What is it like being a student in the modern Croatia? We are delighted to welcome Ivo Jurcic from Rijeka, a philosophy student and blogger, who will be giving us an insight into student life. Welcome Ivo!
There’s a lot of talk about the lifestyle in Croatia – the pricing, the tourist destinations, football. But student life is a topic that rarely sees any daylight in any press. So what’s it like being a college student in Croatia? Sorry for the cussing, but it’s the most beautiful f***-up you can imagine. Since the Bologna Declaration, which Croatia has signed way back in 2001., the whole „studying“ process has been made extremely difficult. More than a decade has gone by and so far, nobody has gotten used to it. In fact, both the students and the college staff are mostly resistant to it, because all the process does is overwhelm everybody to the point that it’s either do or die, leaving you only with a Pyrrhic victory at the end of the semester death march. And the degree you’re left with at the end of the process is hardly good enough to get you employed. In Croatia, it’s the most expensive sport to participate in. For the last couple of years, the subsidies have literally been cut in half, thank you social government. That’s the ugly realistic side of being a student in Croatia, coming from a student.
There are some nicer sides, such as the idea that you’re actually studing stuff you’re interested in. The literature you have to go through isn’t some boring endless drag, it’s actually something you like. And there are always some amazing teachers who really make effort to keep you interested and make the whole process as painless as possible, cause once uppon a time, they were the ones sitting on your spot, asking silly questions and finding what’s torn and twisted in the education system. College profesors are either assholes with firm belief in unquestionable authority who really don’t spend much time wondering how to be a better teacher, or generally awesome people who just wanna pass down some knowledge so that you actually leave the institution as a smarter person. You’re being viewed as an adult, as opposed to being the kid undermined by authority in highschool. So you have that going for you, which is nice.
But despite this disaster lockdown that seems to be the final stage of the formal education cycle, being a college student is actually the best thing ever; it’s the next big stage of your life. This is the part of the article in which I’m going to talk about the psyche you get once you sign up for the ride. Realistically, where you get to be an adult, but without the grownup stuff to worry about. You’re left with the biggest dose of freedom and liberty of choices anyone ever gave you. Which is kinda awesome. You’re free to explore and mold the shape of your own personality, and there are hungreds of semi-adults, just like yourself. And you’re all stuck together and debating which direction should you go. That’s something no regime can ever put out, and it kinda makes the whole thing worthwhile. You might not get fully prepared for employment, but you get a bachelor degree in life.