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Learning about my heritage while pursuing my American MS Degree in Croatia

by Angela Madjer, a Chicago Gal & an RIT Croatia alumna

Jure Ljubičić began his professional work in the software sales field. When the company he works for asked him to relocate to Europe, they gave him the opportunity to choose which city he would like to call his next home. He decided that Zagreb, Croatia was the perfect place for him.

Being an active member of the Croatian diaspora community in San Jose, California, the decision to choose Zagreb as his next home derived from growing up so close to his Croatian roots. Jure wanted to continue his education and was happy to see that RIT Croatia offered a US graduate program, Master of Science Service Leadership and Innovation. Having a background in technology, this program allows him to enhance his knowledge base in his field of expertise while expanding it in a variety of other fields: “For my capstone project, I am conducting the research to align with my goals for my professional development, so I am excited to see what I find over the course of the program.”  

Jure Ljubičić (on the right), moved to Zagreb from California for business purposes. Aside work and studying, he enjoys traveling and sports, and Croatian concept of coffee

What are some things that you miss about being so far away from home?

Leaving all your friends and family and moving halfway across the world is never easy. It is challenging to start over but also brings new opportunities. A famous burger chain in California called In-N-Out Burger is something I miss from home, although Zagreb does have some good alternatives for burgers. The winters in California are nice and mild, but in Zagreb they can be cold and harsh.  

What are some things that you enjoy to do in Croatia during your free time?

The coffee and cafes in Croatia are difficult to beat. It is always nice to meet up with a group of friends and socialize over a cup of coffee or beer. Watching soccer in Croatia is fun and the atmosphere is electric especially after Croatia’s great performance in the 2018 World Cup. Also, traveling around Europe is wonderful since you can get almost anywhere with a few hours of flying compared to a six-hour flight from San Francisco to New York.

Any advice for other Diaspora fellow people thinking about relocating to Croatia?

My advice is a strong recommendation for people in the diaspora to try it out if possible. It is a great place to learn about your culture and a great place to learn.  

How would you describe the MS program in Service Leadership and Innovation at RIT Croatia as well as the classroom atmosphere?

The program is wonderful and based on the American education system which I feel helps students be better prepared for employment. We are learning about leadership, innovation and what innovative companies such as Airbnb, Uber have done to be successful. It is a large cohort. There are about 20 students in the program and everybody has experiences from different fields/professions. This makes it great because you can learn from what they have seen in their field and they can learn from you. Peer to peer learning is a key benefit to the course in addition to the courses. 

Zagreb (Photo credit: Sandra Tralić)

Would you recommend this program to others? If so – why? 

I highly recommend the program. It Is a great way to get international experience, learn about the cultures and as well as customs of business in Croatia. 

About RIT’s Master of Science Service Leadership and Innovation Program
RIT Croatia offers you the opportunity to earn a Master of Science degree in Service Leadership and Innovation in Zagreb, from a U.S. university, Rochester Institute of Technology. The curriculum and the study plan are aligned with the standards of education at RIT. Classes are in English and combine both online and in-classroom sessions. The program is delivered by professors from RIT’s Saunders College of Business in Rochester, New York, USA. The program is designed for a broad array of professionals who aim to acquire advanced knowledge and skills in leadership.

About RIT Croatia
RIT Croatia (formerly known as ACMT) has been delivering top American degree programs in Croatia since 1997. With its two campuses, in Dubrovnik and Zagreb, this is the only US college in the country and it is the only institution for higher education granting two diplomas to its students – an American diploma, awarded by RIT, and a Croatian diploma, awarded by RIT Croatia. RIT Croatia has prepared over 2,300 young people for their (global) careers. Today, they work all over the world – from the EU countries to Australia and the US, but also exotic locations such as Curacao. International students come from all over the world but most of them come from the U.S. Some come from the main campus from Rochester, but a lot of Americans come from Croatian Diaspora communities in cities such as San Jose, San Pedro, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, New York, Toronto, Mississauga, Cleveland, and many more. For more information, contact [email protected]

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