Admissions Director Boriana Shalyavska: 'The choice of university is decisive'
We talked to Admissions Director Boriana Shalyavska on the specifics of applying to AUBG. If you are a prospective student, in this interview, you will find the answers to your questions and some very useful tips on how to prepare for a successful application – directly from the source.
What is the importance of choosing the right university?
Applying for university can be one of the most critical decisions in a young person's life (and for their family, of course!) Not only would it affect the prospects for a future career, but it would also determine the environment one chooses for their development. The choice of university is decisive when it comes to who our friends will be and what countries are they going to come from, what direction are we going to take with our careers, who will be our future business partners, and for many people -- who will be our life partners. The environment at the university and the people we interact with are no less important than the quality of teaching and learning. Let us not forget that we need to look after ourselves and find a place where we will feel good and surrounded by ambitious and determined people. We like to say that AUBG is a place where people get inspired by the ideas of the others, have the opportunity to share and develop their own ideas, and find incentives for competition and development.
What are the specifics of applying to AUBG?
1. It can all be done online - All documents, including the financial support, are attached to the form on the University website. Yes, you can even apply from your phone, provided that you have access to the documents you need.
2. Personal support - During the whole application process, you will be supported by your coordinator whom you can reach by phone, email and social media. The Admissions Coordinators provide information, assistance and advice on the application deadlines, the required documents and how to complete them, the types of scholarships and how to apply for them, and any questions you might have about our dynamic academic and social environment.
3. The application process can happen in stages - you don't need to attach all the documents at once. You can work with your coordinator and follow the steps for submitting the documents on your online account.
4. You do not need to attach a high school diploma at the time of application – we make decisions based on the academic records from the last three years of school. The diploma is required only at the end of August when enrolling at AUBG. You can apply for Early Admission in January or February, and you will receive the admission letter and information on financial support by the end of March. This means that you can choose your university in the spring. That's enough time to enjoy your last days at school and the summer holiday.
How can a student prepare successfully for the application process?
To determine a student's motivation to study at the university, we examine all aspects of the student's application: the school grades, the language test score, the recommendations from teachers and/or project coordinators, the candidate's essay, the CV that outlines the student's interests, extracurricular activities and accomplishments, and the interview results.
The essay - The important thing is that it is personal, written by you and not just creatively copied from the numerous sources of information available on the Internet. There are no penalty points for exceeding the word limit - we need to learn more about the person behind the words and their way of thinking. We have announced two topics, and for me, one of them is more interesting: "You have 650 words. Take the risk!" What do we expect from the student? To surprise us: With a reflection on a topic that interests them, with a story that influenced them, with originality, with creativity. The essay is an essential element of the application process and of great importance to the Admissions Committee. These documents talk about the students themselves, their experiences, expectations, plans, dreams, visions.
The recommendations - from teachers or school project coordinators. It's a good idea to choose people who know you well and can describe your accomplishments in a particular project. The important thing is that they share specific qualities and characteristics that apply to you. I recommend avoiding generic descriptions that would be valid for any good student. All of our students are good students. We accept students with the highest average grades in the whole country and you must be able to stand out with specific achievements.
CV and portfolio that list additional achievements in school and out-of-class activities. I advise you to list the competitions you took part in, your volunteer initiatives, hobbies, talents and skills. This helps the committee choose and nominate students for various types of scholarships that support them in funding their studies. The competition is high, and this is not the time to be humble - boast about your achievements!
What is the profile of a typical AUBG applicant?
If there is something characteristic of all our prospective students, it is that they are not typical.
They are curious, hard-working, creators, athletes, speakers, volunteers, excellent students, mathematicians, writers, physicists, historians, philosophers, ballerinas, basketball players; they practice yoga, write poetry, sing, dance, rescue stray animals, take part in competitions and projects, go to the movies, go to scientific exchange programs, love to take risks and know how to take responsibility. The AUBG applicant is an ambitious, active, forward-looking young person who, at their interview, says, "I want to change the world."