At UWC you join a philosophy of love and tolerance
What were your first impressions upon arriving at UWC in Mostar?
My first impression when I arrived at UWC in Mostar were many happy and exited looking faces, too many new names and heat that I had never before experienced, except in the sauna! The welcoming and energetic second years certainly made it very easy for me to feel comfortable at my new home. Also the fascinating city of Mostar struck me with its contrast and uncommon beauty. The environment was something I had never before seen. I felt extremely privileged and lucky to be a part of something like this.
What do you enjoy most about life at UWC?
Ranking one aspect of the UWC life over the others is nearly an impossible task. UWC is a lifestyle; by coming here you join a philosophy of love and tolerance. You accept every single person for the way they are, without any prejudices. Living in a community this close you realise that there’s no room for discrimination or hatred. Being respectful, fair and honest are fundamental parts of the UWC experience. These are aspects I’ve learnt to value perhaps the most during my time at UWC in Mostar.
By being a part of this international student body, I’ve been able to learn so much. Debating about a political theory with a person with an entirely different perspective or sharing a room with a person from the other side of the world are rewarding moments at UWC; I’m sure I’ve learned more from my fellow classmates than I’ve ever learned from any book during my life. Living with these people is something I’ve enjoyed remarkably.
What’s been the hardest or most challenging?
Upon my arrival I thought the hardest thing would be to learn all the tricky names, but after a while I realised that this was not the case. Moving to a new country and to an entirely different culture is always challenging, especially at a young age. I definitely see myself as a family person and living faraway from my big family has probably been the hardest for me. But I must say that living in an environment like this has helped enormously with my growing up process and I certainly appreciate what I have with my family now more than ever before.
Another challenging thing I’d like to point out is the need of organising oneself at UWC. It’s truly an important skill everywhere, but especially at UWC due to all the different opportunities and activities offered here. By managing your time wisely, you allow yourself to get the best experience you can get at UWC. I’m sure a skill like this will come in handy not only now but also in the future.
What subjects are you taking?
I take History, Economics and English A2 at higher level and Physics, Mathematics and Finnish at standard level.
What other activities are you involved in?
One of the greatest features of the IB program is that it doesn’t solely require you to be active academically, but also pushes you to be an active member of the society you live in. This is thanks to the CAS system. For me, CAS was one of the main reasons why I wanted to come to UWC, as it gives a great opportunity to really help the ones in need of help.
Our school offers a wide range of different CAS-activities, ranging from ping pong to helping at a nearby refugee camp. The Services I’ve so far most actively participated in are our Ecology Group and Refugee camp group. As my Creativity I’ve had School’s Promotional Group and Model United Nations and in Action I’ve basically done everything possible, from football and rugby to skiing, yoga and climbing. Thanks to Model United Nations, I’ve not only learnt the first steps of being a politician but also I got to see another UWC school, UWC Adriatic. I was invited to take part in their MUN conference and I had the chance to witness at first-hand how the UWC schools are spread all over the world.
What are your ambitions after you leave UWC?
I have yet to decide what I’ll do after leaving UWC. Whether I’ll pursue a career in economics, politics or law, I’m sure that I’ll doors are open for me after this experience. No matter what I’ll do after UWC, I’m sure to keep the values I’ve learnt here with me for the rest of my life.