My Journey to BI: From Ukraine to Norway

Name: Ivanna Demchuk
Degree programme: MSc in Business – Major in Finance
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Finance and Credit
Undergraduate University: National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy
Hometown: Lokachi, Volyn region, Ukraine

Motivation

I first heard about BI Norwegian Business School from my groupmates at my undergraduate university, since their friends or even relatives studied at BI. Then I attended a presentation by BI where a school representative told about educational programs, admission requirements and scholarships. Before this meeting, I did not know that the BI is a partner university of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy.

I decided to go to BI because I have heard a lot that Norway is a country that knows how to properly use resources, to be a leader in various environmental initiatives and to make its inhabitants happy, which has led Norway to be recognised as the happiest country in the world. That is why I wanted to find out myself in this country. From other Ukrainian students, I heard that BI is a place where you can discover your potential, improve professional abilities, learn how to find the best solutions for solving economic problems, real business challenges and how to interact with other people in group work.

Moreover, despite the difficulties in studying, I expected that BI will be able to give me the complexity of subjects, practical application of the acquired knowledge that I can implement. Since BI is one of the top business schools in Europe, I decided that it will support me to continue my studies at a decently high level, which is competitive among other universities.I believe this will help my career by being close to the business community and obtaining knowledge that I can bring to my home country.

Academic Experience

The best piece of advice I can give to a new student about my programme is to find the goals that you can attain during studying at BI and to form a schedule. It’s important to know how to have time to study compulsory subjects in conjunction with that which brings you the most pleasure.

I have been challenged by the speed at which you have to be involved in the studying process. So sometimes I felt tense and stressed through a pace in which I should combine studying and usual life.

International Experience

The biggest culture shock for me moving here was Norwegian attitudes towards their way of life. All people are considered to be individuals who need space so even at stops, people are far from each other to enjoy their own space.

The most remarkable experience I have had so far is the fact that despite the closed nature of Norwegians, they are quite helpful and ready to support you even if you were not well acquainted.

The one thing you absolutely must do while living here is climbing to the top of Vettakollen to see a sunset and enjoy the view of Oslo. Furthermore, you will experience hiking that is weighty part of the merger with the Norwegian nature.

The scariest thing about moving away from home was fear that I would not find myself in a foreign country and will be perceived as a stranger.

Reflections

The most remarkable and interesting thing I learned about myself at BI so far is that despite the stressful situation, I managed to respond to different situations quickly and continued achieving my goals.

My career goal is to develop leadership skills, improve communication skills and become an expert in the financial sector.

Ivanna started the MSc in Business programme in August 2018. To find out more about the programme, go to www.bi.edu or email myfuture@bi.no.

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