Tanin Torabi is an MA Contemporary Dance student from Iran, studying in Ireland with the University of Limerick. Here, she explores the sense of international community at UL.
Scrolling up and down my student email box, I cannot even handle opening all the emails of events and opportunity notices that I receive every day from the university.
I wonder, I deeply wish I had attended UL for my Undergraduate degree as well so I had more free time to attend and experience them all! I receive emails from student union, clubs and societies, the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance which I study at, and even from the Cappavilla village – the on campus student accommodation, almost every day. Having a quick look on the titles today, I learn that there is an arts workshop happening in the student center, meal vouchers are to pick-up from student hub, a lunchtime dance concert is held in the academy, the Cappavilla reception has a Nutella/strawberry pancake morning, and all are for free! I wish I didn’t have to work all day on my thesis!
I drink my cup of chamomile tea and wonder how my life has changed in the University of Limerick. I remember how many great opportunities are just ready here for people who are thirsty of learning and experiencing. I wonder how I have been embraced by UL and the students here. I was truly welcomed when I had just arrived in Ireland and had no clue about what is going on. I was totally impressed with the way I was welcomed at the very first week and soon everything was fixed and life seemed quite natural and settled!
Most importantly, I was more impressed with the diversity of nationalities in the university! Look! I study MA in Contemporary Dance and we are 9 of us in the class, from 8 different countries: Canada, US, Ireland, Costa Rica, Iran, Ethiopia and more! Good God, it is a lot! And I live in a 6-bedroom student accommodation and we are from China, France, Pakistan, Ireland and Iran! (Yes! I’m from Iran!) and I know closely many other students that are in our neighborhood or in the close courses from India, Chile, Finland, Serbia, UK, Japan, Australia and…! I cannot explain how much this diversity of people and knowing them and living closely with them has changed my attitude towards life and the world. One can easily see the beautiful sense of unity and oneness here. One can see how similar people are together and how sensible they are. As Baha’u’llah says: “The earth is but one country and mankind its citizens.”
I believe having these international experiences and this level of exchange in the early ages is crucial for students. People who understand this aspect of life and this oneness in addition to their own practice and education, can be better people to run the world and make this world a better place to live! I truly am thankful to University of Limerick for giving me this opportunity to learn about people from different countries, nations, nationalities and genders and feel this deep love and nearness to them.
This should not be taken for granted as something that can happen in every educational system with any policies. UL definitely considers the importance of diversity and giving international students a chance to attend it. It certainly is a wise and valuable policy that I as a student also feel its value now.
I look out through the window and see people playing Hurling in the grass square in the middle of Cappavilla. The good thing about chamomile tea is that it is still drinkable when cold!
Tanin Torabi felt a passion for dance from the very early age of four, but since Iran’s revolution in 1979, dance had been illegal and forbidden in the country, so she could not continue her education in this major; however, she was very keen to follow her love and passion in dance. She is currently studying MA in Contemporary Dance Performance in The University of Limerick, Ireland and hopes to continue her artistic career in Iran.