My name is Linda Selmani and I am 22 years old. I come
from Slovakia but I live in Switzerland where I moved in order to further
deepen my knowledge of the French language. Despite the fact that according to
me, one can never master a foreign language on the same level as his mother
tongue, conveying the message in the most efficient way is the key to creating
prosperous relations within a society. In this sense, I believe in the power
words can have as well as the immense importance of communication in today’s
globalized world. As George Steiner said: Every language is a world. Without
translation, we would inhabit parishes bordering on silence.
I have studied all the subjects in English since
secondary school and when it came to choosing my path I could not imagine
continuing my studies in another language. However, there were no English
programs that would catch my attention in Slovakia. Fortunately enough, I come
from a generation that still considers Czech as their second mother tongue.
Thus, I moved to neighboring Czech Republic
to get a degree in International Relations and European Studies. Since my
particular interest in languages has not waned but in fact, only intensified, I decided to continue my studies as a
translator. Nonetheless, I also wanted to gain some work experience within an international environment and thus, pursuing an
online Master degree seemed as the best and the only option for me right now.
During the first year of my studies, I confirmed my
knowledge of English by obtaining CAE certificate. Feeling confident enough, I
set out for the summer in the USA as a participant in Work and Travel Program.
After that, my interest shifted to another language – French. I started taking
classes already during the secondary school and eventually graduated from
French at B1 level. Determined to improve my skills in its natural environment,
I applied for Erasmus stay in Belgium. Despite some initial difficulties, I
managed to integrate into the local student community and upon my return, I applied for DELF certificate. I think
my travel experience helped me, among other things, to acquire a certain degree
of cultural awareness and tolerance. As a result, I enjoy meeting new people
and discussing different points of view based on their cultural and ethnic
diversity. A language is an essential
tool for this exchange.
far as my work experience is concerned, I have so far volunteered in local
bilingual summer camps as a mentor for children and I only started volunteering
as a translator for TED talks in February. I also engaged myself in an online internship for Hieroglifs Translations
Romania in May. However, I am a quick-learner with good organizational skills
and an ability to work under pressure. Moreover, I am very disciplined when it
comes to meeting the deadlines. Yet, when it comes to spontaneity, I like to be
prepared in advance although I tried to work on this weakness of mine by
participating in various extracurricular
activities such as student summits or conferences, particularly Prague Student Summit that promotes research and
education in the field of international relations.
Keywords: slovak, english, czech, french, international relations, politics, journalism, ngo