Why Transcultural communication was my good choice

Michaela Vápeníková

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Why Transcultural communication was my good choice



Why was Transcultural Communication my good choice? It gave me the practical fundamentals and it taught me that nothing is for free.

I will forever keep my good memories of studying of Transcultural Communication. There were some moments that were very hard for me personally. However, nice moments and nice memories prevail in my mind, they concern the courses, teachers and friends.

What I appreciated most of all was the fact that this study field considerably impacts also the practical sphere. A lot of people think that humanities are merely about theory and are not fruitful for practice at all. I cannot comment on other fields of humanities, but Transcultural Communication is really different. It also deals with practical issues and offers such courses as management or marketing. It is up to everyone then to decide how to use the information obtained.

I must admit that my ideas about studying Transcultural Communication were originally completely different. At first, I thought that I probably appeared in a “wrong” place. The beginnings were harder than I had expected. I had studied at a secondary vocational school oriented on floristic design and not at a secondary grammar school that would give me proper social and scientific fundamentals. I have always been rather a “creator“ than a “thinker“; I wanted to study and do something providing me with a chance to use phantasy and creativity. Already during my secondary school studies, I took several chances to travel abroad. The key event for me was one practical and artistic internship in France. There I made the decision to go on to study at a culturally oriented university, even though I knew it would be a real challenge. I hoped that everything would be much more about people than about formalities. One of the first lectures on social and cultural anthropology presented by doctor František Burda convinced me that I had not gone in a wrong direction. I could also listen to a great guest invited to that lecture, and suddenly I was sure that that was exactly what I expected from Transcultural Communication. Subsequently, a “sine wave” – once you are up, once you are down – started. There were moments when I was satisfied, there were moments when I struggled with the idea to give in.

I can still remember very well the moment when doctor Zdenka Sokolíčková informed us about the requirements we had to meet to pass her subject and to be awarded the credits. The requirements were so demanding that I doubted for a moment whether I would be able to continue my studies.  I am very happy today that I had to “fight” that time. When you start your professional career, the reality is actually the same. You often “jump on an already moving train” without having been trained properly, and you just have to struggle. Well, thanks to the fact that I had experienced tough moments during my studies, then, in my professional career (and also in my struggle with Social Pedagogy), I did not get shocked so much. The saying “hard on the training ground, light on the battlefield” proved to be true. Retrospectively, I evaluate positively the fact that studying at university gives you nothing for free. You are given nothing for free in your life either.

Transcultural Communication gave me a chance to develop myself and was beneficial for me especially in the sphere of development of my practical skills rather than of purely theoretical knowledge. Transcultural Communication provided us with guidelines related to presentations, and oral and written performances of a good quality. I really appreciated the fact that the teachers paid attention to our work and, above all, that they really read the essays we were writing. That was another thing that, I guess, was very beneficial to me. It was a kind of progress. And the main benefit? I dare to say that I was given the “organizing fundamentals”. Nowadays I organize events of a cultural and educational nature.  And the starting point was at the time when I was a 3rd year university student and I co-organized my very first event. Even though I was very worried about everything then, nowadays I cannot imagine doing anything else. I work as a coordinator in “Europe Direct Pardubice”, an Information Centre of the European Union, and as an administrative assistant in the sphere of tourist attractions of the city of Pardubice. I am in charge of two exhibition centres. My task is to run these centres and provide their programme contents. I organize exhibitions, their openings and their accompanying cultural programmes. My work is based on two key factors – on communication and culture. For one year, I even have had an opportunity to work in the position of the head of an information centre and also the manager of a tourist information centre. I am very happy for this experience. One of the strongest experiences gained during my studying of Transcultural Communication was also a great field trip to Berlin, within the framework of which we visited numerous galleries and were given absolutely perfect presentations and explanations just on spot. This is another advantage of this field of studies. You can travel abroad, participate in a field trip and you are offered a meaningful and very interesting programme!

Last but not least, you make friends for all your life :-).  Although I commuted to Hradec every day and I did not participate in all the extracurricular meetings and parties, I have a feeling that we were a perfect group. The best friends are still here, and I firmly believe that the perfect friendships will last for a long time.

And then there are the people who are the foundations on which everything is fixed. Perfect teachers. I really appreciate their knowledge, determination to work, wide scope of interest and language skills. It is great and extremely important that they want to pass on their knowledge. I remember each of the teachers, I can still recall their specific sayings presented in their courses. 🙂

I enjoy recalling the consultations aimed at my bachelor’s thesis, which focused on dance, which I have been obsessed with since my childhood. A lot of thanks to doctor František Burda for supporting me in choosing an unusual topic of my bachelor’s thesis and for having an understanding for my “passion” for contemporary and scenic dance. I still keep dancing and I never want to stop. I also express my big thanks for the great seminars on the world cinema. I really enjoyed watching the films and the subsequent analyses of them. Thanks go to Zdenka Sokolíčková for “loading” us with a lot and for organizing great foreign field trips, which were without a single mistake. Doctor Sokolíčková brought into the field everything we had missed before. Thanks also go to doctor Jana Karlová for her pleasant lectures. I enjoy recalling excerpts from texts on the genius loci and other topics. I thank to doctor David Bouma for a pleasant voyage through religions and for his great practical seminars. I really appreciate his ways of humorous and tactful tackling of really serious topics. I thank to Veronika Halamová for her presentations about European minorities and also for her valuable advice and simulations related to management interviews. Last but not least, I thank to Professor Tomáš Petráček for his broad insight into history, for making me aware of the fact that it is important to understand history in its contexts. Despite the topics being serious, we could even laugh during Tomáš Petráček´s lectures because his style of presentations is really attractive. I appreciate all the teachers´ great openness to their students. This is one of the factors which make Transcultural Communication unique.

I am happy that I chose this field of studies and I would change nothing. It was a good choice and fantastic experience!

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Why Transcultural communication was my good choice