American University of Central Asia - AUCA - SILC Awardees


Nikita Menshov

Ritual World, Philippines

Summer internship in theater Ritual World, Manila, Philippines Summer 2013 so far was the greatest summer ever, because I spend it in the Philippines, where I was invited to represent Kyrgyzstan in international theater play “Ritual World”. During the spring time I was looking for an international internship. I was lucky to find the only theater internship through AIESEC Global Exchange Program, which was in the Philippines. After a few month after I’ve found it, I went to the country that has change my entire life! I went there for a theater project “Ritual World”, the goal of which was to gather 5 international actors from different parts of the world and look at the rituals of the current days. The idea behind that was to show how shamans who summoned rain during ancient times changed to shamans of 21 centuries who have their own rituals. The cast of Ritual World consist of actors from: Philippines, Romania, Cameroon, USA and Kyrgyzstan. In the Philippines there were just a few people who have heard about Kyrgyzstan before, that’s why I invited almost all of my friends to visit Kyrgyzstan in the future. In total I stayed in the Philippines for 3 months. During first 2 months we were rehearsing and at the August we had 17 shows inManila. During all that time I’ve met so many wonderful people, including our amazing cast, production team, Philippines famous actors, directors, dancers and many others, who became friends of mine. Aside of the theater it was a huge traveling experience. A few places in the Philippines, that I’ve visited include: Palawan, El Nido - an archipelago of 1,780 islands; Boracay – the island with 4km white beach, Taal – the smallest volcano in the world. I would say that this experience gave me much more than I expected. And I would like to recommend everyone, who has the opportunity to travel – go for it and be amazed how wonderful and exiting our life is.

Kalys Zhumakadyr uulu

Semester exchange to Koc University / Turkey

AUCA has given me opportunities that promise to become a great value in my future career; while SILC grant made my experience at AUCA even brighter than I expected. This year is remarkable out of all in my university career as I did one semester exchange at Koc University, Istanbul. Going abroad is always a colorful and useful experience to have where every single day makes you grow and become a better person. Abroad, not only we have an opportunity to study at the finest university, but also meet other exchange students from all over the world, meet new cultures, share experiences, and simply have fun. Istanbul is extremely interesting historical city, which preserved its traditions and culture despite incredible economic development and modernization. Before coming to Turkey I set low expectations which I found far too low after arriving to the country, and was delighted from what I had experienced. The first few weeks I dedicated to exploration of the city with beautiful mosques like Sultanahmed, ancient ruins in old town, skyscrapers at Levent and party streets at Taksim square. At the end of days it was unforgettable to sit and have view on Bosporus, with a hot tea in the arms, Turkish baklava on the table and talk to your new international friends about their home countries and learn about the world. The next weeks, classes had started and I went to university. Meeting professors who studied at top universities of the world, had their own businesses, managed global corporations made my studies at Koc a special experience I never had before. The classes and seminars were not just theoretical, but were always backed up by relative and recent life story. Moreover, attending Entrepreneurship and Finance clubs helped me to decide on my future career in Finance. During the spring break I went to Iznik the city where Kyrgyz and Turkish soldiers fought together against the enemies in 11th century. After, I visited Pamukkale to relax on hot springs up in the hills with a view on the city. The trip ended at Bursa the production engine of Turkey. I finished the semester by working as a translator at the biggest business conference in Istanbul (TUSKON Trade Bridge), where I learned a lot how is business being done in Turkey. This semester has doubled the best moments in my life and gave me guidance for my future career. We only have four years as students and we must get as much possible from life and education as possible. So, stop reading around – try, apply, go and have study abroad experience!

