School of Environmental Sciences

Athletes studying at the School of Environmental Sciences

What has inspired Urban Česnik, a top volleyball player, to study at the first-level study programme Envronment at the School of Environmental Sciences?

We interviewed Urban Česnik, a third-year student of Environment and a member of the first team squad of the renowned Salonit Anhovo Voleyball Team from Kanal, to share his experience of studying at the School of Environmental Sciences and of merging his studies with his sports career.

_Urban, how come you’ve decided to begin with your studies yet during your sports career, considering that you’re a top athlete, which itself requires lots of energy and determination from your part? _
“I’m aware of the fact that education matters, so I’d have gone to university anyway. Getting a degree will definitely help me get a suitable job after I finish my sports career. If I was looking for a job as a grammar school graduate, my employment opportunities would be much scarcer.”

_Why did you choose to study at our university, at the School of Environmental Sciences? _
“I’m very interested in natural sciences and I found the study programme Environment extremely interesting. The areas that the programme covers are contemporary and will be of great importance in the future. Another key factor was the location of the university. As I’m an athlete, I’ve got daily training sessions in the local club and the proximity of the university is a huge advantage for me. The location of this university offers the athletes from the northern Primorska region great opportunities for studying within their local community and the possibility to carry on with their successful sports careers.”

How do you manage to combine your studies with your sports career? How does the university help you in this respect?
“It’s quite demanding, because I take part in trainings five times a week, and we’ve got matches to play at the weekends. So I have to study before and after my training sessions, sometimes even late at night. But I have to say that the school supports me – the university in general is actually athletes-friendly, and the students-athletes can agree with the professors and deans of schools to tailor their studies to their own needs. I like the individual approach of the teaching staff, their availability and willingness to offer extra help. Professors often offer me individual help to explain me the study contents which I have missed due to my absence from lectures. I’m also lucky that my volleyball club supports my decision to study. Both the club’s sports director and my coach are aware of the fact that athletes should obtain education, so they tolerate my absence from training sessions in cases when I have to take part in fieldwork and other compulsory study activities. In general, I can say that I’m happy with my choice of studies, I like my study programme and, as I said, it allows me to carry on with my sports career.”

What are your ambitions concerning your sports and professional careers?
“I wish my club managed to defend last year’s title of Slovenian Cup winners and entered the finals of the national championship or at least take the third place. I’ve signed a two-year contract with my present club, and after my contract expires I’ll see what I’ll do. I might get a chance of playing abroad, or I might remain a member of one of the Slovenian volleyball clubs. I’ll definitely carry on with my sports career for as long as possible. After finishing my career I’d like to work in my professional field. I’m a recipient of a scholarship awarded by my volleyball club, whose main sponsor is the Salonit Anhovo, d. d. company, so I hope I’ll perhaps get a job in this vary company one day. ”

We wish Urban every success with his studies as well as with his professional and sports careers.

Author of the interview: Veronika Piccinini, January 2015

Dear athletes, you are kindly invited to enroll in the study programmes of the University of Nova Gorica. We offer you an individual approach and understanding of your specific needs, which will help you successfully merge your studies and your sports career.

More information about enrollment
Student guide for athletics

Urban Česnik, Foto: Borut Jurca

Urban Česnik, Foto: Borut Jurca

Winning the Slovenian Cup Championship, January 2014 (Urban Česnik – upper row, fourth from left. Photo: Borut Jurca)