- Inga Cords (Riga)
- Lea-Eliza Jesseit (Sweden)
- Lena Ball & Rebekka Stettnisch (Norway)
- Anna Lena Keppler & Jonas Weinberg (Cyprus)
- Annika Meyer (Australia)
- Charlotte Collard (Spain)
- Bünyamin Aksoy (Thailand)
- Florian Bühnemann (Russia)
- Christopher Blanck (Spain)
- Marvin Dötsch (Finland)
I’m Inga and in the 6th Semester of BMS. For 5 weeks I am already in Riga. Even though of the current lockdown situation, there are still so many things to do in the city and in the surrounding national parks. The transportation options are really good and extremely cheap price offers for Erasmus students.
All my courses are fully taught online and there are only international students in the courses of my faculty. Each week I have to prepare a presentation and homework for each course. At first, I was a bit overwhelmed by the workload, but it is manageable and you can meet lots of different students from different nationalities in the group works.
I’m extremely happy, that I took the chance to go to Latvia and to live in the beautiful city of Riga. Let’s see what the upcoming months have to offer.
Report Semester abroad Högskolan Dalarna Sweden
My semester abroad in Borlänge, Sweden was marked by interesting study content, great student community as well as incredible nature. From January onwards, the winter brought masses of snow and temperatures below -20 degree. One skiing resort is only 20 minutes away by car and we spent many days out on the slopes during the first months of this year. Now in spring, the region offers fantastic nature for hikes and excursions.
The university is very open-minded and always a friendly help. It is a relaxed learning atmosphere, and the lectures are mostly online. Even though Borlänge itself is a small city, there is a large international community of Erasmus students. There are seemingly more international than local students and there are a lot of possibilities to get to know each other. However, the city has mostly everything the heart desires from restaurants and cosy cafes to a large shopping centre and small second-hand stores.
The semester is divided into two terms and I had two courses each. The university is spread over the campus in Borlänge and the one in Falun. Falun, as the capital of the state of Dalarna, is 15km away and characterised by a bit more culture and history and is definitely worth a visit. Both university buildings have their own charm but studying in Falun is similarly nice if you need change of scenery. I am happy I came here to study abroad and that I came by car and if it is possible, I would highly recommend it for trips around the region. Nevertheless, renting a car is possible and the public transport is well accessible. The area in the heart of Dalarna is magnificent for trips to the surrounding towns but also to the east coast or the west coast. Hälsningar från Sverige - Lea
Hey, I'm Lena and I'm currently on a semester abroad in Ålesund, Norway. Ålesund is located on a peninsula in Fjord Norway, which means that the mountains and the sea are in one spot. My friends and I regularly take advantage of this and spend the weekends both in the mountains and at - and hopefully in - the sea when it's a bit warmer! In Ålesund, the Corona numbers are rather low, which is why not only the shops, bars and restaurants are open here, but also many events such as film nights and quiz nights take place. Of course, we try to see as much of the country as possible and this includes smaller trips like the ones to Geiranger Fjord or the Stranda ski resort, as well as a small Easter trip to Tromsø and the North Cape with some friends.
Hey fra Oslo!
I'm Rebekka and I'm studying BMS in my 7th semester. At the moment I'm doing my internship at MAN Truck & Bus in Norway. MAN Norge is a subsidiary of MAN AG and is part of the Volkswagen Group. We export trucks, buses and vans from Germany, organise the bodies and then import them to Norway. I work here in the logistics department. We take care of the export documentation and communication with the partners in Europe. Since Norway itself is not a member of the EU, this is a very versatile job.
Oslo is a fantastic place to live, there is something for everyone: for city people there are many bars, cafés, museums and events. And for those who prefer to blend in with the Norwegians, within 20 minutes you can reach the next mountain to enjoy the view of the fjords.
Best wishes from snowy Norway and ha det bra!
I'm Anna and in the 6th Semester of International Management Studies in the Baltic Sea Region. At the moment I'm in Nicosia for my Semester aboard. I never thought that I would be able to settle in and socialize so quickly (especially because of the pandemic). But now I have been living on the beautiful island for more than 2 months and I enjoy every day to the fullest.
