Studying Abroad at Siam University: meet Gamze
Our former intern Valentin met up with our former Bangkok student Gamze Öztürk. How is it to be a student in one of the most thrilling cities in the world? And does Siam university meet up with the expectations? Let´s find out!
Hey Gamze, can you please introduce yourself and tell our audience where you come from and what your study background is.
Hello, I am Gamze Öztürk, I am 24 years old. I grew up in Berlin and I’m currently doing my master’s degree here in Bangkok. Previously I studied two semesters (one year) abroad in Istanbul, in the home country of my parents. The reason for that was to better understand my cultural background, Turkish, and get to know my cultural roots. Moreover, I study international business administration (master) at my home university in Berlin.
Can you give us a brief overview of your studies at Siam University?
I really like Siam University and I would recommend it to everyone. The atmosphere here is just great. The lecturers speak great English and know a lot about their subject. They might not have the best approaches (in my opinion), but they always try to help you where they can. Most of them have international experience and know how to treat students from different countries. They are very open and happy to help you whenever help is needed. Again, I am super happy here.
I only have classes on weekends, and that’s great because I can travel from Sunday night until Friday. I nearly got to visit all famous places of Thailand. I have been to neighboring countries, which was only possible because I could choose my courses the way I wanted to.
What did you like about your studies and what did you not like so much?
What I don’t like – well, like most students – is writing papers and group tasks, but actually that helped me a lot during my studies and I have learned new things out of it. Furthermore, being involved in the class activities helped me to improve my marks. What I also didn’t like so much was homework and the obligatory attendance (75%), but I guess no one likes that.
What I really like is the university overall, I like the lecturers – they are really nice and helpful. The furniture of the building reminded me of the 70’s show. Personally, I do not like the furnishing but it also has some flair. Something I would really like to mention is the janitor at our campus. He is the king there, a super funny guy and he makes everyone’s day.
In 2 words, how would you describe Bangkok?
Agile — there are so many people, you will never get bored!
Diverse — Bangkok is a city of diversity. You get to see so many people from so many different countries, it’s just amazing.
Was it hard to get used to Bangkok?
No, not for me. It is so similar to Istanbul, the city where I studied during my Bachelor’s degree. For me, all Asians have similar cultural characteristics: they like to bargain, they like spicy food and they like to listen to loud music. So, it’s literally “same same but different”.
As a “real” European, who is not used to Asian cultures, you might get a culture shock at first, because of the different food, the mass of people and the hectic traffic.
Do you like the Thai cuisine?
For me, everything tastes the same. I don’t really eat pork and beef doesn’t taste very good here so the only alternative for me is to eat chicken. Therefore, it’s always the same — rice with chicken, pad thai with chicken or seafood and so on. Compared to the Turkish cuisine, Thai food is a bit “monotonous” because the Turkish cuisine is very versatile. This is what I don’t like so much about the Thai cuisine.
What I really love is roti, which is similar to pancakes, that’s the best thing here and I can’t get enough!
What is your favorite Thai food?
My favorite food is pad thai, a noodle dish with all kinds of toppings. Also, it’s super cheap and only costs around 50 THB (1,30 EUR).
You might also be interested in: A Love Letter To Bangkok
Is there anything you would like to say about Asia Exchange?
I am happy that I chose Asia Exchange, even though I had to pay for it. I had a lot of advantages because of that.
First, Asia Exchange is always reachable and everyone is taking care of you.
Second, at the university we experienced some other advantages. As an Asia Exchange student you are treated very nicely by all the university staff, because they want you to be happy here. They know how hard it is to come from another country and especially as an Asia Exchange student you get a special “status”.
Third, Asia Exchange is very active during your semester. They always send people here to help us, ask us how we are. Asia Exchange doesn’t leave you alone here and it’s not like “we have your money, now do what you want”. They always post information on Facebook which helps us a lot. Moreover, when problems arise we can always contact them, and they help you within hours.
I would recommend Asia Exchange to everyone.
Asia Exchange is a Finnish company providing study abroad opportunities in Asia Pacific for students from all around the world. Want to get travel tips and new blog posts straight to your inbox? Subscribe to our monthly newsletter! If you have any questions about studying abroad, feel free to contact us! We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
This article was conducted by our former intern Valentin!