Asel Baidyldaeva

Semester exchange to Hannam University/ South Korea

Invaluable experience for my shining future! This year I had an amazing opportunity to go for a semester exchange to South Korea. I applied for Hannam University as I wanted to explore the korean culture and their style of life. Living there for half a year, I could not stop admiring this nation more and more! I found that this country has a lot to offer! The inspiration for making my mind to go for half a year to a foreign country became the exchange students we had in AUCA, and international volunteers who came by AIESEC to our country. As I was the reception coordinator of AIESEC Bishkek, I had felt lots of young people seeking for adventures. I saw them coming to Kyrgyzstan, adopting new culture, new people, and challenging to explore totally new atmosphere. And one question came up: why don’t to challenge myself too? Academic life in Korea is very interesting, even though is more difficult. There is strict competitiveness between students because of the curve system. I liked how students were preparing for classes: all gathered, read, explained, did exercises together. I could always ask questions from classmates if I did not get about subject. However, during the exam, everybody was for himself. Korean students are crazy about studying: too honest, too hardworking and too conscious! During the midterms and finals, students do not sleep; they took pillows and toothbrushes with pastes with them to library ( some prepare in McDonalds - crazy, right?!) It was a great pleasure for me to study in such an atmosphere, and unconsciously I started to compete with them, do my best to keep up with their temp. And the result was achieved: only A marks in a transcript. :) Korean culture is about studying and working hard. However, weekends are only for rest. There have been organized plenty of field trips, visiting of sightseeings for students and professors. These gave me chance to visit almost 15 cities and one island of Korea. In addition, I got acquainted with community of kyrgyzstani students studying in Korea. Together we presented Kyrgyzstan on the concert of International students, and on a cultural and sports festival organized by Ministry of Foreign Affairs .Also, this community volunteers in hospitals: caring about children from Kyrgyzstan before and after serious operations, as they mostly come without parents. I liked the organisation of this voluntarily initiated process. This semester has broaden my vision of life. I got academic knowledge from korean perspective. I got personal experience through living and adapting in totally different society. The most important is that I realized how education is important, and how more opportunities we have being well-educated. AUCA gives us world level skills, and I experienced it myself, being well-competitive with the classmates. I understood what I want from life and what I can do for that. This was my starting point for the shining future!

Aman Djumabaev

Tübingen, Germany

University of Tübingen The Summer Semester of 2013 was one of the enriching times in my personal and academic life. Eberhard Karls University of Tubingen has become a great experience to engulf myself in strict German social system and ongoing educational excellence. University of Tubingen is located in the south of Germany in federal land of Baden-Wurttemberg. It is considered as a city of students, because one in ten people living here is a student. Never in my life, have I met such a diverse international community stretching from Eritrea in Africa until Republic of Khakassia in Siberia. It is interesting to see how each student using theirown space in the much bigger community. In 2012, University of Tubingen has been elected into German Universities Excellence Initiative thus making it one of the top universities in Germany. Subjects such as medicineand humanitiesare best known for their curriculum. One aspect I would like to clarify that many of my friends at AUCA asked is that whether I had a summer school. No, in Germany and some other parts in the West, the semester takes place at two different times. Unlike in Kyrgyz Republic, the semester in Germany is divided into winter and summer with each lasting 4 months or so. Studying at Tubingen “generates” a lot of German as well as international friends. But also luckily I had a chance to find many Kyrgyz students not only in Tubingen but all over Germany. Kyrgyz community tries to be active throughout the year by organizing different events. Therefore Kyrgyz Republic is well known in Germany, especially in the faculty of ethnology, where I have studied. Each year at least two students from here go to Bishkek for exchange. Among many things, first they do is to learn Kyrgyz language. It was a great pleasure to find many students speaking Kyrgyz so far away. Another interesting highlight in my exchange semester is that half of my courses are in German language making it sometimes hard to handle. But my language courses in Bishkek and at University Campus made possible to attend courses at an advanced level.My studies compromised of series interdisciplinary courses mainly in the field of ethnology and organization. Understanding business from ethnological perspective and applying it at practice. "Exerience is not what happens to you, it is what you do with what happens to you.” These words were written by Aldous Huxley. First time I read them in 2009 at the departure date from USA. Already then, I had some traces of what I want to do with my experience at homeland. Therefore,m y experience today is an indispensable skill tomorrow."

