Estonia is the country with the island where women run everything. When western women showed up proclaiming how glorious it was to have no men around, the local women basically said STFU, the men are out fishing, leave us alone.
On a mote of dust, suspended in a sunbeam.
|Fighting the good fight|
She may have been talking about Russian immigrants being moved into her hometown specifically, especially if ethnic Estonians were forcibly moved to make room for them and/or the new ethnic Russians were given preferential treatment by the local Soviet government over the ethnic Estonians, which would understandably have caused tension.
But in general, ethnic Russians were present in Estonia in large numbers well before the Soviet annexation in 1940, and Russian had been an official language there for hundreds of years.
This is because Estonia had been part of the Russian Empire from 1710 when the Russians first annexed them until 1918 when Estonia broke from Russia and declared their independence (along with Finland, Latvia, and Lithuania) after the collapse of the Russian Empire at the tail end of WW1, with the Estonians then successfully fighting off the weakened now-Bolshevik Russians from 1918-1920 in the Estonian War of Independence (with the help of Tsarist White Russian forces and other military aid from their Baltic neighbors as well as the British Empire).
So by August 1940 when the Soviets re-annexed Estonia during WW2, there had only been one interim generation that hadn't been part of Russia during that 20ish years of independence.
They're right next to each other, both countries deal with the same issues.
They may not be Russian but, the Slavic/E.Europe way of doing business remains. Ham-fisted, violent, rudimentary, crude processes of getting things done...or, extracting it from others. The vice business' are all same around the world
When the Nazi's showed up, many in the Baltic states embraced them as saving them from the Russians. The Nazi party still exists in certain places, and monuments still stand to the Nazi's.
No one is under the illusion that the Nazi's were bad, just less bad than the Russians.
I'd been away for a few years, but a couple of years ago went back to Riga for the first time and was very surprised at the changes that had taken place, just in the last decade.
It used to be that theft out of a hotel room was very common. I knew a crewmember that had his bag stolen while it was by his side, touching his leg. He was distracted for a moment, glanced down, and his bag was gone. In an airport terminal. At the gate. Not at all surprising.
Today, not a bad location and there is money and business flowing in where there was poverty. Many of the cold war era depression is giving way to a modern world, bit by bit.
They ain't your father's Baltic states. Not any more.
|Muzzle flash |
I've been to Estonia (Tallinn) twice on tours in recent years. I can't comment on overall security, but I never was concerned for my safety while there. Estonians are friendly, most speak very good English, and the country appeared to be stable and safe. Lots to see there, and (as another has said) easy access to other countries. I enjoyed my visits there.
Texan by choice, not accident of birth
When I was employed in Chicago a few decades back I had a secretarial assistant who was an Estonian. She was married to fella from one of the Baltic countries as well(he may also have been from Estonia although I want to say Latvian). Anyhow, there was a large Baltic community, often church centered it seemed, in Chicago. There might be some useful resources available to you from thereabouts.
I first thought this was a joke - remember Dilbert's Elbonia cobol programmers ?
Lover of the US Constitution
Wile E. Coyote School of Gunsmithing
|My dog crosses the line|
We visited Tallinn a few years ago. We really enjoyed it. What stuck out for us was how short we were and the Soviet era architecture.
So I’ll ask the question: what is the upside to studying in Estonia? Is the benefit worth the risk?
I worked with a guy once that studied a year in Sweden or somewhere and besides learning their language and making some friends, I didn’t see a big benefit.
Now, the other way around sure. Some kid from Eastern Europe coming here would be a huge benefit I think.
I don’t mean to be a party pooper but you have to consider both sides of the equation.
Its all about exposure. Getting out of your comfort zone, seeing and experiencing new things. At the college age, you're absorbing a giant variety of things and not so entrenched into a specific mindset. Can you as a student, function in an environment in which you're totally alien to the culture and language? Personally, I wished there was a stronger history component to these semester-abroad programs (some do), as seeing and touching specific landmarks and locations puts history into perspective.
At the very least, it's a modified excuse for a vacation. Several friends of mine have had kids that did a semester abroad, both parents were excited as they took the opportunity to do some travel. Kid gets college credit in foreign country, parents visit kid in said country, kid plays tour guide, M&D save a bit of money and some fun. Other major destinations throughout Europe are no more than 3-hours flight time, with plenty of inexpensive transportation options.
What'd you do this weekend? I went skiing in Switzerland.
I hung out on a beach in Spain.
We checked-out some castles in Germany
My roommate showed me around Copenhagen, their med system isn't all that
Not at all.
My daughter is not really a party girl, nor does she need to do it to feather her cap.
She is pretty well traveled for a 21 year old. As stated in the op, she is a double major, Russian and biology.
She has applied for a couple of years for the CLS state department scholarship. But to be seriously considered she needs a year in country where Russian is a language.
Unfortunately WVU no longer has ties to a Russian higher learning institution.
Estonia is the closest university that checks that box.
Fortunately the university of Tartu is also internationally known for their biology program. So if she stays a year she should be able to grab some science that is not offered here.
We are just in the beginning stages of investigation of this venture, but so far the investment seems worth it.
If she does a year of higher Russian there she can test for entrance into a Russian translation opportunity or the Fulbright to teach English.
The ultimate goal is to have serious consideration for the CLS for the State Dept.
Which she can not be considered for until she has a year abroad in a Russian speaking country.
Yes we know that English is used in Estonia, as well as Russian and a couple of other languages.
However this is the best opportunity she can find with an attachment to her school.
Yes! When my kids are older I am going to heavily encourage studying abroad as well. Like it or not, the "globalization" of this world is only going to expand for lack of a better word. Having foreign language proficiency is going to be huge moving forward. Americans have been lucky in the past since English is spoken just about everywhere and most other countries just adapt for us, but that might not always be the case in the future. Plus, proficiency in another language will open many more doors for a young person in a competitive global job market. And finally, I think it's good for a younger person to experience other cultures because they realize the benefits of being born in America.
Every Estonian is fluent in Russian as they learn it from a very young age and since everyone else speaks it, it's easy to gain proficiency. They can switch from Estonian to Russian back to English and never miss a beat. It's really incredible.
ps I am still working on some places to live for your daughter, waiting to hear back from a few people.
|Frangas non Flectes|
I worked with a gal from Estonia. Easily a perfect 10. Absolutely gorgeous.
Dont were too much about a place to live.
Sounds like she will be housed on campus in the international housing section. But it is very much appreciated.
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