Dana Alsaialy

Dana Alsaialy
  • Motto: Stay curious about the world & honest to yourself.
  • Country of origin: Saudi Arabia
  • Situation: Student (currently studying in Czechia)
  • Higher education institution: Charles University
  • Field of study: Social Sciences
  • Level of study: Bachelor

What made you decide to study in Czechia?

Being half-Czech & half-Saudi, studying in the heart of Europe was an intuitive decision. After living my whole life in the Middle East, I was adamant about exploring a new city, ideologies, & cultures. Prague specifically is famous for its beauty, student life, & live-ability (great prices & transportation!). I have some favorite coffee spots for studying, found a great community of Arab friends, & love simply walking around the city.

Did your studies meet your expectations? How did you find the study programme, instructors, university facilities? Were there any differences from studying in your country?

I am in the 2nd year of my Bachelor's studies at Charles University, Faculty of Social Sciences. What I love most about the program is that it can be completed in 3 years with flexibility on pace, elective course selection, & student-professor interaction. Most professors are understanding, provide great feedback, & give students opportunities to fix their mistakes. Further, while I need to take subjects related to politics, economics, & statistics to complete my Social Science degree, I have ample room to select elective courses geared more toward my interests (healthcare, psychology, controversial thoughts, & design/art). As I studied at the high-school level in Saudi Arabia, it is difficult to pinpoint whether the difference in study styles is due to the change in the country & not the educational level. However, I would say that in Europe, or Charles University, speaking on your personal opinions is valued highly.

What was the biggest surprise with regard to studying or living in Czechia?

Perhaps how easy it was to figure out getting around Prague - the transport is truly a life-saver!

What was your most memorable experience or what did you enjoy most as a student in Czechia?

1. Finding a perfect study cafe 2. Hilarious stories with my friends that are best left private 3. Traveling easily to neighboring countries

How do you think your time in Czechia has helped your studies and/or your career?

I think it made me more aware of my interests, identity, & passions, as the education is holistic & the city is inspiring. There are also great opportunities within the faculty & outside - most of which do not require Czech proficiency!

Do you have any advice for students thinking about studying in Czechia?

1. Ensure that you research the university & program well because, unlike the States or other universities, you cannot change your major/field of study 2. Don't be afraid to e-mail; people are usually friendly & respond with helpful information 3. Be excited that you get to study in one of the most beautiful, young, & academically-rigorous countries