Natalya Lebedeva

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Faculty of Arts
International Tuition Award
Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?

A graduate degree in the library world is a must nowadays; to have a librarian position, one must have a master’s in information and library science. For me, pursuing a degree was a natural step in order to advance in my career. I really enjoy learning about things I am professionally familiar with, and new things which I might have not yet been exposed to as a professional.

Why did you decide to study at UBC?

I was choosing between several universities in Canada which offer the same degree. UBC became my first choice for its beautiful location, affordable tuition fees and a scholarship that I was offered. Moreover, UBC iSchool is one of the most prestigious in Canada.

What is it specifically, that your program offers, that attracted you?

iSchool at UBC, where I study, is ranked best in the world for its Master’s in Library and Information Studies program. It is also accredited by the American Library Association which means that the degree is recognized in the US, all provinces in Canada and many other countries around the globe.

What was the best surprise about UBC or life in Vancouver?

UBC campus, its location, and natural beauty became one of the biggest surprises. Another pleasant surprise was how many services are offered on campus (sports and recreational, housing, children’s playgrounds, daycares, etc.), and how thoughtful and helpful they are in making student life easier.

What aspect of your graduate program do you enjoy the most or are looking forward to with the greatest curiosity?

Each course brings new interesting discoveries, and I anticipate each new course with the greatest curiosity at that moment.

What do you see as your biggest challenge(s) in your future career?

I see how dedicated, creative and smart my colleagues are; working with them is an honor, competing with them is a challenge.

How do you feel your program is preparing you for those challenges?

Sitting in the classroom with people who are smart and strive to succeed and instructors who are dedicated, intelligent, and very enthusiastic leaves me no choice but to try and keep up with them.

What aspects of your life or career before now have best prepared you for your UBC graduate program?

My previous professional experience in an international school as a school librarian prepared me the most for this program.

What do you like to do for fun or relaxation?

There are plenty of places in Vancouver and surrounding areas to go for a hike or a picnic. We really enjoy lazy days on beaches near the campus, or visiting Steveston in Richmond to eat fish and chips and fly a kite. Sometimes though, I prefer to stay home with a good book for a lazy day with a bath and a long sleep.

What advice do you have for new graduate students?

Learn about life in Vancouver and on campus before you come. There are many perks that you can enjoy if you apply for them in advance. Waitlists are long here :)