At the moment there are still some restrictions due to the pandemic, such as the curfew from 11pm to 5am. But bars, restaurants and stores have been open again since a few weeks. Also, Erasmus events like a karaoke night, boat parties or weekend excursions are taking place again. Not only through the events but also through the online courses you get to know many people, can quickly connect and explore the island together on your own. I've already had the opportunity to visit several beautiful beaches, see the Sea Caves with incredible blue water and drive into the Troodos Mountains and be surprised by a snowstorm, yes exactly the island really has everything to offer.
As mentioned before, the courses are all online at the moment, which I personally find very unfortunate, but on the other hand the professors show a lot of consideration and understanding because of the situation. The amount of work is really okay, in each course there is a mid-term exam, a project and a final exam. In addition, the university is very well prepared in terms of online classes and exams and the online portals are easy to use. I am very glad that I took the chance to go to Cyprus for my semester abroad and live in the divided capital Nicosia. I would definitely make this decision again and I am looking forward to the coming months with many unforgettable experiences.
Erasmus during a pandemic? I thought Why not and wasn’t disappointed!
To be quite honest at first I had a lot of doubts, travel restrictions, a series of COVID tests and organizing everything online. But once I set my first step out of the plane suddenly life took a U-turn. With sun in my face and 20°C I headed out to Nicosia Cyprus. What hit me first was the open mindedness of the people you meet here, there was no need to find a way to the city, cause a young Cypriot student offered to take me to my place.
So there I was in Georgiou Seferi one of the two streets downtown where all the Erasmus students live. It took merely a walk to the balcony to get in touch with fellow Erasmus students, so suddenly a life different to what we’re used to in Germany with all the restrictive measures was possible. Of course I didn’t solely come here to socialize and travel the island to Aya Napa and the Sea caves, the actual goal was studying.
Yet, also this was stunningly easy in terms of organization. The University of Nicosia offers a perfectly integrated online platform, which automatically adds your chosen Erasmus courses to your schedule. Once logged in you just click on the course during it’s scheduled time and the online session opens. Workload is comparable to Hochschule Stralsund and the professors offer help and understanding for the current online teaching situation. Choosing at maximum five courses during Erasmus, I sure had enough spare time to enjoy the cultural life in Nicosia once bars and restaurants reopened in March.
Lastly, I quite frankly came to the conclusion taking the step to go to Nicosia in Cyprus, was probably one of the best I’ve ever taken in my life. I fell in love with Pitas the Cypriot bread, tortillas patatas by the Spanish, and Greek souvlaki. So if you’re hesitating where to go, this island offers all you can imagine and maybe even a bit more you can’t think of yet ☀️
óla ta kalýtera apó tin Kýpro - all the best from Cyprus
My semester in Australia
I currently spend my sixth semester at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) in Australia. As the name implies, the university is located on the Sunshine Coast in a small town called Sippy Downs.
The campus is located in a nature reserve, so on the way to the university I am joined by kangaroos, which makes me happy every day.
At the USC we are studying with many international students and next to our academic studies we enjoy life at the Sunshine Coast! Buses to Mooloolaba leave regularly from the bus station of the university. Mooloolaba has a beautiful beach where you can spend study breaks, enjoy the beautiful weather or just stroll along the promenade, have a look at the small shops and enjoy good food in a variety of restaurants and cafés.
Brisbane is just an hour away by car. The capital of Queensland is a vibrant city with more than two million inhabitants. The neighbouring area around Sippy Dows has a lot to offer as well, such as the Glasshouse Mountains, the pretty coast town Noosa or the beautiful Hinterland.
The tropical landscape is very diverse and offers new and exotic things to discover. The USC was founded in 1996. With about 6.500 students it is one of the most modern universities and a high academic level in the booming part of Australia.
The biggest difference to the German university is that most of the courses have three exams or assignments during the semester, this means you always have to study or write an assignment. The professors are open and helpful at all times and there are many further options to get support as a student.
So, if you like to go to the beach to recover from learning and enjoy the warming sun in an exotic environment, the USC is the right place for you. I warmly recommend it.
For my internship semester, I decided to go abroad, in order to not only gain professional experience but also experience another culture. As I wanted to stay in central Europe but still discover a substantially different work environment, I decided to go to Barcelona. After a first bad experience in a consulting company, I started to work for a company working in the tourism industry. Although I firstly thought of it as an emergency solution, it then ended being the right company for me. Hence, I was involved in many different business processes and could work independently. All in all, although I could not imagine myself working in Spain forever, as of the working conditions offered, I learned much about the culture as well as its work environment and acquired many skills which will be useful in the future.
