Name: Tsveta Konova
Current Location: Hong Kong
Hometown: Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
GLOW year: 2008
Tell us about yourself – what are you doing, where are you?
Hey! I am a passionate third-year Sociology student of Glasgow University. I’m now on my one-year exchange at Hong Kong University and it is pretty amazing! I definitely recommend studying abroad at some point of one’s education.
What do you love about your job (studies)?
I love that I love it. I love that Sociology always challenges my beliefs presents me with viewpoints I would’ve never thought of. I love that wherever I go, there is something that fascinates me and I analyze it from a Sociological pint of view.
Walk us through your (work) day.
Wake up, usually a bit too late. It’s never too late for breakfast, though (credits to my grandparents) 😀 When breakfast takes too long, I sometimes miss the shuttle bus and need to climb the steepest hills in the Hong Kong heat. Lectures are simply amazing. I find peace during lunch at the Buddhist canteen, engaging in a conversation with some of the most interesting people on campus. Then, more lectures, some studying, some GLOW preparations, some skype with family, and (usually) sleep. I love to travel on weekends, but at the end of semester is simply impossible.
What “rules” do you live by?
Hm, that is tough questions. I suppose I need more “rules”. I believe one thing I do is cherish what I have and remind myself it’s been through persistence and work that I’ve achieved it. Therefore, I need to do my best at present to get closer to the ‘future me’. Deep… 😀
What is the greatest thing about education?
The fascination it provides you with. This is a driving force in its own.
Who has inspired you in your life and why?
Many people and that is the best thing about it. I have had the amazing privilege of meeting numerous inspirational people, and the brains to be astonished by them. I do need to work on sustaining these relationships and foreseeing the future opportunities seeded in them. So far I have drawn my inspiration from my family members (young and old), people at GLOW (staff and guest-speakers), teachers, professors, and friends, of course.
What are you passionate about?
I believe this becomes apparent from the other questions.
Which experiences in life helped you become the person you are?
The upbringing by my extraordinary family – the more I mature, the further I realize its enormous role. And ever since 8th grade, everything I have done, the ways I have triggered my development, could more or less be related to GLOW. I believe this is a commonality Sustainability Team members have Lastly, the times I have decided to challenge myself, to do something different from what I think I am expected to. Like all those spiritual days I’m just wandering around in unfamiliar cities, taking photos, writing about the experience, meeting amazing people.
When things get tough, how do you keep yourself going?
One think that usually works is the idea that it has been worse and I have managed. When things get to a new level of toughness, though, the only way forwards is to become tougher yourself. Honestly, I acknowledge I’ve trigger many of the toughest situations myself – I have a lot to learn. I need to do more post-crisis analysis 😀
The things for which we should always find time are…? Why are they important?
Yourself, whatever it means to you.
Closest people, because you both need it and want it.
Hobbies, because they are an internal part of you and when all else fails, they are your reviving escape. I am so thankful my dad taught me this. I suppose sports fall in this category. For me, volleyball, swimming and jogging are interchangeable but vital.
Food – come on, it’s essential! 😀
And I always seem to find time for GLOW. And it always seems to be worth it.
What kind of books (or which) do you consider must read?
I enjoy reading books a lot (!), but I’m a very slow reader, so you don’t see me holding a book too often. And when you do, it’s probably the one from 2 months ago 😀 BUT when I read, I get really into it and it’s usually an amazing book. The books that have impressed me the most recently are Khaled Hosseini’s ‘The Kite Runner’ and ‘A thousand Splendid Suns’. Both are simply brilliant.
What has GLOW given you?
I have thought and talked about this so much that is hard squeeze it in a few words. To put it simple, it is an integral part of who I am, what I have done, and how I see my future. Very, very few other factors have influenced me on this level.
Tell us something interesting that very few people know about you!
I think I might be allergic to tofu. And that’s very bad thing in Asia! 😀
What is your advice for the young people?
We should always take full advantage of the opportunities out there. And when it seems that there are no opportunities, we should stop, imagine, and create an opportunity ourselves; the one that no one has thought of or has been brave enough to embrace to the fullest. The rest, we know.
Share with us your favourite most inspirational piece – article/ story/ talk/ video!
I am sharing this particular link, because Natalie Tran is my favourite youtuber and she has taught me a lot in about being funny and not taking yourself too seriously. And I think that this is important.