After completing her undergraduate studies at the University of Zagreb, Ivanka Rajh enrolled the University of Paris III – Sorbonne Nouvelle, where she earned a European Master in Conference Interpreting. She holds a doctoral degree from the University of Ljubljana with a dissertation on Croatian and Slovenian marketing terminology. She is an accredited conference interpreter for the EU institutions and many international and Croatian organizations. She has been a lecturer at the ZSEM since 2005.
What inspired you to work for the Zagreb School of Economics and Management (ZSEM) and in the sector of International Education?
I think that study abroad programs are the easiest way for students to learn about different cultures and systems. Such experience will help them quickly adapt to their working environments, which tend to be very diversified in today’s globalized world.
Have your previous travel endeavors helped you in your current role?
Definitely! I have a lot of experience traveling as a student, but also as a business traveler and tourist, so I can help students resolve different issues they might have regarding their study abroad plans.
What is your best piece of travel advice for prospective students?
Be open-minded! Show curiosity, but also respect! Things that seem strange to you may be quite normal and natural for the culture you’re visiting.
Traveling is important because we live in an interconnected world and we all depend on each other. Diverse cultures and systems shape they way we think and work, so traveling helps us understand each other better.
How do you ensure success for your students while they are abroad?
My students know that I will answer their emails right away when they write me about problems they face abroad, so that is very reassuring for them.
What other types of support systems or orientation activities are students provided with?
ZSEM’s International office staff are very competent regarding all sorts of issues students may encounter during their study abroad experience. Beginning in the planning phase, students receive advice on which classes to choose in the receiving institution, where and how to look for accommodation, as well as advice on possibilities of doing their internship in the same destination. ZSEM students who have previous exchange experience with the particular city or institution are also glad to help their colleagues embarking on a study abroad adventure.
Read the full interview here.