by: Aleksandra Mineeva (Russian participant at the Haniel Spring School)
For me it was the first day of the school and I was truly very anxious about it. Especially regarding the current political situation and European attitude toward Russia because of the Ukrainian crisis. But when I arrived at the Center of Independent Social Research and saw the whole group from the Haniel School led by the well-known and highly respectful Professor Ettrich, whom I personally admire, my worries immediately disappeared. I participated in several international schools before, but this experience was very pleasant right from the first day. Everybody seemed to be very friendly and really interested in Russia, which encouraged me to open the so-called mysterious «Russian soul» and to be very welcoming for the representatives of the whole world from the Brandt School who came to Russia to study it and its people without any prejudice or prejudgment. Everybody got acquainted immediately and felt comfortable because of the great organization! After the meeting we had small self presentations and informal small talk as well.
At the end of the day we continued our meeting in a very cozy cafe near Nevskiy Prospect with good wine and plenty of different appetizers. I think it was a great ending of the day and beginning of the working week. Looking forward for the next lectures, discussions and experiences!