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It’s amazing how time flies!

This is the fifth blog from Nutsa Kvitashvili who is following the BA Program of Sociology at Caucasus School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Nutsa is the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation Scholarship sponsored by Inizio.

I finished the first semester of my senior year at Caucasus University and this semester was probably my favorite of all because I had subjects which were very interesting and exciting for me, that’s why I wrote my final exams pretty well.  By the way this year is Caucasus University’s 20 year anniversary, so this year we will have a lot of fun activities and events and I’m looking forward to it.

It’s amazing how time flies when you are doing things that you like. Four years ago I became a student at Caucasus University, it seems like it was just a few weeks ago but now I’m in my last semester. Those four years at CU (Caucasus University) were educational and also fun. I met new people and most of them are my friends now, I got to do a lot of fun activities, visit university events and parties and just enjoying student life to the fullest. Besides all the fun being in your last semester is tough because you have more responsibilities and a lot of decisions to make. For example, where should I work? Or should I get my master degree first? Where is it better to get a master degree? In Georgia or maybe in Europe? Which university? Which major should I choose? And there are many questions like this which every senior year student should ask their selves and make these life-changing decisions which could be hard for them. Students start to realize that their academic journey which began when they first started school is now ending. Starting a new chapter in your life can be terrifying because we don’t always know what should we expect from the future. But at the same time with changes come a lot of great opportunities for young adults. The end of something is not necessarily a bad thing, it means that something new is starting and who knows maybe this new journey would be more interesting. American author Caroline Myss once said, “always go with a choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that is going to help you grow.”

   

About My Life

This is the fifth blog-post from Paola Loy Villagran, the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation scholarship in Guatemala. 

During these days I am taking final exams in the first trimester, waiting for the best results to enjoy the summer holidays.

We followed a course called Operations Research, a discipline that deals with the application of advanced analytical methods to help make better decisions, so we can improve time, costs and customer service processes. We can use these applications in airlines, manufacturing companies, service organizations and many others. Hopefully I will be able to implement some of these methods in my own business in the future.

Easter Week in Guatemala

Among other things, as I mentioned in my last blog, Guatemala has a mix of Mayan and Christian traditions that allow us to unite in faith and family. And since we are so close to the celebration I would like to tell you a little about them.

One of the most important, that reminds me my childhood is making carpets.

There are two types of carpets that are made during Easter Week in Guatemala: The carpets along the processional route, made by residents who invite friends and family to assist them, and the carpets in the churches that are made for the holy vigils by the brotherhoods.

Carpets of “Semana Santa” in Guatemala, the greatest expression of art.

On Good Friday the streets of Guatemala are covered with natural, aromatic carpets of flowers, pines, clover and fruits, which the residents put together and place in front of their homes. There are all kinds and shapes, some of them are very long, even up to a kilometer, with colonial and original designs and usually they are made during the 24 hours prior to the procession.

Families making carpets

And because of the intense detail and amount of time dedicated to their creation, they are meant to be destroyed once the processions pass. This is a way for the people to give something of themselves in memory of Christ’s death.

Also, during this month my family and I attend a special event organized by Avon Foundation for Women, with the purpose to educate and mobilize people worldwide on issues that are of vital importance to women like breast cancer education and ending violence against women.

My Family and I during the Avon Race

“Violence against women and girls hides in the shadow of silence” they said during the event, so I think we all must support these activities and help others to develop and implement policies that promote gender equality.

Nicolin reflects on her new life post studies

Nicolin Mamuya, who was granted the first ESOMAR Foundation scholarship in South Africa, has now finished her studies at the University of Johannesburg and is now working as a graduate trainee in the consumer insights and innovation department of a retail company. The company has also arranged for all trainees to complete a post-graduate diploma in business management. So she is basically working while going to school.

We are already 3 months into the year and so much has happened. I finally moved out of the place that I last lived in with my mother. It was such a big step, however; it was what I needed to remind myself that I am actually growing. After all, with growth comes change. I have gained confidence due to how far I have come and my future goals are only becoming clearer as time goes. I only have God to thank for all the opportunities I have been blessed with.

