Argentinian Lithuanian KTU student’s journey – from attending traditional dance festival to relocation

Photo illustrating the news item

“Now that I have finally decided to move and live here, I’m not sure if it is what I expected, but it is something that I enjoy,” says Luisina Allevato, a student from Argentina studying New Media Language at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU). The main challenges for the hardworking student in Lithuania are the language barrier and lack of time.

Luisina is in her first year at KTU, yet this is not her first time visiting Lithuania. Before quarantine, in 2019, she studied the Lithuanian language in Vilnius. Then, she says, it was everything and more than what she expected.

The student from Argentina chose Kaunas University of Technology for its prestige and positive reviews. Although the first few weeks after moving here were confusing and uncertain, Luisina states that “at KTU, there is always someone ready to help you and guide you in every step.”

KTU student from Argentina has Lithuanian roots – her great-grandparents were from here. Therefore, back home she took part in the activities of a Lithuanian community located in Berisso, Buenos Aires. Moreover, after being on the social media and press team for the “Šokių Šventė Argentinoje 2022” (Lithuanian Dance Festival in Argentina), Luisina was encouraged to move back to Lithuania.

She believes that as an immigrant trying to settle down in Lithuania, she needs to put in extra effort.

Therefore, besides being a student in the morning, Luisina works full-time after classes. Although it is extremely hard for her to find time for new activities, she still manages to squeeze in some extra hours to improve her Lithuanian language skills to avoid language barrier inconveniences in the future.

The best aspect of studies is passionate teachers

At KTU, Alevato studies New Media Language. “This is a great study programme, everything you learn, is something that you are in touch with in your personal life, which makes it even more interesting,” states the first-year student at the KTU Faculty of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities.

Since starting work as a secretary, Luisina has been involved in all aspects of communication in companies. That is how she got interested in the concept of the New Media Language. The interesting curriculum of the programme motivated her to sign up for it.

“With new media, it is not only what you say or don’t say, but also how you say it, what you need to say, and how it is perceived. We are all globally connected – we live and die for our words and how we decide to share them,” explains the student.

One of the favourite aspects of the New Media Language for Luisina is her passionate teachers.

“Teaching is one of the most difficult tasks, and it is even more difficult to teach young adults, who believe they know a lot and have poor attention span,” says KTU student from Argentina.

According to Luisina, the passion of some teachers makes the classes super fluent, and it motivates the students to keep studying. Yet she confesses that the opposite is true, too – having classes with less enthusiastic teachers impacts them negatively.

“I truly like how all the things that we are learning are guiding us to be the better versions of ourselves, regardless of the future that we choose. Public speaking, academic writing, and some elements of media are skills that every adult would find necessary in daily life, or at least in work life,” says Luisina.

From Argentina to Lithuania

Coming from a country more than 12 thousand kilometres away, a KTU student from Argentina enjoys many things about Lithuania: “from living safely to being able to save up money.”

However, she admits that living here sometimes feels like moving backwards in time, and the close-mindedness of the locals is hard to appreciate.

“I understand that I might feel culture shock due to the historical background of this country. However, sometimes, when leaving the house and meeting judging eyes, I feel that I have travelled from Argentina in 2023 to Lithuania in the 1970s or something,” says a KTU student, who relocated to the land of her great-grandparents almost a year ago.

However, she is especially fond of the landscape here: “Even in the grey of winter, it is still very magical to see the forests with some snow, or the lakes and rivers.”

This year it was the first winter with snow for her. “I enjoyed it,” says Allevato. Since she also stayed here through the summer, she was happy to enjoy the relaxing warmth, which is more comfortable since it is a bit drier than in Buenos Aires.

Although in the beginning, she had a chance to try out local Lithuanian dishes, Luisina has recently been diagnosed with celiac disease.

“So now, it’s just “cepelinai” for me,” says the girl admitting that she likes to buy them frozen from a local supermarket.

When she has time, Luisina chooses Casa Della Pasta for lunch and relies on her time management skills to complete the plethora of her endeavours.

“My mantra is ‘I will rest when 6 feet under’ or summer… Whichever comes first,” jokes a KTU first-year student Argentinian Lithuanian Luisina Allevato.

Her advice to the readers? “It’s okay to set limits in every environment, study, work, family, friends and even yourself.”

In the article, the photos from Luisina’s Allevato personal album have been used.

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13 Mar 2024