Last week the first online meeting for incoming scholars took place. On Thursday, the 2nd of April, about 50 scholars met online with some OeAD staff members for a warm and extremely positive exchange.
After a short Welcome by the OeAD team and a brief information about the current measures of the Austrian government the scholarship holders were invited to tell their own story. Some of the participants had returned to their home countries before the travel stop, while others were calling from their small student apartments in Austria. Wherever they were staying at the moment, they were all united in their wish to talk to each other and feel connected.
The scholarship holders spoke about the situations in their home countries and their worries about their families back home. Lisa Esti Puji Hartanti from Indonesia told us about her initiative to make an online campaign for her country about Covid-19 and to even offer her help to the responsible Indonesian authorities.
Ernst-Mach scholarship holder Laura Lukášová, who is part of the Covid-Czechia emergency team, described her work (read more) and offered her support to learn German. Many more reflected on the current situation and their experiences revealing their fears and hopes. The participants raised awareness for looking after one own’s mental and physical health. They exchanged ideas of how to stick to daily routines, to keep track of time management while working at home and to try new hobbies and cooking recipes. Every speaker tried to help others to make the best out of this situation and encouraged them to see the positive aspects of this crisis.
Due to the positive feedback to this online event, there will be more sessions during the next weeks. Please check the OeAD website for new announcements.