I have also started frequently watching inspirational videos seeing as there really is no formula for this life. One of the interesting videos by Jim Rohn in 1981, provided great food for thought. He mentioned that unless you change how you are, you will always remain with what you have. He continues to state that success is something you attract, not what you pursue. Self-development is, therefore, important. You can start by changing your attitude and then after, understand all you can do through “childish curiosity”. Childish curiosity means that you should not be skeptical but rather be as curious as a child. Jim Rohn highlights the importance of having childish faith i.e., believing easily. This concentrates on easily believing in your abilities.

There is so much that he looked into, however, the one thing that seems to summarise all he said is that everything depends on you. We should, therefore, not blame but rather learn to take responsibility.

 

Cambodian Scholarship Awarded by ESOMAR Foundation, Women In Research and Unilever

Scholarship goal reached for Esther Tot in Cambodia to pursue the English-based Bachelor Degree program in International Business at National University of Management, Cambodia

 

 

 

 

15 January 2018 – Amsterdam, NL – Esther Tot of Cambodia was the latest recipient of a scholarship funded through a partnership of the ESOMAR Foundation, a charitable organization representing the market research industry, global non-profit Women in Research (WIRe) and Unilever. Tot will be pursuing an English-based Bachelor Degree program in International Business at the National University of Management (NUM), Cambodia.

“We are so pleased to see the market research community continue to see the value in funding scholarships in economically challenged regions, the latest being in Cambodia. This scholarship will provide Esther the opportunity to pursue her studies in order to enter a rewarding career in market research.” says John Kearon, President, ESOMAR Foundation, “Our partnership with WIRe and Unilever is incredibly valuable in investing in future talent like Esther.”

The recipient, Esther Tot, is a Cambodian native from a disadvantaged socio-economic background. Through the scholarship, Esther will have the opportunity to pursue her degree and a future career in market research. Through funding the education of women like Esther, the organizations involved help to advance the voice of minority women in the market research industry.

Women in Research (WIRe) raised the funding for the scholarship through outreach to their global community, and funds raised were supported by a matching donation from Unilever. WIRe is the only non-profit organization solely dedicated to the advancement of women in the market research industry, providing career development and educational opportunities for women while supporting gender diversity initiatives. Unilever, a global consumer goods company with a strong focus on charitable initiatives—especially in emerging markets—matched the WIRe community’s contribution dollar for dollar to the scholarship fund.

“The ESOMAR Foundation scholarship initiative aligns perfectly with our goal of advancing the contributions and voice of women in research.” says Kristin Luck, founder of Women in Research. “Ongoing support from our community for these types of scholarship programs reinforces that arming women with the tools they need for success is of great importance to our global community. We are so pleased to be able to help Esther achieve her educational goals.”

Based on the success of this Scholarship program, ESOMAR Foundation and WIRe plan to continue to collaborate in 2018 to fund additional scholarship initiatives in emerging or disadvantaged markets.

About ESOMAR Foundation
ESOMAR Foundation is a charitable Foundation representing the Market, Social and Opinion Research industry. Our industry has a wealth of knowledge and experience that can be applied to every aspect of society to ensure a more transparent, reliable and sustainable world. The ESOMAR Foundation is the charity arm of ESOMAR, the global industry association of market, social and opinion research. http://www.esomarfoundation.org

About Women in Research 
Women in Research (WIRe) is the only non-profit organization solely dedicated to the advancement of women in the market research industry, supporting educational programming and networking events across five continents. WIRe programming also facilitates leadership, entrepreneurship, mentoring and other career development goals. WIRe’s mission is to advance the contributions and voice of women in research, both for themselves and the greater good of the market research industry. www.womeninresearch.org

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Media Contact: Jessica Sage, jessica@womeninresearch.org

Make every moment worth remembering

This is the fourth blog-post from Paola Loy Villagran, the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation scholarship in Guatemala. 

I am glad to confirm that I completed the first year of studies. Thank God, grades were good but I must admit that it was quite a challenge. I followed a statistics class with a pretty demanding teacher, so I was very busy between exams, group work, homeworks, tutorials and many others.