Nadia Pak

Astana, Kazakhstan

"I have attended the fourth meeting of Advisory Councils on protection of consumers' rights in Astana last June. It was truly fantastic experience. I was assisting Mr. Asanbaev (the director of Chui region for regulating advertising activities and protecting consumers' rights at the agency antimonopoly regulation) with his presentation and learned a lot about the alike activities all over CIS. Mr. Onishenko (director of Rospotrebnadzor in Russia) was the chairmen of the event. I have been introduced into the practices of antimonopoly agencies all over the post-soviet counties which significantly contributed into my research for my senior thesis. After the conference, I clearly defined the goals of my senior thesis research and even know the step by step sequence of writing process"

Sociology 110 students

Osh, Kyrgyzstan

"First of all I would like to thank SILK (Student Intellectual Life Commitee) from the name of my group for giving us this wonderful opportunity to conduct our 2nd internship in the Osh region. For many of us it was the first trip to such a diverse and interesting region. As a general feedback about this internship, I would say, every one of us enjoyed being in Osh and happy of receiving this opportunity to make a research in collaboration with our professors. This was a completely new experience, full of meeting new people, learning about their lives, discovering new topics to be researched. A special thanks to our professors, who supported us in every challenge we had, giving us constructive feedbacks and help. Every student had an individual topic to learn and discover which were either chosen by a student or suggested by professors. Working individually helped every one of us to broaden the understanding of society as a whole, as well as improve our research skills. The circumstances challenged many of us to try finding new ways to get the trust of people. All this is reflected on the following feedbacks by my group mates: “AizhanKasymova: Field works in Osh were very productive and interesting. I was making a research on the topic of “K-popers” (Korean pop culture lovers who are wearing clothes and doing make up like South Korean celebrities), I wanted to learn how K-pop lovers in Osh are surviving in a very conservative atmosphere, also how Muslim population react on them. The field work that I had in Osh was very intensive: we had to work very hard every day, because of the limited time. Every evening we gathered in the adviser’s room sharing the information we have found and problems that we have faced during our observations and interviews. I enjoyed my days in Osh, firstly because it was my first time visiting this region and I was curious about everything.” “Evgeniya Li: First of all, I had never been in other cities except Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan; therefore for me visit to Osh was something new and explorative. One week before going to Osh, our professors and students were discussing each topic and helping each other to prepare themes for future research. For that reason I searched information about Osh city and founded interesting articles about the city events. I decided to choose “bazaar” as my study field. According to Clifford Geertz (nd) “bazaar is more than a materialized and capitalized place; it is a social place with specific methods of communication, cultural and eligious place”. Therefore this interested me a lot and I wanted to observe the Osh city bazaars and see how these relations are going in there. At the same time I drew a social map of the bazaars and the surprised findings I explored. This internship was the brightest practice during our studies, because I studied how to work in team, overcome different issues that can occur in fieldwork and develop my knowledge and skills.” “BegaiymTurdalieva: The topic of my project in Osh city was “Understanding the concept of Mahalla among city dwellers in Osh”. I investigated through which dimensions the concept of mahalla was constructed and shaped and understood by city dwellers of Osh. I did in depth interviews among people in Osh, mostly among Uzbeks. It was also interesting to see how people describe mahalla after the ethnic conflict in 2010, which left negative and sad memories to all people and when asking what mahalla means to you, many of them touched the issue of this conflict and tried to choose “correct” words while answering to my questions. This internship was very productive, making us to be an individual social investigator by working independently, finding the ways to get the trust of people, interviewing them, getting to know the way they live, work in a team, and being a leader of your own. Also, trip to Osh has a big impact to our close future: to some of us it gave ideas/ topics to our upcoming senior thesis and the process of writing the project or thesis; no doubt that the knowledge and skills we gained in this internship will be used in our future career." Shukhriya N.

