German Government Eases Student Struggles With Financial Lifeline Amid Inflation Surge

German Government Eases Student Struggles With Financial Lifeline Amid Inflation Surge

Rohit Thukral, hailing from Mumbai, dives into Chemnitz's tranquility in Saxony for his MSc in Web Engineering. From quirky visa tales to adapting to Germany's unique culture and rigorous education system.

Rohit ThukralUpdated: Saturday, December 23, 2023, 06:45 PM IST
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Hello everyone! I'm Rohit Thukral, originally from Mumbai, and currently soaking in the serenity of Chemnitz, Saxony. My academic journey has been quite a ride. After completing my BSc IT back in Mumbai, I took the leap to pursue an MSc in Web Engineering here in Germany. Transitioning was a blend of excitement and uncertainty. While many struggled with recent complications, my challenges stemmed from the 3-year degree I held, making it tough to find a suitable university.

A quirky memory from my transition was amidst a trekking adventure with friends. The urgency of securing a visa slot while battling fluctuating signals was quite the ordeal. Yet, with sheer luck and determination, thanks to my family's efforts, I managed to get everything sorted on time. 

Why Germany and cultural shock?

Germany has been a land of surprises. The early closures of shops and all by 8 pm and the tranquil Sundays in contrast to Mumbai's bustling streets were unexpected culture shocks. And oh, the German recycling system is an art in itself! I often jest about needing a degree just to master it.

Choosing Germany for my higher studies was a calculated decision. The allure of tuition-free public universities coupled with Germany's demand for IT professionals made it an apt choice. My aspirations to become a scrum master found fertile ground here, with ample opportunities to hone my skills.

I am currently residing in Chemnitz which has been a refreshing change. The town's tranquility is a stark contrast to Mumbai's relentless pace. My university experience here has been welcoming, with orientation weeks dedicated to fostering camaraderie among students.

Germany education system

The German education system, however, was a shift. If I have to be harsh, India’s education system has a lot of hand-holding and emphasises a lot on rote learning. Germany has been a complete 180. Over here, we have to be thorough with our concepts and also there’s very little hand-holding we get. In our research assignments, we have to be extra careful with copyright and citations which I personally didn’t have to bother in India. However, I have seen that Indian teachers do care a bit about student’s future but here they don’t seem to care that much. Not that it is a deal-breaker for me but it’s something that I did notice.

Yet, it's not all work and no play. One of the perks of residing in Europe is the proximity to dream destinations. Exploring neighbouring countries and forging friendships have been the highlights of my journey so far.

Homesick and financial help from govt.

Living in Germany isn't without its challenges. Coexisting with 5 roommates from diverse backgrounds posed its set of challenges, from cultural clashes to basic conflicts. Additionally, the bureaucratic maze of paperwork remains a constant hurdle.

While homesickness occasionally creeps in, the bonds forged abroad act as a balm. Engaging in hobbies and immersing myself in the vibrant student life helps keep nostalgia at bay. Financially, the German government's support has been crucial, offering assistance to tackle inflation and securing a working student job to ensure a comfortable lifestyle. While homesickness occasionally creeps in, the vibrant events and the bonds forged with friends-turned-family help keep those feelings at bay.

In essence, my German sojourn has been a blend of academic pursuits, cultural discoveries, and personal growth. Through challenges and triumphs, I continue to cherish every moment, drawing strength from the community around me.

The author is an MSc Web Engineering student at TU Chemnitz, Germany

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