Honestly, everything was for a good reason because I learned a lot about statistics theories, probabilities techniques using mathematics and above all how to make decisions based on data. It was a year of much learning and profersional growth. I am very excited about the new courses and challenges that are coming.

In my personal life, I admit that Christmas is my favorite time of the year, I love to spend time with my family and friends. In Guatemala, it is celebrated in a specific way because we have many religious and old traditions that people respect, like:

 “Quema del diablo,” or “the burning of the devil,” that occurs every December 7th. Piñatas designed to be the devil are burned as a symbol of releasing any negative energy or letting go of any bad things from the past year.

“Posada” a procession that symbolizes the journey that Mary and Joseph made from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Each night, a wooden float with the statues of Mary and Joseph is carried to three different houses. At the first two houses, a part of the group in the procession enters the house and performs a dialogue; those carrying the float are denied entrance, symbolizing those who turned away Mary and Joseph. At the third house, Mary and Joseph are allowed to enter and are placed in a designated area, generally by the Nativity scene.

 “Nacimiento” the Nativity Scene is the central piece of Christmas decorations in Guatemala. If the Nativity Scene dolls are big enough, the baby Jesus is formally dressed in a white gown on New Year’s Day.

During this time, I also had the opportunity to help a friend I met years ago, but the interesting thing about this story is that he and other friends formed a nonprofit organization called “Heroes of Happiness” with the objective of helping families living in situations of poverty in the country. Especially in this time of sharing and helping people in need we organized activities for children from various communities so they could share with Santa and receive a gift.

Children waiting for Santa!
Families receiving bags of food.

In addition to that, we also prepared bags with food so that people can have a better nutrition during these months. Our next project is to build houses so that people in need can live in a better place and prevent fires and diseases caused by drastic temperature changes.

Houses destroyed by fire in a poor community.

Happy New Year to all, I wish all your dreams come true. Make this new year full of joy, peace and purpose.

 

How you can support Paola

If you wish to support Paola and be the donor of this scholarship, we would be happy to connect and provide you more information. Please contact: info@esomarfoundation.org

How you can support in your country

If you are a market researcher, a national market research association, an NGO involved in research or a university interested in a scholarship in your country please contact us at info@esomarfoundation.org

Partners & Sponsors

We are always on the lookout for partners and sponsors. If you are an organisation looking to understand more on how you can support us, please find more information here or contact:  info@esomarfoundation.org 

 

 

How to make a difference and bring out the holiday spirit!

This is the fourth blog from Nutsa Kvitashvili who is following the BA Program of Sociology at Caucasus School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Nutsa is the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation Scholarship sponsored by Inizio.

I’m halfway through the first semester of my 4th year at Caucasus University and everything is going pretty well. I wrote my last midterm few days ago so it was a busy month for me. In this semester I study very interesting subjects such as sociology of education, sociology of religion and so on but sociology of arts and visual sociology are my favorite subjects. I have great lecturers in every subject. It’s my senior year in university, so during classes we are more focused on discussions and seminars rather than quizzes. The homeworks are so interesting that I’m reading them like an adventure book.

Every year my university (Caucasus University) has a lot of fun activities during the holiday season to cheer up students. In the hallway we have charity boxes so students can put warm clothes, toys, Christmas trees and food in them, and all those things will be donated to children’s orphanage and to the families with social vulnerabilities. This kind of activities really make a difference and brings out the holiday spirit.

Also, we have activities like Secret Santa which is a Christmas game. If you want to be a part of this game you have to register on the site and each registered student will receive a name but doesn’t tell which name they got and after registration they are responsible for the gift for the person they received. All the gifts are placed in a general area for opening at a designated time and each recipient then finds out who their Secret Santa is. Students, university managers and workers are participating in this game so this time of the year in our university is filled with a holiday atmosphere.

I finished my midterm exams so now I’m looking forward to holiday vacations. This year I will spend new year with my family and my friends at the holiday dinner. Christmas is a time for making new memories, cherish friends, family and it’s the season of loving and sharing the spirit of the holiday season. I want to wish a merry Christmas and a happy new year to you, may this new year bring you peace, love, joy and happiness for you and your loved ones.