My internship in Bangkok
My name is Bünyamin Aksoy, I am 25 years old and I am studying Baltic Management Studies at the Hochschule Stralsund.
In our studies, we were supposed to complete an internship for over 5 months, so I decided to do my internship abroad to gain insights into the working environment, working atmosphere and culture in a different country. For me, Thailand was the most attractive country to do my internship. Asia as a continent itself, is the fastest growing economic region in the world, as well as the largest continental economy by both GDP and PPP according to the IMF.
Thailand is the 8th largest economy in Asia and the second-largest economy in Southeast-Asia. The real estate sector is also on the rise - especially in Bangkok. The high demand for properties makes the real estate business very interesting. Furthermore, living expenses are affordable. Therefore, I decided to apply for an internship at RE/MAX Thailand, another deciding factor was because my interest in the real estate business. RE/MAX is the world’s largest franchise real estate business with a presence in 110 countries, more than 8200 offices and 124,000 agents. The internship takes place at the RE/MAX Thailand Head Office in Bangkok. It is the master franchise and develops new offices around the country. In addition to that, the Head Office provides training for new agents and brokers as well as services for developers.
During my internship, I work as the business development coordinator at RE/MAX Thailand. My tasks include improving the work in the marketing department to gain
more leads and potential customers to sell more franchises. The Head Office presents their development services with the aim to sign exclusive contracts with the developers. To accomplish these tasks, I develop and work on surveys to gain information about customer behaviour. After formulating the results, I analyse and share it with the marketing department to help improve processes and further marketing campaigns. I also contact developers and set up meetings with the responsible managers. During the meetings, I present to them our company, the real estate business opportunities in Thailand and in turn, offer solutions and services to meet their needs. We also travel across the country to give real estate seminars, whereby we give information about the real estate business opportunities and recruit new agents and brokers to increase the RE/MAX company footprint in Thailand. The office atmosphere is very pleasant. The people here are very kind, helpful and always in a good mood. The dynamic between the staff as well as the interaction with the boss, is very familiar and informal. I enjoy working with them because I can learn a lot and improve my skills in relation to business and specifically, the real estate industry. Besides work, I travel a lot in my free time. Thailand is a stunningly beautiful country with staggering beaches, mesmerising islands and breathtaking mountains and jungles. Bangkok, the capital city, has more than 8.5 million inhabitants, multiple skyscrapers and delicious Thai food which is sometimes spicy. For these reasons and more, Thailand is a special place to live in.
Overall, the decision to do my internship in Thailand was a very good one. To date, my internship has been very rewarding - I have had interesting and challenging tasks which enabled me to improve my knowledge and skills. I have sufficient time to travel around Bangkok and across the country and due to the affordability, I have enjoyed the beautiful sites this country has to offer.
I can recommend Thailand to anyone who wants to enjoy a very colourful culture, kind people, nice weather and beautiful landscape.
My semester(s) abroad in St. Petersburg
Currently I am spending my 5. Semester at the Peter the Great Polytechnic University in St. Petersburg. To receive a double degree, I will also spend my 6. Semester here in Russia. The campus is located north of the city center and it takes roughly 30 minutes by metro to go to the Nevsky Prospect which is the main road in St. Petersburg. It’s just a five minutes walking distance from the dormitory to most of my lectures.
Most of the time the weather here is rainy and cloudy. Nevertheless, St. Petersburg is a beautiful city. Especially at night, when the building in the city center are enlightened. There are countless museums, cafes and bars where you can escape from the rain. Also, compared to other countries, the cost of living in St. Petersburg is comparatively low for a major city with almost five million inhabitants.
I can imagine, that for many people the language is one reason not to go to St. Petersburg. Of course, speaking a little bit of Russian will help you a lot, but you will also get along just fine if you only speak English.
In Russia administration often is a chaos and sometimes I had the feeling that no one really seems to know who is responsible for my issues. Nevertheless, everyone is friendly and tries to help you as best they can and at the end of the day there has never been a problem which couldn’t be solved. At some point you just stop worrying about what could go wrong, or which problem comes next. There will be another problem as well as another solution to this problem.
For those of you who are looking for an adventure in a beautiful city and maybe want to step a little bit out of their comfort zone, I can warmly recommend to study in St. Petersburg.
