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Hanna about IEM

My name is Hanna Butanava, I’m from Belarus and I am currently in my first semester of Industrial Engineering and Management at Fontys. I always knew that I am interested in math, engineering, business and management. When I saw this program, I knew that this was the perfect opportunity for me to study in my field of interest.

I finished 11 grades in the Gymnasium in Minsk. Our Gymnasium is specialized in math and English. After graduation, I entered the Girne American University in Northern Cyprus where I studied Aviation Management for one year. It was very interesting for me, but I thought that it was not enough, that is why I decided to study somewhere else and I chose The Netherlands.

To be honest, it was one of the greatest decisions in my life to study in this country. I like that all systems are so understandable here. If you have a problem at the university, teachers will always help you and explain everything you don’t get.

The first year is a little bit messy for me. When you come to a new place with a new culture, a new language and a new system it is always hard. In the first month, you have a lot to do not only at the university but also in your personal life. You have to take care about visa, a bank account, get a bicycle and so on. But, new people, definitely new subjects – all these things are making you stronger and prepare you for your future life.

"I like that the work load is distributed evenly, which makes studying much easier and more enjoyable."

The system in this university is one that I like most. We have a lot of subjects, but we don’t have exams for all these subjects in one week. It is very useful because your load is distributed evenly, which makes studying much easier and more enjoyable.

We also have projects where we are working in groups and this is hard sometimes. Some people are less interested in the project and don’t work as hard as I do. As for me, the project gives me the perfect opportunity to find out my personal position in the group. Whether I want to be a leader, or it is better to do what the group leader asks me to do. Sometimes it is difficult to understand that every student here has their own cultural background. Not everyone speaks English fluently or has the same knowledge you do.

"It was amazing to see how you can use your knowledge in a professional environment."

We already had some ‘Company Visits’ that showed us real companies. It was amazing to see how you can use your knowledge in a professional environment. We also visited Talent Day at Fontys, an event where in one big space different companies were presented that offer internships. Attending this event helped me realize that what I am going to do is really impressive. You start to understand why you are studying, what your goal is and how to achieve it. Especially for me, it was an amazing motivation to work and to study harder. It can’t be explained, but the feeling when you like what you do is an unbelievable feeling. It is impossible to study something that you don’t like. That’s why I am really happy that I chose Industrial Engineering and Management. It can be hard to understand some subjects, but with real desire everything is possible.