Iuliia Tokareva

EuroXpro, AIESEC conference, Izmir, Turkey

EuroXpro is the biggest international AIESEC conference held in the Central Eastern Europe & Western Europe & North America Region, It is a 7 days conference. EuroXpro is one of the 5th biggest annual AIESEC conferences globally, hosted by different countries every year and attracting global partners and global AIESEC executives. This year EuroXpro took place in Izmir, Turkey from 11th to 17th April 2013. Conference managed to gather 290 youth leaders from 67 countries. The main goal of the conference was to bring together the young leaders from across the world to build new strategies for further development of AIESEC, creating a global network & partnership. These 7 days were filed with intense training sessions were delivered by world companies and global AIESEC partners such as Microsoft, DHL, PwC, TATA Consultancy and the global Leaders of AIESEC. Acquiring new knowledge, sharing international experiences, goal setting, and constant interaction had significant impact on each delegate’s personal and professional growth. As a result of the conference Kyrgyz Delegation managed to conduct successful negotiation with more than 20 countries and establish country cooperation agreements. These agreements guarantee high quality of internship based on the established international measures of service quality, including the free provision of food accommodation. These will allow our local Kyrgyz students to be easily accepted to the internship, receive assistance on visa and many other organizational procedures. The conference provided a unique opportunity to share new ideas on social and economic projects across the world. Many of those ideas were taken into consideration and will be implemented in Kyrgyzstan. Therefore, the country cooperation that was signed will significantly ease the process of recruiting the interns for our local social projects. AUCA students are one of the most active in AIESEC, most of interns are coming from AUCA and the majority of leadership positions in AIESEC are taken by AUCA students. Therefore, the knowledge and connections that were gained and that will definitely be share will increase the overall performance of AUCA AIESEC members, will ease the work on projects and will make these projects more effective and more beneficial for the society. Unfortunately, it is a common attitude that Kyrgyzstan is not well known as a country. Therefore, participation of the delegates from Kyrgyzstan on such huge conference brings it is impact on recognizability of the country. One of the main conference events was the cultural fair, called Global Village, where each country has an opportunity to present its unique culture. This year cultural fair that gathered around 1000 visitors. I can proudly that Kyrgyz delegation prepared one of the best presentations. We managed to stand out and attract a lot of curious attention. This successful performance also assisted to further country cooperation and global networking. The participants of the conference were all leaders, current and elected vice-presidents of AISEC, people, who will lead this organization forward. I was impressed by the incredible energy the conference was filled with, this incredible passion, dedication to AIESEC and strong belief that we all can change the world. After this conference I finally saw how huge AIESEC is and how huge of an impact its brings on the whole world. I believe, that we all united across the world can provide life-changing international experiences to our interns, help them grow as leaders and be the agents of change when inters come back home. Thank you SILC for providing me this opportunity to be a part of EuroXpro. I can’t find strong enough words to describe my gratitude. This conference had a huge impact on me. I fill so energized and motivated like I have never felt before. Now, I am ready to start my term in AIESEC as vice-president and serve my country. I will make sure that AIESEC will keep working more efficiently on developing youth leadership potential and move our country forward. “Believe, together we achieve”

