I am Nicolas Navas, currently studying my first semester in the follow-up master's in cultural sociology at Masaryk University. My background crossed different academic areas thanks to my willingness to research and learn about the society that surrounded me. I studied a technical program in graphic design followed by a bachelor's program in audiovisual and multimedia communication. During my bachelor's days, I had an approach to ethnography and documentary films that changed my perception of life forever. Analyzing the phenomena surrounding us as humans, the interaction between beings and communication was always a matter of interest for me. I come from Colombia, a multicultural country with biodiversity and ethnic pluralism.

When I decided to start a master's abroad, my principal objective was to challenge myself with a program that would enrich my academic knowledge over the unimaginable for me. During my search for programs, I felt frustrated many times. The idea of gathering documents, writing letters, having enough money, being a foreigner so far from home, and going to another continent was enough to block me a couple of times.

Masaryk University surpassed my expectations. The coordinators and professors helped me through the whole process after being accepted. Their human kindness also was valuable to me during the stressful time before arriving in the Czech Republic.

Persistence was what my parents recommended to me the whole time. It was hard; I am not going to lie. In the beginning, the information available on the internet was quite confusing for me, and the stress during the whole process was sometimes overwhelming. However, I searched and tried different methods of looking for a master's until I found Masaryk University. Something was different about this place; even the website gave me a different vibe. One day I found out that the Masaryk University application process was recently open, impulse me to read the whole website and masters available. I read about every master's offered in the Faculty of Social Studies, knowing that social studies were the branch of academia that I wanted to follow. Nevertheless, I got into a dilemma, should I go for the master's in Cultural Sociology or Conflict and Democracy Studies?

Your master of choice will pave the path of your academic life and this is an important question to answer without hesitation. I chose Cultural Sociology because I knew sociology was the branch of social sciences that I enjoyed the most in my bachelor's. With my background in communication and my experience in directing documentaries with communities, I decided that Cultural Sociology would be the best choice for my further career and me. The program develops deep analytical and interpretative skills in the students, and this was what I was looking for. The professors are highly prepared, their experience is important in the matter of choosing which university and career to study.

If you are thinking of applying to MU, this is the moment to start your application. You will never regret walking through the faculty doors and feeling for the first time the multicultural environment. You will love how enjoyable, academically speaking, the classes are. Each day you learn something new, as life should be, and in the Faculty of Social Studies, you will have plenty of conversations and interactions with students and teachers that will change your way of thinking about life forever.

Cultural sociology is a program for people that is interested in social research and social interpretation. You will read plenty of texts that would help you to improve your analytical skills and will be useful for your master thesis. Be focused, be open, and think about how the master's will shape your academic career.

The master's programs in Cultural Sociology and Sociology are fully in English. Language can be a barrier if you do not practice. As I am from Colombia, my mother tongue is Spanish, and in my first class, I was nervous about my language skills. However, during the first minutes of the lecture, I realized that almost everyone in the classroom was from different parts of the world with other languages as mother tongue different than English. Language is a matter of attention, patience, and persistence. Your teachers would be from different countries than the Czech Republic; this improves the multicultural experience as long as you study and focus. In addition, your colleagues will be from multiple regions. You will learn about different cultures as soon as you arrive at Brno. I can guarantee that this experience will change your life forever.

The best tip I can give to all prospective students is to realize that you will be here to learn and study, work is a second option that never should be over your real intention in Brno. Sometimes the academic charge would be high, as expected at one of the best universities in the world. However, you can manage and organize your time. Every class is carefully structured to have enough time to read and prepare everything.

As soon as you arrive, you will meet plenty of new people. I suggest to everyone to be open-minded and friendly. Brno is a city open to everyone who respects its culture and way of life. I am sure you will learn a lot and the experiences you will collect will be life-changing.



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