Thursday, September 27, 2012

UIST from the view of an international student

Dear Professor,

First of all, I want to express my appreciation for what you've written via your blog. As an international student living and studying in Macedonia, I have found it very frustrating to see my favorite professors either leave or disappear into nothingness, the procedures at UIST are unnecessarily time-consuming and confusing, and staff here manage like its their childhood amateur gameplay.

I've come to a fact that this institution has received a considerable amount of funding from your government, not to mention an average annual amount of 3000 euros paid for each international students to come here, it's beyond my expectation the staff at UIST is using it in an ineffective, unprofessional, and in the most personal way. I've several bullets to share with you:

  • Professors don't expect students to be interactive in class anymore. They just talk and talk. New-coming professors often find it surprising students stay inactive in class. I myself after one year have turned into the worst kind of student ever: don't go to lecture, go to lecture and read books (I can't make out what the professor is talking, their English is ether ultra-localized or isn't good at all), never do my homework because no-one cares...
  • There is only one library, which is like 15 meters square. Internet is inaccessible everywhere at UIST (amusingly speaking). No-one bothers going to the library to study. Self-study is a weird definition for UIST students now.
  • International students are admitted by a quota level. This year there are 30 who are granted the scholarship. The scholarship committee may have done it in a strange way, or I'm the only one who find that students aren't up to a specific level of English proficiency (some barely knew any English words upon arriving here), their academic performance is not sufficient for study in higher education (> 50% failed Maths, Physics). 
  • Documents in English like transcript, student certificate are poorly translated. Errors are a lot. This is unacceptable since these documents are used for various things like visa application to EU countries, scholarship application, etc. One student tried to transfer to US yet his credits at UIST were not accepted for these poor translations.
Though I've tried to contact the staff several times to discuss these matters with them, 100% of the times my emails got ignored, my in-personal contact received never-ending promises. As one of the top 5% students with good performance at UIST, I find it disappointing and discouraging to further my study here.

Just want to share with you,

PS: My name is .... I'm a ... who received the scholarship from Macedonian government to study in Ohrid. Though at first I got so excited to be granted this opportunity, after one year of suffering (I'd say), it is my wish not to let any ....  fellows be in the same situation.
PPS: You can share this message via your blog. I'd prefer you don't include my identity to avoid further nonsense. I've one year left only :-).