Dildekan Kulumbetova

International Student Festival in Trondheim, Norway

Kulumbetova Dildekan participated in International Student Festival in Trondheim,Norway, a global event, which occurs every 2 years. She has participated in the workshop ”Finance” together with 30 students from among the world. The workshop has consisted of a variety of methods to approach the theme. Work methods have been discussions, debates and game activities. The methods have been related to different themes within finance; financial crisis, trade, development, power, politics and ethics. During these 10 days she received mass of positive emotions, was impressed by different cultures, enhanced her knowledge of economics from lecturers from all around the world, obtained information for her continuation of study and got new friends. Over 450 international students were gathered by group of local students of Trondheim. Each day of 10 days had its own topic. At the first day participants had an introduction to finance, made some brainstorming of financial activities and described financial situation of each country. Dildekan’s group consisted from 25 people from different countries and each of them shared with his/her opinion and possible solutions to the problems they had. Second day was devoted to financial crisis and participants had an opportunity to listen to economist David Marty, who opened to the participants the new side of participatory economics and possible ways to come to it. Next day participants discussed Trade through playing economical game in groups. Other days were devoted to Development and Power, where the participants discussed and had debate about the role of microfinance and its possible ways for improvement in each of their countries. “After finishing this program I realized the sphere in which I would like to work and make my own contribution: energy sector. After visiting Norway and seeing their prosperity I believe that by a proper investment and management a little country can prosper and develop. I could see many similar features between Kyrgyzstan and Norway and I hope that I will be able to contribute to the economy of my country. I also found university in Norway where I would like to continue my study of Master’s degree and I hope I will be able to implement my plans. I would like to thank SILC committee for great opportunity to be part of ISFIT 2013, which changed me and my vision of the world,” Dildekan said.

Nurmukhamet Karaev, IBL and Adilet Emilev, ECO

International Debate Tournament “Kimep 2013”

Nurmukhamet Karaev, IBL 111, and Adilet Emilev, ECO 111, participated in international debate tournament “Kimep 2013” in Almaty city, Kazakhstan on March 16-17. Since one of the main characters of tournament is that it had educational background, students have got lot of knowledge about the new strategies of winning in debates and statement of different spheres of life in Kazakhstan, by virtue of tournament and the resolutions of debates itself. “This trip was the first time when I had been in the international event, and it gave me a lot experience and skills not only in the way of participating but also organizing debate tournaments themselves. This trip gave us a lot: new knowledge, feelings, and a fair amount of surprise,” Nurmukhamet said. “We think that this trip has given us the opportunity to once again see how much we owed to his university and the people who study here, especially our friends from debate club and our trainers. This trip gave us a lot of emotion, energy, and above all faith in the success of future efforts. We believe that in the near future we will return to those and other new places with the new forces and achieve victory and win the Cup,” Adilet said.

Asylbek Dzhapashov

Central Asian and Caucasus Congress in Tbilisi, Georgia

Asylbek Dzhapashov was granted a chance to participate at the Central Asian and Caucasus Congress in Tbilisi, Georgia. The Congress was held during 3 days between 6th and 9th December at the Free University in Tbilisi. The main goal of the CAC Congress 2012 was to bring together leaders from more than 5 countries such as Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Tajikistan in Georgia to share the experience of a leader and implement a new strategy to promote social and professional internships among these countries and to the world as a whole. It is the big event AIESEC has in its educational cycle, where the participants gathered together to plan joint projects in economic and social sphere, based on global internships program and according to CAC sub-region and World community requests. Mentioned goals were achieved through sharing the experience of the representatives of five countries. Since every country had its own approach of introducing their countries every delegation had learned different creative ways of representation. As final decision it was concluded to unite the five countries under one name Central Asian and Caucasus region. The decision was taken in order to give our counties higher chances of becoming the places where the students from all over the world can come and get interned. Each country will put an effort to inform future internees of the various options to be placed in different parts CAC region. This fact will lead to a higher participation of international students in internships in CAC area and Kyrgyzstan in particular, leading to the more integrated work between Kyrgyz students and students from various foreign countries. “The event enriched my experience and improved my skills of a leader,” Asylbek said. Beside the general goals that were achieved, the delegates from Kyrgyzstan managed to cooperate with Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Armenia, and created a Joint Agreement. The agreement is implemented to encourage students to get interned in agreed countries through the means of provision of free accommodation and meal. In addition, by the end of internship term students will have a chance to visit every country of Joint Agreement and share experience and time with AIESEC’ers. Asylbek learned the Georgian customs and experienced their culture. His stay was high lightened by visiting places such as Old Town Tbilisi, Sioni Cathedral Church, Metekhi and Tsaminda Sameba cathedral. “I was amazed by warm atmosphere and friendly environment. On the other hand I shared my culture as well. I made presentation about beautiful Kyrgyzstan. Many students were fascinated by nature and mountains of Kyrgyzstan and I expect to have many students to visit my country,” Asylbek said.

