Meet our incoming students
Crystal Ching Ching Li, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. China
Exploring the diversified culture would be achieved in this exchange experience, therefore inspiring me to think about the practice of some usual system and find the most efficient method. Another advantage is definitely to make friends who are different from your home University. You are no longer a local student who may contact with your friends, but also have more opportunities to know friends around the globe. Cultural communication is really amazing.
I like this city which offers me the comfort and safe environment. Professors from different fields are professional and you can learn more from them. However, I would suggest the school to offer more freedom to students if they have important reasons to apply for change of examination date individually. Since I encounter difficulty in time conflict with my important career examination in London and the exchange University examination, but I could not apply for taking the exchange University examination earlier individually. This definitely hinders my career development and it's a very large obstacle. I hope the school can really seriously consider the applicant student's reason and have some adjustment, instead of strictly following the school rule.
Living and studying in Spain widens my horizons of another lifestyle and mode of thinking. For example, the effort made by the local government to attract more tourists and make them travel more conveniently to maximize profit.
The school offers the educational orientation days and activities to welcome the exchange students. The buddy programme is nice as well, which solved our questions while living in a different country.
Language preparing is definitely an important tool for us to live more properly and conveniently. The psychological preparation of stepping out from the comfort zone to make new friends is essential as well.
The most difficult thing is the arrangement of the personal stuff and academic stuff. As time is too limited and there may be time conflict. The problems of maintain relationship with family or friends, living style in another country are not severe to me. I like experiencing new things.
Shirley Gao, University of New South Wales. Australia
Coming from a big city on the opposite side of the world to being an exchange student at the Universidad de Navarra in Pamplona has been a challenging but exhilarating experience. Adapting to a different culture and learning to speak the language was initially difficult, however the university staff have been very accommodating and its students are always more than happy to help if I was unsure of anything. Pamplona is a very quiet city but has a beautiful combination of tradition in the old part of town, modernity in its city centre and nature, evident in the mountains surrounding the city. Although I may never get used to the idea of having siestas and very late dinners, it all adds to the Spanish experience and I am enjoying every moment of it!
Vasiliki (Vicky) Psoma, Athens University of Economics and Business, Greece
First of all I have to say that I like studying here very much and that it's much better than what I expected!
The advantages of studying abroad are many! Here I have seen a different way of teaching as every one of my classes has presentations, projects etc., which makes you attend all the classes and be very interested in them! Also, it's very interesting that I have seen a different way that some of my classmates cope with some projects! For example, in Greece we don't have so many projects and for some classes we only have to study slides which is very boring and doesn't help you understand the content of the lesson in depth. Moreover, I am very excited about the building! It's very organised, clean and comfortable! I have been welcomed in a very good way and I think that the trip to San Sebastian helps the students meet each other! My advice to other exchange students could be a lot of things. I will choose two of the most important things for me! Firstly, to come here to find a room and not to book via Internet! And second and very, very important for me that determines this experience: Don't go to a country for Erasmus with your friends from your country! I came alone and every day I feel so happy for it because it's the only way to learn in depth about other people and cultures! There are many days that I haven't spoken my language at all and I think it's very strange and beautiful at the same time! There is not a specific difficult thing that I face...Maybe my adaptation in the first 2 weeks, until I made some friends, and spoke English more fluently, learning about the city. But I think that is very normal and now I don't even remember my most difficult days. I am very satisfied here and I enjoy my experience every day!
Yilin Hai, University of Tsinghua, China
It's an exciting thing to study abroad for me, because Spain is a totally different country from China. Everything seems new to me, not only the architecture and foods, but also the language, which make it more like an adventure.
It took me several days to figure out why I am here and to adapt to this new life. I won't say it was easy to live on your own and try to communicate with people from different cultures. But during this period of time, many things that had never occurred to me appeared and they forced me to think about life, as well as the future. What's more, when talking with foreign friends, I noticed the difference between cultures and try to see things in some brand new ways.
Now I'm quite used to the new life and want to lead it to the fullest. I am learning Spanish and also trying to travel a lot (although the holidays are few). I want to know more about here, about Europe.
If you are preparing for an exchange, taking the optimism as well as your passion will be enough. With them, you can definitely find your way.