Studying at WU Vienna, without being there physically. Does this work out? It does!

This year, everything’s different: travel restrictions and distance learning are more present than we wished they would be. But thanks to Digitalization, the semester at WU Vienna started in a different way, but smoothly. Several international students started their study programs at WU Vienna from their home desk. But what does it feel like to be a student at WU Vienna without ever being physically on site? We asked BBE student Rauan from Kazakhstan, who started his program with “conditional admission” about his experiences.

WU Blog: Where do you currently live?

Rauan Gabdullin: I live in Nur-Sultan(Astana) in Kazakhstan.

WU Blog: What was the main reason for you to apply for the BBE program at WU Vienna?

Rauan Gabdullin: As WU combines different perspectives on business trends and challenges, I am convinced that it is a perfect place for me to pursue my undergraduate studies. I am drawn by the freedom of choice given to students and university assistance in academic activities. Also, as Vienna is one of the entrepreneurship hubs of Europe, there is a great chance to meet and interact with other motivated and self-driven people, which can also contribute to my personal growth.

WU Blog: How did you feel about the admission procedure for the BBE program and how did you prepare for it?

Rauan Gabdullin: The admission process was stressful. I mean, not the exam itself but the tension during the pre-exam period. As the exam was held online this year, due to COVID-19, I could not see other students, who are applying too. It made me stress on the uncertainty of who my “opponents” are. I started to prepare for the entrance exam as soon as I was informed that my IB Exams were canceled. I dedicated about 6 hours per week to go through all materials thoroughly.

WU Blog: How do you communicate with your fellow students at WU Vienna? Have you already found friends?

Rauan Gabdullin: Mostly via WhatsApp and Teams. What about friends, I had not previously experienced the “online friendship” thing but I’ll make some friends as I am in Vienna. So, yeah, no friends yet.

“My study would become more versatile as I would discuss with other students or lecturers about the study content.”

WU Blog: What are your experiences with distance learning at WU Vienna in general?

Rauan Gabdullin: Generally, very flexible. I’m getting used to having snacks during the lectures. Hope to call it a day when I will finally be able to attend on-campus lectures because I find it inappropriate to eat a big plate of Tashkent pilaf during the class.

WU Blog: Have you ever been to Austria or Vienna before? What do you expect the city/ the country to be like?

Rauan Gabdullin: I conceive Austria as a country with beautiful nature, outstanding people, and a flourishing community. Living here for my college years would make a leap forward in my moral and academic developments.

WU Blog: What do you expect studying at WU Vienna (in person, on Campus WU) to be like?

Rauan Gabdullin: My study would become more versatile as I would discuss with other students or lecturers about the study content. Also, I could meet up with others and have fun out of class. I hope to find a balance between studying and chilling.

WU Blog: What are your future plans – will you come to WU Vienna as soon as the travel restrictions are gone?

Rauan Gabdullin: 100%. I don’t want to spend my college years online. I’ll try to do my best to arrive in Vienna as soon as it’s possible.

What is a “conditional admission”?

“Conditional admission” is an enrollment option that allows international students to start their studies at WU in the 2020/21 winter semester without being physically present, due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions that are in place. The entire selection and admissions procedure was handled online. Over 150 first-year students from 22 countries (from Colombia to Jordan, from Guatemala to Russia) have taken advantage of this option and are now starting one of our English-taught programs (bachelor’s or master’s) from abroad.