Do you know where Wroclaw is? Well that is where college student Jan Zarski is from and he is studying in the United States as an exchange student. “I’m from Poland and I come from Wroclaw. Wroclaw is the city in Southwest Poland. It is the fastest developing city in my country and I decided to study and come to the United States because I got a scholarship,” he says.
“Actually, I am only here for one semester. It is an exchange program between the University of Wroclaw from my hometown and the University in Greenville, East Carolina University.”
Jan says getting the scholarship was very competitive, but he is glad he was selected. “The United States is regarded as a dream country to go to study because the higher education in the United States is one of the best in the world. Even in Germany it wasn’t so great like here of course in Europe we don’t have to pay for our studies probably that is why the infrastructure and the faculty members are not as good as here, but of course you can find a very good university and yeah it is hard to get a scholarship in the United States,” he says.
“My university has five or even seven exchange universities in the United States itself so we have American students coming to my hometown to my university and Polish students from my university going to the United States. Of course we have to be fluent in American English and you have to be experience and your grade point average (GPA) is the most essential in the competition.”
Jan says he has always been interested in politics so it was only natural to him to make that his major. “My major is Political Science and my specialty is Political Marketing. I’ve always been interested in politics and I like variety in my life and Political Science studies is like a combination of different fields of interests like Economy, Sociology, Psychology and Philosophy and of course politics. So it was real interesting for me so I wanted to study it, but my area of interest is really, really broad and I like to know a lot of things, I am very curious guy.”
Attending East Carolina University in Greenville North Carolina has been easy for Jan because he already has experience studying and traveling abroad. “First of all it wasn’t a problem for me to come here. Actually, it is my first time in an English speaking country, but I have some experience studying abroad my stay in Germany or a lot of travels around Europe, so I am used to being in an international company with international students.
I am also a member of different international student organizations so my stay here from the very beginning is really great and I have met a lot of interesting people and have a lot of new friends here and I like this university a lot. It is a really great school,” he says. “One thing which could be better of course is Greenville is a city itself because it is pretty small. I am use to living in bigger cities like Wroclaw more than six-hundred thousand citizens or Berlin when I spent one semester with more than three-million citizens.”
Jan is 24 years old. After completing his one semester here, he is in his final year back home and will graduate in July 2007. “I would like to work in PR (Public Relations) department in an international company probably because I speak three languages Polish, German and English so I would like to use them in my job and one of my dreams would be to work for my city Wroclaw very much," he says. "It is a very nice city, very fast developing and I would like to help promote it to help attract some new investors to come to our region,” he says. “I think I have some basic information about it and I have pretty much experience about it.”