In the 2017-18 school year, AISB experienced its largest student increase ever; and the numbers will continue to rise, according to Catalina Gardescu, Manager of Admissions & External Relations, who estimates around 280 new students in August.
We all know that being a new student at any school can be overwhelming. Add on top of that having to adjust to a new city and culture, and it’s likely to cause some serious anxiety.
In order to help incoming students with this transition, we reached out to some of this year’s newbies to find out what their first impressions were of the school and of the city, in order to provide advice. Here’s what they had to say:
Q: What were your first impressions of Romania?
“My first impressions of Romania were that some areas were very clean and modern but other areas were kind of sketchy, but that goes with almost every country.” – Nusrat V., grade 9
“I’ve lived in Germany before and in Ankara, Turkey. It’s a lot like Turkey here but with clear Eastern European behavioral patterns.” – Karl F., grade 8
“The city is good, and everybody is nice to each other.” – Ege M., grade 8
Q: What were your first impressions of our school?
“Very modern and big. Everyone seemed to have friends, and teachers were very welcoming as well.” – Nusrat V., grade 9
“[The school seemed] large and scary, though it seemed a bit unfair that preschoolers got a fancier building than us” – Andi F., grade 12
Q: How difficult do you think the transition was?
“The transition was not as difficult as I thought it was going to be, as students and also teachers were very welcoming. There were other new students as well, so I didn’t feel alone at all.” – Nusrat V., grade 9
“Not too difficult, but it took some adjustment to the rooms and how to get around.” – Karl F., grade 8
Q: What are some things that you didn’t expect about the school?
“I didn’t expect that we were going to be working with laptops or that it would be really hard for me to find friends because people were kind of distant at first.” – Nevena F., grade 6
“Some student-teacher relationships. Teachers seem to genuinely [care] about their students and how they’re doing outside the class, too, and I really love that as that wasn’t the case with most teachers in my old school.” – Elisabeth S., grade 11
Q: What would be some advice you would give to new students/teachers regarding Bucharest?
“That while the access to technology is limited, they should not waste the opportunity to admire the history that can be found here.” – David K., grade 7
“Visit the city, it’s beautiful! [There are] lots of places to go with new friends to create stronger bonds.” – Elisabeth S., grade 11
Q: What would be some advice you would give the new students regarding our school?
“That he/she is going to enjoy [the school] a lot and improve in all aspects. And also, don’t mind about the people that don’t like you; you will find your group!” – Pilar G., grade 6
“It may not be easy to find friends at first, but one should not be upset if they don’t have friends from the Romanian group. You do not have to be friends with everyone. If you find your group or friend, [you] should be happy about that and not sad that you don’t have everyone as a friend.” – Maura I., grade 11
Although the change may be difficult for students moving to different schools, one thing to remember is that you are never alone. There have been people that have experienced everything that you have and there will be students that have the same transition after you.
The best thing to do in a situation like this is to recognize where you’re at and use it to your advantage. Learn about your environment, make friends that you can trust, and enjoy the school!