My Semester(s) abroad in Vigo (Spain)
Vigo, a city in the north east of Spain in the province of Galicia. Never heard of it? – Well, me neither before started to look for partner universities abroad. The University of Vigo is one of the biggest in Galicia with 22,000 students, various faculties and lots of great events.
Currently, I am studying BMS in the 5th semester and I decided to absolve my 5th and 6th semester in Vigo. In the beginning, the most important aspect were the courses I could take at the university of Vigo. Referring to the course offer it is important to know that there are lots of courses in English in various faculties. Some of the faculties are located on the main campus and some are in the city centre. If you are interested in studying in Vigo but you don’t speak Spanish it is not a problem as long as you plan your courses well beforehand.
Certainly, there are some difficulties in finding the right courses due to the fact, that they are spread over different faculties. Nevertheless, it is possible to find enough courses in English for the two semesters and the coordinators of the Erasmus students in Vigo are very helpful. In general, one can say that the coordination of subjects, projects and events here in Vigo well done. However, it is very helpful to speak basic Spanish before coming here and to have the motivation to learn the language.
The city itself is certainly not the most beautiful place to be in Spain. Nevertheless, it offers a diverse range of activities and cheap (+reliable) public transport to go around Galicia. Galicia in general is my favourite place to be in Spain due to its diverse and green landscape, empty beaches and perfect waves.
If you plan to have a super sunny and warm winter, I have to disappoint you. Enthought, the summer is significantly longer (until September and October) the autumn and winter months here in Vigo are rainy and fresh.
Of course, the temperature is still better then back home, but don’t expect a warm winter. By the way, it is easy to escape to Portugal (where the weather is much nicer) by bus for less than 20€ and the Uni-lifestyle will go on for a few days without you… . Furthermore, I can say that the culture of the Galician people is amazing. I really enjoy the food, the nightlife and the general mindset of the people. If you learn Spanish, it is easy to get in touch with the locals and there are lots of great places to have a vine and watch the sunset around the city. At the university they offer various activities to get to know people.
All in all, I can highly recommend the University of Vigo if you are interested in improving or learning Spanish, get to know the Spanish culture and experience great natural environment.
My semester abroad in Kouvola
I am currently spending my 5th semester abroad at the South-Eastern Finland University of applied sciences (or XAMK for short) at the campus in Kouvola. It is a small city in the south-east of Finland. And when I say small, I mean small for German standards. In Finland, just over 80.000 inhabitants make you the 10th most populated city of the country. The university had just been renovated and is therefore very modern. It is located a few hundred meters outside the city center, unfortunately on the opposite site from the student apartments. But with the rental bikes or the bus it is easily reachable even for people who don’t like walking long distances.
The city itself is fairly small but full of nature. Everything is within walking or biking distance. Lakes, Gyms, forests, the university, the city center with its shops, train station, and the large shopping mall are easily reachable. And if you are ambitious, even the national park. But I would recommend taking a bus or a car there. Kouvola itself does unfortunately not offer too much, but it is located in such a way, that you can travel very easily. You can, for example, reach St. Petersburg in two hours by train, Helsinki in just over one hour, and from Helsinki it is just 2 hours by ferry to Tallinn. But there are also a lot of smaller beautiful cities like Kotka, Lahti or Mikkeli within 2 hours of train ride from Kouvola. As train tickets cost less here than in Germany, it is a very easy way of travelling.
Summer here in Finland does not last too long and autumn is fairly short, too. The first snow fell in the middle of October, but than the weather changed to “untypically warm” so until the end of November we mainly had temperatures slightly above 0°C. We were unlucky with the weather, it was mainly gray, which in combination with the shorter days has gotten to the mood of some Erasmus students who are not used to it. The feeling of showing the Italian, Spanish and other southern students snow for the first time in their lives however sparks joy in everybody.
Coming to Finland is a great idea if you like nature, as everything is surrounded by nature here. There are up to three large parks on the way to the university already, depending on the route. As there are a lot of international students in Kouvola, you will get in touch with new people very quickly. There are a lot of possibilities to go out on evenings, be it in bars or some privately organized parties (usually by Russians) and as ways are short the way home is easily found, even after a few drinks. If you like it a bit colder and don’t mind sunsets at half past three, then coming here is one of the best things you can do, especially with the possibility of a double degree.