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04/2024 - Aman Mohan

Foto von Aman Mohan
Foto: Aman Mohan

Age: 23  |  Nationality: Indian

Your favorite spots in Potsdam/ Berlin / surroundings?
My favorite locations in and around Berlin/Potsdam include Mauerpark on Sundays, Museum Island with its vibrant street musicians and flea markets, and the fantastic Jazz bar "Yorckschlosschen" in Berlin, known for its great music and atmosphere. I also enjoy the delicious food and pleasant ambiance at the Que Pasa Mexican restaurant. In Potsdam, the scenic walking trail from behind Neues Palais to Drachenhaus or Sanssoucci Palace is particularly beautiful on sunny days. However, my absolute favorite spot is House number 11 on the Neues Palais campus. There, I like to sit near the stairs after sunset, gaze at Neues Palais illuminated in warm lights, and simply stargaze while listening to music.

The most surprising thing about Germany?
I was pretty flabbergasted when I got to know there are more than 300 types of beer and bread here compared to India where you can find just 2 or 3! Also, the education system here is pretty relaxed and stress-free unlike in India where everyone is just in a race to finish their course in 2 years without actually enjoying their time or experimenting with other fields of study which can actually be done here.

Tell us shortly in 3 sentences about your subject. How did you get interested in your
field of study?

I'm currently doing a master’s in Astrophysics which basically deals with the physics behind all the astronomical phenomena, and celestial objects, also determining the origin and fate of the universe. For as long as I can remember I have been always curious and yearning for knowledge about the vast universe. I remember, when I was just six years old, asking my father why we don't launch rockets to the farthest reaches of space to observe how large the cosmos is. I believe that the fact that we humans have a finite amount of time in an infinite and expanding universe motivates me to learn and understand as much as I can.

Where do / would you go with visiting friends or family?
Right now, the spots I mentioned earlier are the usual places for me and my friends here. But back in India with my family, it could range anywhere between just a movie theatre or a visit to nearby hill stations, beaches etc although I really want to take my family on a trip around Europe one day. Spain, Las Vegas, Amsterdam have been few of my dream destinations for a trip with my friends before we settle down.

Is there anything special you miss from back home?
Food! Definitely food is number one. I do miss my friends and family too but at least I can talk to them online, but unfortunately, there is no technology yet that will allow me to taste food online. Other than that I really don’t miss the crowded streets, hot weather, messed up education system, or the heavy traffic jams.

How do you keep a good work-life balance? Any advice for your fellow students?
I don’t know if I am good enough to give advice on this topic as I myself am figuring it out. But I guess you should start by waking up early. And I guess planning the week ahead could save a lot of time. Scheduling my classes in such a way that I don’t burden myself and I get a few days off for work really helps.

Winter is finally over! What did you do to get through the cold season?
I’ll be honest, when I came here for the winter semester it was really hard to adapt. I think it’s not just me, but most will go through a depressive stage when they are here, could be a lot of reasons, and the cold dark days don’t help at all! Hitting the gym daily, working out, eating healthy and taking cold showers are what kept me sane and positive. Occasional meet-ups with friends, sightseeing, playing Billairds and Foosball, fooding, literally anything that will get you out of the house, helps you a lot to get through the winter.

Spring has arrived! What are you looking forward to in this semester?
Cherry blossoms, picnics, swimming, and barbeque grill parties are on top of the list. Berlin and Potsdam are both really beautiful during spring and I just can’t wait for it to get here as it’s been a long winter.

Your future plans:
Regarding my career, I guess the usual trend students follow is academia, doing a Ph.D., etc. But then I don’t think that’s what I want. At least not right now. I am planning to take a semester break to do some internships before I start my thesis. I am also really into cinema, and I really want to be part of a movie someday. I write short film scripts sometimes and I will bring one of those stories to life soon. I really don’t want to rush with my life. I want to take time, experiment with different things, explore new places, learn new skills, meet new people, and figure out what I really want in life.