How you can support

If you are a market researcher, a national market research association, an NGO involved in research or a university interested in a scholarship in your country please contact us at info@esomarfoundation.org

Partners & Sponsors

We are always on the lookout for partners and sponsors. If you are an organisation looking to understand more on how you can support us, please find more information here or contact:  info@esomarfoundation.org

    

 

 

Nicolin hopes to find employment!

The end of the year is fast-approaching and I am not looking forward to searching for new hobbies to keep me occupied. I doubt I will be visiting my family this Christmas due to the fact that I have not found employment as yet. However, I have to remain positive for the sake of sanity.

The exam season ended on the 24th of November, just the day before the 25th being my birthday! A great way to end the exams. I also presented to Colgate-Palmolive on the 27th of November with Patience, Ridwanaah and Farzaana (the girls who attended the SAMRA conference with me).

The presentation was based on an assignment we wrote on ways to improve the sales of the Colgate toothpaste in informal stores around South Africa. Hopefully the company will consider recruiting us after listening to our creative ideas. We can only pray!

The scholarship awarded to Nicolin was sponsored by SSI and in collaboration with SAMRA.

Marketing research; Baptism by fire

This is the first blog from Innocent Rwamba Nyaga who is following the MS in market research at the University of Nairobi, Kenya. Innocent is the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation / MSRA Scholarship sponsored by WIRe and Unilever

The phrase ‘baptism by fire’ was first coined by John the Baptist in the Bible in The New Testament and was mainly mentioned in regard to peoples’ ability to be cleansed and consecrated spiritually. Its application now originates from Europe describing an employee that is learning something the hard way, like being immersed in their field of employment. Baptism by fire also has its roots in battle terminology, describing a soldier’s first time in battle.

This is true for my interaction with the subject of Market Research as an actual field of work or study and this was initiated (literally) by a guest lecture in the university by Phyllis Macfarlane. I hadn’t attended a class by then so she was my opening to the subject and what it entails in the real world. I left that two day seminar a believer. Like most people in Kenya, Market Research is not known very well as it has not been an avenue to get employment. You see, when we go to university, we choose fields that will enable students get a job at the end of it all because that is the societal pressure we face. The idea of using one’s talent as a way of making a living is a concept that has just penetrated the country and more so Africa as a whole. This is because we have been brought up to uphold tradition and to always obey our elders (in this case parents/guardians) as they know what’s best of us.

It’s a very interesting subject for me as I am very passionate about people in general, what makes them tick and being able to put myself on their lever to better understand them. This degree will further this ability and together with training, I’ll be well integrated in the industry. Honestly, I find myself looking forward to being done with this part of schooling and getting my hands dirty, so to speak.

I have had a couple of months’ worth of classes now and truthfully my best class so far is on Marketing Ethics and Governance taught by one Dr. Joseph Owino, every Monday evening, worth every penny this lecture. What’s interesting is his ability to let his students think critically by providing real life situations/scenarios by way of case studies and asking pertinent questions that make us think because the aspect of ethics is not always a given for all. One may choose to be ethical or not in every aspect of life. The other subjects are interesting too thing is I need to invest more time in doing more out of class research so as to reach a suitable level of understanding.

Dr. Joseph Owino

This Scholarship really is special because women in general and especially in Africa face a lot of challenges specifically when it comes to advancing themselves so as to reach that level of self-actualisation that Maslow’s theory/hierarchy of needs talks about. Besides these challenges women are strong willed, future oriented and can survive any environment. To ESOMAR Foundation, WIRe, MSRA and Unilever, I’m forever indebted to you. I will endeavour to be a good example to those who come behind me and I shall take full advantage of this opportunity.

How you can support

If you are a market researcher, a national market research association, an NGO involved in research or a university interested in a scholarship in your country please contact us at info@esomarfoundation.org

Partners & Sponsors

We are always on the lookout for partners and sponsors. If you are an organisation looking to understand more on how you can support us, please find more information here or contact:  info@esomarfoundation.org

   

Believe in yourself, be confident and don’t be afraid to take chances

This is the third blog from Nutsa Kvitashvili who is following the BA Program of Sociology at Caucasus School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Nutsa is the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation Scholarship sponsored by Inizio.

