BY NAUSHERWAN AZIZ (MAN/IV)
For most of us, a new role in life presents a variety of challenges and some surprises, too. Advice from someone who’s already been there can help get us through the rough spots. In the case of university students, who better than seniors to offer the benefit of their experience?
This week, Khaled Arabiyat, a fourth-year Economics student, has some words of wisdom for this year’s freshmen.Q. What advice would you give freshmen about the Bilkent experience?
The advice that I’d give to freshmen is that they should seize the opportunities in terms of the facilities and events that Bilkent has to offer. Overall, they should try to enjoy the country. For internationals, they should try to learn as much Turkish as possible, since they’ll have a lot more fun in Turkey because they’ll understand the culture and the country better.
Q. What’s something students should keep in mind throughout their time at Bilkent?
The main thing students should keep in mind is the fact that Bilkent is very hectic at times, it can be very draining at other times, and it can be very, very demanding as well. So it’s important to keep in mind that you’ve chosen to attend this university; you’ve taken the responsibility of being at one of the top universities in the world, so you might as well be up for that challenge. Try to gather the fruit of what you’re doing here as much as possible, because honestly, you won’t get this kind of opportunity anywhere else.
Q. Any tips or tricks to surviving life at Bilkent?
Learn as much Turkish as possible. Always ask Turkish people where they’re from, because every Turkish person comes from a different background, ergo they’ll tell you a different story, ergo you’ll understand the culture better. The second thing to keep in mind is to be open minded. Some things might be very surprising for you, others might be very different from what you were used to in your high school years, and you might find certain things to be the same as what you were used to before. So keep an open mind about everything.
Q. One word about your experience at Bilkent so far?