WHY YOU SHOULD PARTICIPATE IN THE ERASMUS PROGRAMME?
Have you ever wanted to live abroad and experience a foreign culture, meet new people, and learn a foreign language?
Have you ever thought about enriching the period of your studies and having better chances while looking for a job in the future?
Erasmus programme is a great opportunity to spend between 3 and 12 months in another European country, and have it count towards your degree. You get to experience another culture and a new way of looking at your subject. You can make new friends and grow as a person.
What is Erasmus?
The ERASMUS programme is a European student exchange programme established in 1987 offering university students a possibility of studying or working abroad in another European country for a period of at least 3 months and maximum 12 months. The name of the project refers to Dutch Renaissance humanist and theologian Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam. He studied at diverse European universities and described the education as a chance for modern people.
Since 2007 the Erasmus project is a part of The Lifelong Learning Programme, which is determined for the years 2007-2013.
Who can go on Erasmus?
Apart from the students, the mobility offered by the Erasmus programme is dedicated for professors and universities’ staff as well.
The programme is open to 33 countries: Member States of the European Union, EU candidate countries and EFTA / EEA members.
Money? Courses? Languages?
Each student receives a grant which covers partly the costs of the stay abroad. Students going on exchange under the ERASMUS programme do not pay any university fees. All rights and obligations of exchange students are described in the Erasmus Student Charter.
One of the basic rights each exchange student has is the full recognition of courses passed successfully abroad by the home university. Before leaving the home university, the participating student signs the Learning Agreement – a document that describes the programme of studies followed in the host university. At the end of the stay the host university should prepare for the student a document called the Transcript of Records that confirms the completed studies’ program and the results.
In addition, students can improve their language skills by participating in one of the Erasmus Intensive Language Courses offered at the host university.
The opportunities are endless.
The friends and memories last a lifetime. The Erasmus exchange program is one of the greatest culture and character building programs that you can have in your whole life.
VIVES is a great university (INFO)
Since September 2013, KATHO and KHBO have become VIVES, as a result of the cooperation between KATHO, with campuses in Kortrijk, Roeselare, Tielt, Torhout and KHBO, with campuses in Brugge and Oostende. At this moment, mergers in the field of higher education are a common trend in Flanders. With approximately 13,000 students, VIVES is the biggest university college in Flanders.
Everybody is able to speak English so you have the chance to improve. In the Erasmus programme in Kortrijk there are more than 100 Erasmus students from different countries and you must communicate with them in English, in this University you also can follow some courses of languages (hitek) and you can choose between different important languages as Spanish, French, German, Italian, and Dutch…
You will know people from all around the world!
You’ll have friends from all over the world! Erasmus is a truly international student experience and you get to know different cultures just by talking to your classmates. You’ll learn all kinds of things about them and you’ll get to tell them everything about your own country! Don’t be surprised if, like myself, you get caught in the middle of a crazy night where you end up drinking Polish vodka and eating French pastry while singing the Italian anthem with your neighbours in the streets. In Erasmus, all kinds of things can happen and you can count on your new international friends for that.
You will enjoy the parties!
Oh boy! This is what people warn you about – the parties, the drinking and all that stupid crazy dancing… You’ll do all that and much more! Erasmus is kind of a YOLO moment that lasts 6 whole months. You’ll have the best parties and you’ll dance to every single tune just because you’re having the time of your life.
You can travel easily around Europe, because Belgium is in the middle of Europe!
Alright, you’re probably going to be studying in a country that you’ve never been to before, so you might as well travel. If you’re an Erasmus student you need to do as much as you can and get the best out of your experience. Take a night train across the border, go on a bike ride to the beach and see Europe like you’ve never seen it before.
You’ll have your own student home!
You’ll never forget the crazy house parties, your roommates and the loving neighbours, waking up late and studying in the terrace and all the memories (literally!) written on those walls.
You will learn how to be independent!
You will have a good opportunity to discover that you know to do things that you have never did before. For example you will learn how to cook by yourself.
That’s what will happen if you have never cooked before.
But after that you will become a master chef.
You can cook traditional food from your country and after that to share it with other colleagues from house. They can do the same next day. Everybody knows that if you want to know information about country the best thing that you can do is to try their food first. You will say at the end: I’m capable of doing it!
Erasmus gives you the opportunity to mature and test yourself.
More history, more culture!
Your friends will tell you a lot of stories about their country. It’s a great oportunity to know what is the political situation from different countries. What are the rules that you must follow in some countries (example: arabic or muslim countries) and what happens if you don’t respect those rules. How can you start a business in the country that you allways wanted to discover.
Friends all over the world!
You will make friendships that will last forever. After years when you will want to visit a country you can sleep at your friends house. Of course you will need to do the same .
Different people ,different styles!
We are not the same. It’s impossible not to notice that every people from the world have his own style. You will see that according to the country that they are coming from this style is accentuated. You will notice the cultural differences.
This will help you to understand the way that another person is working.
You have to live this experience to understand it.
You will never get bored!
There is always something to do, beautiful people to meet, a trip to make…You will do things that you can’t do in your home town.
MY OWN EXPERIENCE
So finally I will explain my own experience as Erasmus student during one year in Kortrijk.
In my opinion everything was easy since the beginning. When I arrived to Kortrijk someone from university was waiting us in the train station and leaves me in my new home “terrace house”, and in less than one hour my new housemates already give me some bear as a welcome gift, this is just one example of what Erasmus experience is. Here in Kortrijk you have all the facilities to enjoy a really good experience, meet new people coming from different countries with the same expectations as you, you will find new family and you will grow as person.
I had the opportunity to travel around Europe, I visited Holland, France, UK, Italy, Poland, Lithuania and all around Belgium of course. When you travel you know places that you have never been before and you can try your communication skills with people who doesn’t speak your language and you learn how to survive without help, and I think that this is really important to every people.
When I remind about the studies I have to say that I really liked the kind of education that the University VIVES give to their students, because you study courses about a lot of different aspects, and in my opinion is really good method to learn practicing different cases in different areas because in this form you specialize in many subjects and that can be useful in your future, and to be honest is not really difficult to pass the subjects, you have to work but is not necessary to study too much.
To sum up I would say that I recommend everybody to come to enjoy the Erasmus experience in Kortrijk because I’m quite sure that you will spend the best year in your own life and you will never forget what you lived there.
Don’t think about it. LIVE YOUR ERASMUS.
This assignment was made by Anna Kowal , Teodor Savu, Francisco Masia Martinez