Italian D.Calzoni: VMU has a modern system
What expectations and goals did you have before starting your studies. Why did you choose Lithuania?
After I finished my studies in Italy, I wanted to continue my academic education abroad and in English. Surfing the Internet, I found http://www.studyinlithuania.lt/, which allowed me to overview the many study programmes offered in Lithuania in English. I finally chose Lithuania because I had the opportunity to visit the country earlier and I was positively impressed by both VMU’s programmes and the city of Kaunas.
Why did you select to study International relations and diplomacy? What was your background of BA studies?
My BA background was in Foreign Languages, but with a focus on International Relations. Throughout my BA I developed a passion for International Relations and other subjects related with Political Sciences, therefore I decided to take the chance to continue my studies attending VMU’s programme in International Relations and Diplomacy. I thought it would be a great possibility to further my knowledge in International Relations at the same time as I could study such an interesting and wide subject in English.
Is Lithuania’s education system very different in comparison with Italian one?
Yes, Lithuania’s higher education system is quite different compared with the Italian one. The Lithuanian system is definitely more modern: firstly, in the relation between the university and the student, in Lithuania (or, at least, in VMU) bureaucracy is reduced to the minimum (which is any Italian’s dream!); secondly, in the organization of university activities, divided in lectures and seminars, with readings to be prepared for every seminar and papers to be written for nearly every subject, something that Italy’s university system still lacks. Also, the two systems are different because of the vast amount of courses taught in English that students can find in Lithuania’s university, which is one of the many reasons why it is possible to find so many international students, either Erasmus or full-time.
Was it challenging to go study abroad in a completely different environment?
Since I didn’t go on Erasmus, my two years in VMU were my very first study experience abroad. For this reason the experience was challenging, but I could say overall always in a positive way. At first it was difficult to study in a format that was very different from the one I always experienced (in Italian universities, most subjects are taught through frontal lectures, with little or no interaction by students); the same for the language, studying in English felt hard at the beginning. But with time it felt more and more natural and now I couldn’t think of another way to carry on my studies. I wish some features of the Lithuanian system could be implemented in Italian universities!
I wanted to congratulate you on successfully defending your master’s thesis and receiving your diploma. What are your plans for the future?
Thanks! For the future I am planning to look for a job in an International Organization and gather some practical working experience. In the long term, I would like to go for PhD studies.
What would you say to people who are still wondering whether it is worth it to study at VMU’s faculty of Political Sciences and Diplomacy?
I would definitely suggest to enroll, they will not regret it! In VMU they will find a top level environment for studying, plus an university that cares for its students; also, the quality of the courses that are taught is very high. In particular, I would suggest them not to miss the chance to enroll in one of the courses of VMU’s faculty of Political Sciences and Diplomacy because its professors and instructors are very well prepared and very available for students, always providing challenging and interesting lectures and seminars in very different subjects.