I am Saba Ghasemlou a master student of analytical chemistry at the University of Tehran. Here is a brief story of my stay in Germany at Carl Ossietzky University of Oldenburg.
For me, it was a great chance to meet incredible people, an outstanding adventure to explore interesting places and a worthwhile experience to take instructive lessons. I do appreciate all these wonderful events. I found Germans kind, reliable, punctual and supportive. Almost whenever I asked them for a favor, I received a courteous reply. The first day, when I arrived at the university and approached the professor’s office, I realized that I had showed up out of blue in the middle of his meeting, so my face turned pale and I got so nervous, but the professor gently told me “Don’t worry! you are at the right time and right place”. I was also warmly welcomed by other colleagues and students that day. My supervisor, who is working as a post-doctoral researcher, clarified my work. I am so lucky to get familiar with a different approach of my master field. Now, I have a wider perspective to pursue my education for higher degrees.
The disciplines at the university were so helpful and didn’t harm the peace and friendliness. The presence of non-German students has created a multicultural atmosphere that I felt more welcoming and less homesick. From time to time they got together for an occasion and brought their self-made foods and desserts which was nice. Some Iranians were studying or working there as well. Hopefully, they not only had a beneficial contribution with others, but also had established themselves as determined and enthusiastic people.
For the first and second weekend I went to Hamburg and Hanover with a friend from Serbia. It was so pleasant to explore everywhere in the city on foot as we could see the old architecture of palaces and churches that mostly focus in down town. We talked over a lot of things and shared our information about history of Europe and Middle East. She told me she was so regretful to miss the interesting history of Iran. What surprised me most was the common customs and even words between Iran and Serbia. We believed deep down inside that once we belonged to one nation. For one weekend the professor arranged a mountain climbing tour. Some colleagues and he drove students to a city called Brocken. On our way toward the summit, we stopped several times to capture the trains passing nearby. We also visited the border between eastern and western Germany. The Brocken city itself was a nice place to stay. It was full of houses preserved their special style for a long time and were built by pillars in the form of a multiplication sign.
The landlady I lived with is an American lady who has been living in Germany for fifty years. Undoubtedly, She is one of the best things happened to me in my journey. As she is an English teacher she would correct my mistakes and helped me improve my English. Furthermore, I was so comfortable in her apartment that I felt like living in my own home.
If I had traveled as a tourist, I was only able to visit a few places for a couple of days, however this internship, in addition to its scientific benefits, gave me the chance of interacting with nice people from all over the world and managing everything on my own which boosted my self-confidence and experience.
Written By: Saba Ghasemlou
Tehran University – Faculty of Chemistry