One of the best parts about being a university student is the people you meet. It can be difficult at times when we’re caught up in exams and deadlines but for those moments when we do let ourselves out to go explore, we tend to find out that the strangers next to us are more amazing and interesting than we could have ever thought. Some love to draw, some love to dance, and today’s special guest loves to bake. Hopefully, by getting to know her, you’ll also get to know a little bit more about yourselves.
Meet Paidamoyo Rusere.
A medicine student, from Zimbabwe, who studies at the University of Pécs and loves to make baked treats in her free time.
In the time you have spent here, what has been your favorite thing about Pécs?
My favourite thing about Pecs has definitely been the peacefulness of the city. It is not crowded and I love the Mecsek area and how accessible most places are on foot.
What’s been the worst thing about Pécs?
That would probably be the transportation. I think the transport system could be greatly improved.
What has been the best and worst part of your journey to becoming a doctor?
The best part is the people and the opportunities I have had. The chance to grow as an individual and learn about my strengths and weaknesses have really been eye opening. The worst part is the stressful moments I’ve experienced on the journey and not feeling good enough or qualified to study medicine.
What advice would you give to those coming after you?
I would say always put God first in everything you do. Always ask questions, never assume anything. It is also very important to ask seniors for advice and tips. Have a good friend or two who will study with you and support you, you need people around you in med school.
We know sometimes student life takes a toll on our mental health, how do you take care of yours?
I take care of my mental health by making sure I take time for myself. My faith is an important part of my life and being a Christian I take time to read, pray and spend time with God. I also like to take walks which help me clear my mind and come back energised.
What do you do after, when you‘re not learning to save our lives?
When I’m not studying, I will definitely be at home. I am a homebody and love my space. As long as everything I need is in the house you will not find me outside. I also like to travel, so when I have enough time on my hands I travel. I have also started getting into listening to podcasts instead of scrolling on TikTok.
Can you tell us about Baked Treats?
Baked Treats is a small cakes and cupcakes business that I started with a friend. We specialise in decadent homemade cakes which will keep you wanting more and more. I was inspired to start this business mainly because I missed the taste of cake from home. I noticed that there was a need for this and I decided to meet that need.
From the looks of it, it seems you are very passionate about the work you’re doing in Baked treats, where does this passion come from?
I absolutely am! I have an artistic streak in me, so for me to be able to put that creativity into something keeps me going. The ability to envision something and then create it is very satisfying. Some of the cakes I am asked to bake are challenging, but I do like a challenge, so that helps me get through it. I’m also inspired by some of the bakers I watch on youtube and seeing what they create and the excellence with which they carry out their baking really motivates me to do more and to improve.
There are lots of students who are trying to turn their passions or interests into something more than just a hobby. What has helped you in achieving this and what advice can you give to other students trying to do the same?
JUST DO IT! I know it sounds cliché and not realistic but sometimes that is all you need. It is so easy to give yourself a reason as to why you cannot do something, easier than it is to take a step of faith. When I started Baked Treats, I started in the dorm and I bought a small oven from Metro, and started testing out different recipes and ingredients. The first time I shared my products, I went door to door in the dorm giving people cupcakes and asking them to follow my Facebook page. I didn’t start with much, but I had passion and motivation to make it work. I would also say, be willing to improve and take constructive criticism. It will go a long way in the future.
What difficulties did you experience starting off and today, and how did you overcome them?
I had challenges finding ingredients that would produce the best bakes. Getting the word out there was slow at the beginning: constantly having to tell people about your company and hoping they would trust you and give you a chance to prove yourself. Staying consistent was also difficult at that time for me. I overcame most of these challenges by constantly striving to improve myself, and not being afraid of criticism. With the ingredients I had to test out as many brands as possible and stick to what worked best for me and not try to replicate someone else’s recipe or method.
What do you look forward to about the future? Are you nervous or excited?
I look forward to graduating, getting married, starting my own family and discovering more about myself, my passions and interests. Growing as an individual and not being afraid of difficulties I might face. I’m a bit nervous about what life after graduating will truly be like.
Share with us your favourite quote before you go!
My favourite quote is a bible verse which says, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10