Zukhra Iakupbaeva, ICP

Rome Model United Nations 2013 conference

Zukhra Iakupbaeva, a student in International and Comparative Politics department, had participated in Rome Model United Nations 2013 conference, which took place in Rome, Italy. It is a role-playing game in which each pair of students has the task to carry out likely the political positions of one of the UN member states through specific proposals on the issues in the agenda. The goal of the conference was to bring young people to the biggest conference in Italy and discuss the global issues. Participants of the conference had core debates. Zukhra represented Greece. Each delegation was given two minutes time to deliver its speech toward the committee. Zukhra was in General Assembly committee discussing the Millennium Development Goal # 1 – “Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger.” After that, the participants wrote a position paper. A position paper is two-page long paper saying about poverty and hunger situation in a specific country, in Zukhra’s case – in Greece. While writing a paper, there has to be a good research being done before to get to know the “country” properly. "One of the advantages, I possessed from the conference, is that I became a specialist in economic and political problems of one of the European Union member – Greece. Before, I did not know the reasons and roots of a big economic crisis Greece is facing now,” she said. On the fourth day of conference, Zukhra joined Eastern-European block of countries (countries of European Union and Eastern Europe), where the participants were working on their resolution paper. Each country of this block had to develop with the three ways of possible solution of how to eradicate poverty and hunger. There were three big blocks in the General Assembly of RomeMUN 2013: Eastern-European, African, and South-Eastern. By a simple majority of delegates’ votes the resolution of African block was passed successfully. Zukhra’s team work was also encouraged by the Chair of GA. By the end of the conference delegates were given certificates as participants. Advantage of conference was not only in the interesting speeches of other delegates about the issue in their countries, but also in interesting guest speakers, such as Staffan deMistura, a Minister of Foreign Affairs of Italy, Dr. CorradoClini, Italian minister of Environment, Land, and Sea, and many others. According to the participant, she has learned several important things from the conference: - To deliver a speech in a diplomatic way - To feel the atmosphere of international community - To establish worldwide contacts with other delegates “I thank SILC, which gave me opportunity to meet political figures of the UN, to meet with interesting and brilliant delegates, and to be together with the active youth of the world,” Zukhra said.

Nasiba Amanova, ICP

NATO International School of Azerbaijan (NISA)

Nasiba Amanova, a senior student in ICP department, got SILC travel grant and visited NATO International School of Azerbaijan (NISA) in Baku as a participant of winter school and conference on “Challenges to the Security in the Caspian Region” subject. The goal of the conference was to provide a platform for scholarly discussions of international affairs in the Caspian region. 20 Azerbaijani and 20 international scholars were the participants of this conference. Guest speakers of the event were prominent scholars, diplomats, politicians, and ambassadors. Participants also had a great opportunity to gain awareness about the historical and cultural heritage of Baku. “For me the conferences of such international scale are explicitly important. Most of the participants, guest speakers, who came from the US, Spain or Bosnia for instance, has never met any Turkmens. I was honored to represent my country and my university; to share my culture and tradition during culture night and beyond. Also, for Turkmenistan to be isolated from outside influence, I have made my personal contribution. To fulfill the responsibility put on me as a future leader of my motherland, I thank SILC Open Doors Grant for supporting me in my lifetime goal of bringing Turkmenistan to international arena,” Nasiba said. NISA gives different opportunities to students, young researchers and professors to visit this school as a part of sessions, conferences, studies, and essay competitions. NISA covers half of travel costs, meal, accommodation, and city tours. To apply to NISA session applicants need to fill the application form and write a short essay on the given topic. Students, graduates, and professor can apply to this session.

American University of Central Asia
7/6 Aaly Tokombaev Street
Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic 720060

Tel.: +996 (312) 915000 + Еxt.
Fax: +996 (312) 915 028
AUCA Contacts