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My roaring life in France

Almost every student dreams of earning a scholarship to study abroad – especially in a European country. This is because students naturally seek opportunities to gain new knowledge and life experiences, and living overseas is one of the best ways of doing this.

Students who receive a scholarship have some of if not all their school and living expenses paid for.

Most of students want to experience life in a country that they’ve never been to before. A student’s life in Europe is different than in Cambodia - not only is the culture not the same but there are differences in education, infrastructure, personal life and freedom.

Krautch Sochara, center. PHOTO SUPPLIED
Krautch Sochara, center. PHOTO SUPPLIED

After receiving his bachelor’s degree at the Royal University of Law and Economics (RULE), Krautch Sochara, 23, was selected by RULE’s French department to study in France on the Eiffel Scholarship.

Sochara has now been studying for three months in the French city of Lyon, working towards a master’s degree in business law. Even though Sochara has only been there a short time, he has already run into quite a large number of surprises.

He said that he has fallen in love with the French way of life. “I am very interested in how they work, study, eat and hang out. They enjoy life.”

The transportation network available in Paris was also something new for him. Having been born in Phnom Penh, Sochara said that he was used to Cambodia’s modes of getting around: bikes, motos, tuk-tuks and cars. But in France, he said, there are many more options, including trains.

One more important thing you get living in France is freedom - including freedom of expression. The people there have the freedom to speak out whenever they want on any issue they want.

Sochara pointed out, however, that he has to work hard to compete with the other students at his university, and this requires a great deal of commitment and self-study.

“For me, study here is a little difficult,” he said, explaining that he has a lot of work to complete because his professors care mainly about the end product rather than the effort put in. They just want to see his final result, Sochara said.

“If I can finish the work on time, the professor will give me an excellent grade, but if I cannot complete it, a ‘zero’ score is waiting for me.”

Sochara said he plans to return to Cambodia after he graduates, bringing his skills and knowledge back with him to help the country develop its law field.

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