Class of 2023
I am still processing the two intense years I spent at UWC Robert Bosch College in Germany. UWC is everything but what you expect and very hard to describe for an outsider. Living in a community and sharing every single day with a beautiful collection of individuals from all around the world from different cultural, economic and social background changed how I perceive reality. All of us believe in education for peace and sustainable future yet everyone with a different idea of achieving it. This rare environment taught me to look from various perspectives even at the same time. My peers were inspiring teachers and the issues in the world became more real because I heard about it first-hand from a friend coming from that faraway place. The most valuable moments I treasure are the spontaneous hours lasting conversations about everything, the moments of excitement and struggle that shaped me. I feel very privileged to have the chance of attending UWC and now even more because I can continue to grow as a person and beyond at Lewis & Clark College.
Growing up on a farm, living close to nature back home in Slovakia as well as in Freiburg, Germany I purposely searched for a college that would be surrounded by the mountains, forest or the sea. Lewis & Clark seemed to be fulfilling my inner requirements and I was positively surprised about the academic program, well-developed psychology department, languages focus and interesting study abroad program and sustainability on campus. I´ve never lived in a big city and Portland appeared to be a very active and artsy urban place to live in.
I would like to major in Psychology and Spanish. Everyone sympathizes with an explanation of reality through a different discipline a bit more than through others. Analyzing my own thoughts, emotions, and reactions in a certain situation I found that looking through the lenses of psychology makes the most sense to me. In past years I dived more into mental health and illness and it´s stigmatized perception that´s changing nowadays. It inspired me to understand how human function not just to simply know but in order to apply the knowledge and help others with distractive behavioral patterns.
Moving from individual human behavior a to greater social structures I had the opportunity to study Social and Cultural Anthropology what further developed my interest in humanities. It taught me about the effect society has on an individual and vice versa and gave me the ability to apply theories on real-life social contexts. Understanding a language is a way to get closer to culture because some things are not translatable. I would like to learn at least one new language at Lewis & Clark. I find inspiration in the Arts. Subject of Visual Arts give me a platform to nourish my creativity and to materialize the ideas that cannot be express in the spoken language.
Outside of the classroom, I seek movement. Outdoor activities like hiking, horse riding or climbing fulfill my desire for an adventure. I combine my love for culture and acrobatics as a beginner in Brazilian martial art capoeira and yoga. As much as I am excited about mental and physical sustainability, I am very interested in environmental sustainability too. I am interested in permaculture and I am consistently trying to reduce my waste and CO2 footprint, but I am aware it will be greater than it could be by traveling to the US. I would like to focus more on structural changes because there is not that much time left.
The aspiration to study abroad at UWC and now continuing at L&C has roots in my desire to see the world with all the different ways people live and landscapes are created. I was lucky to travel around Europe in countries like Portugal, Spain, France, England, Scotland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Croatia, Italy, and Israel. Traveling nowadays became very consumeristic and even though during most of my travel I was staying at my friend´s place and I didn´t jump on commercial attractions it was still just for a personal pleasure. In the future, I would like to give more than take from people and places I will go to. In addition, I would like to focus on slow travel in order to limit flying and to immerse into the culture context as much as I can.
To Lewis & Clark, I want to come with no expectations but with eagerness and an open mind to learn and grow as a person through the unknown situations. Knowing there is and will be so much given to me I hope I can give back to the Lewis & Clark community. I am looking forward to Pacific Northwest becoming my new home despite being on the other side of the globe from my current homes.