student should take it in school and it should be introduced on a mandatory ground. There are a lot of talented and deep thinking students in my class so our discussions are always lively and interesting. Fortunately, our teacher gives us space to talk and share our opinions during the class. Usually they support students who start interesting discussions in a class through creating a friendly and comfortable atmosphere for everyone to feel free to share the thoughts on topic discussed.

I really enjoy the freedom we are given to share everything we feel like. It was quite hard in the beginning to handle this freedom when none would have told me when to start writing my essay or preparing for the test. It took me some time to learn how to allocate my time efficiently in order to combine both social and educational processes. It is a very essential skill in UWC because there are always a lot of things going on and it is hard to tear up yourself in order to be everywhere all the time. However, it is quite common that those people who focus only on one part of UWC life and put the other activities aside, regret about it after graduation. This is why I decided to try to get the most out of this experience through understanding how to schedule my life having time for everything I want.

Apart from the educational and social parts there are also CAS activities I had to leave my time for. My creative activity was singing and was scheduled for the 7th day in my timetable instead of the normal free block. It means that every 7th day of school (there is an 8th days schedule that repeats itself) I would have a personal class of singing with our teacher. Every month we had concerts where all of the musicians of our school performed something they had prepared for this event. I sang solo and duets most of the times. My singing classes used to give me so much energy and the life sense and it was really important to have some creativity in the daily life.

My another creative activity was drama. I took it as an additional one because I had classes before and drama was always a way to express myself and see where I lack confidence.  In the beginning of the year we were mostly making little plays every class but it was only a preparation for the big play we made in April. Our teacher proposed to make quite heavy in terms of the contest performance telling the story of the convicts in the concentration camp and focusing on the double standard attitude of the Nazi to the people in there. However, some of us did not like that play and proposed another one. After a long debate we came to the decision that the first play was the best for us. Since we did not have a main director who made the play, everyone had a right to choose and propose something new. Eventually, it brought us a great success and we were happy that everyone contributed to making it.

For the sport activity I chose swimming. Every Friday after school we took a van to the swimming pool in Monfalcone – the closest city to us. It was really nice to finish the week with swimming that was also extremely helpful.

I really enjoyed doing my social service and helping people who actually needed my attention. Once a week our social service group went to Trieste to help a local organization that provides homeless people with free food to distribute it. Apart from pouring tea into the glasses we practiced our Italian skills talking to the locals from Trieste. I was excited every single Friday to meet those people I became very close with and some new faces. Ukrainian lady who always asks me to bring her a polish chicken or an Italian guy who teaches me some new italian phrases every time I am there. It is hard to see how difficult their life is but it broads the frames of my mind and makes me realize that our life is incredible and we should value every single moment. Every single Friday I feel that I can make some people a bit more happier not only by giving them food but giving them my attention and a smile. Those moment usually helped me a lot to not only get out of the college bubble but to get out to real life problems and see how the world really works.

As I have already said it is hard for me to live without creativity in my life. Fortunately, apart from the concerts I took part in there were a lot of shows and cultural weeks where everyone could propose acts and make them. My favourite show among several was Eastern European! To be precise it was the whole week when we presented our cultures cooking traditional food, playing games and even speaking with worldwide known eastern european accent pronouncing “r” clearly. I organized many acts for the show and made a video about the stereotypes from our countries. Eastern European week was scheduled for the last week of January so we all started preparation during the winter break. That was very wise because it takes quite a lot of time to organize the whole week having only around 10 people who are ready to contribute to the show. Fortunately and unexpectedly it is considered now to be the best show out of all of this year. We improvised a lot and made it great because some people actually devoted a lot of their time to it and it was amazing to see people working together and having incredible time!

I am absolutely happy for this gift that life gave me. I found my close friends, learned how to overcome difficulties in education process and life in general. Many people find it difficult to leave the college and start life form the scratch in another country or go back home to the same people. However, I believe that these 2 year only make us stronger and fill the life with bright moments that will stay forever in our memory. So there we go! We all are off to our second year soon to continue making great memories and fighting IB for our own sake!



UWC Adriatic’17


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