Miniseries: international students at the Faculty of Medicine, Part 7

The Faculty of Medicine is probably the most international faculty of Masaryk University. 700 international students study throughout all the English programmes. We asked several of our international students why they chose LF MU and how they are coping with being far from their homes and loved ones.

In this episode, we would like to introduce you, Alessandro De Felice.

2 May 2020

Can you tell us something about yourself? Where did you come from? How long have you been studying in Brno?
My name is Alessandro, I come from Italy and this is my first year in Brno.

Why did you decide to study at the Faculty of Medicine of Masaryk University? Did you know anything about the university or the Czech Republic before you arrived?
I decided to study medicine at Masaryk University because studying medicine has always been my biggest dream and I wanted to study it in English. I chose Masaryk University because a friend of mine, who is a second-year student, spoke very highly about this University, so I decided to sit the entrance exam and I passed.

Studying at the Faculty of Medicine is generally quite challenging. How do you perceive the quality of study at the Faculty of Medicine of MU?
The quality of study here is excellent! I admit all of the subjects are very difficult, but with the help of our professors, success is very achievable. The teaching staff are very patient in answering all of our questions and solving our doubts during seminars and lectures.

How do you perceive the current situation? You're far from your family, your friends. Do you have a trick to handle this situation? Does it help you to study? Are you discussing the situation with your classmates?
The period which we are experiencing is very complicated. I am far from home and I do not hide the fact that this situation is bringing me a bit of confusion in organising my study plans. Fortunately, I live with 4 of my classmates, so I have the opportunity to confront them with any problems I have and to let off steam when stress levels reach too high.

What is the situation in your country? Are you in touch with your family?
The situation in my country is very serious. I live in Italy, which is one of the most affected European countries. Every day, I'm in touch with my family to learn how the situation is evolving and also because talking with them encourages me to continue with daily life.

The pandemic shows the importance of healthcare. So far, the Czech approach has proved to be a good way. Do you think this approach is applicable to other countries?
The Czech government did very well to activate the quarantine at the onset of the first cases, and thanks to this, the virus has not spread too much. I think that this approach of closing everything from the beginning to prevent spreading is the solution and it should be applied everywhere.

And finally, a personal question. How do you like it in the Czech Republic? Is there something that surprised you in good or something you still don't understand?
Brno is a very nice city. From the first day I arrived, I felt at home here because it is comfortable and suitable for studying, with plenty of libraries and with few distractions. I highly recommend this city to students.

Thank you for the interview.

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