 

 

It’s been a while since my last blog so I’m going to tell you a little bit about my summer vacation and my studies. I’ve enjoyed my summer vacation a lot. I was in Batumi it’s the second largest city of Georgia and it is located on the coast of the Black Sea in the counrty’s southwest. Batumi is a place which I really enjoy visiting with my friends because of its beautiful walking areas, long boulevards and old 19th century buildings which gives you the feeling that you are in Europe. It was a blast.

Summer has ended and I’m about to start my 4th and last year at Caucasus University. Thinking about my last year of studies makes me sad and excited at the same time. Sad because studying at university is one of the most interesting, thrilling and inspiring experience in life. After spending four years studying, adapting to life after university can be pretty difficult. But at the same time I’m beyond excited because after graduating from university you will start a new journey, a new chapter in life. This is the time in your life when you can reach new heights, the time when everyone has a lot of opportunities but a lot of people miss that chance because they’re afraid to go after them. The important thing is to believe in yourself, be confident and don’t be afraid to take chances.

This year my studies are starting a little bit late because Caucasus University is moving into a new building and all the students are excited about this change because the architecture of the building is very beautiful and has a historical atmosphere.

 

In this semester I’m going to study a bunch of interesting subjects such as sociology of arts, sociology of religion, visual sociology, sociology of education, etc. I’m very excited about the new semester, new building and new subjects which I’m sure are going to be intriguing and fascinating.

How you can support

If you are a market researcher, a national market research association, an NGO involved in research or a university interested in a scholarship in your country please contact us at info@esomarfoundation.org

Partners & Sponsors

We are always on the lookout for partners and sponsors. If you are an organisation looking to understand more on how you can support us, please find more information here or contact:  info@esomarfoundation.org

    

From baby prawn to adult prawn

This is the fifth blog-post from Esther Tot who received the ESOMAR Foundation Scholarship to study at the English based Bachelor Degree program in International Business at the National University of Management (NUM) in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

It’s kind of weird but wait until I’ll explain why there’s a baby prawn and an adult prawn! Yes, this is how I see myself! In Year1 I was a baby prawn, which just entered the university. Our lecturers like to call us Year1 students “Baby Prawn” because we are the youngest ones in school and we, baby prawns, are trying to adapt and learn from the adult prawns (Year 2, 3, 4 students). We have to learn and observe from them because when we enter the university it’s as if we are born into a new world or new place.

BUT_ BIG BUT (got this way of saying from my marketing lecturer which everyone love to use), so BIG BUT is that in November I will enter Year2 and I am so excited because I have passed all the exams of Year1. To be honest if people ask me whether it was easy, I would say not too easy and not too hard but it required so much self-discipline as I had talked about in my previous blog about Self-Discipline. What I mean by self-discipline is that we need to commit to having less sleep and more study time because there are loads of assignments that need to be completed and submitted. We have to be committed to school and assignments.

So now I am becoming an adult prawn as I am entering Year2! I don’t know what’s coming next but I guess it might be more fun than Year1 because there will be more and more assignments. But I am ready for it!!!

I can’t wait to finish my university and get a degree so I can have a good job with a high salary, which makes my life worth. It’s not easy but I believe one day I can become a Prawn Boss. There’s still a long way to go…. 2 more years till I reach Year4!

So my message to all the baby prawns is that it’s ok to have a lot of assignments and presentations because it will pay off when you will become an adult prawn. You will gain a lot of experience from your baby prawn year so work hard and if you fail don’t lose hope and please keep trying harder and harder each time you fail even though sometimes it seems that you have reached your limit. But don’t limit your education just keep letting it grow.

I would like to say thank you again to the ESOMAR Foundation for providing me with the special opportunity of having a better education and as well as achieving my dream as a poor kid to become a knowledgeable person.

Partners & Sponsors

We are always on the lookout for partners and sponsors. If you are an organisation looking to understand more on how you can support us, please find more information here or contact:  info@esomarfoundation.org