Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Are Erasmus-Students only stupid tourists?

There's no need to tell you that being a tourist is awesome. You can explore a city free of home-bound worries, judge its beauty and people without self being at question. Mostly, touristic holiday is a time of fear-free spending and giving in to temptations of all sorts.

Being an Erasmus student is pretty cool, too. You get to know a whole bunch of people from a whole bunch of countries, even from all over the world. Your English becomes more and more fluent on a daily basis, without any hard work. You can explore a city and actually live in it, which means that as soon as you've found awesome places, you can keep visiting them.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Having the time of my life! (or maybe not?)

The end of the semester came as a surprise for me. One might think this impossible, but really, all of a sudden it hit me, that my first and last Erasmus semester was just... over. I was so absorbed by deadlines, readings and presentations that I barely noticed the inevitable. That is, until last Friday afternoon my teacher dismissed me from my very last class.

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Why Budapest? - How Erasmus students choose their host university

… and why this choice has a huge meaning. 

As an Erasmus student, you will find yourself answering the same questions all the time: Where are you from and why did you come here? It is indeed interesting: Me and a lot of other young adults from all over Europe chose to spent a semester or two in Budapest. Here we meet, and we have various reasons. 

Monday, 5 May 2014

What happens while you are abroad

Last night I chatted with my dear friend Sebastian about all kinds of topics. Totally out of context he then updated me on some important developments in German pop culture:
"[22:29:30] Sebastian: Germany's Next Topmodel has been trying to establish hippie-flower-crowns since the first episode of this season, so don't be surprised when you get back."
Not only did this statement make me laugh out loud, but also I started wondering: Will I notice a difference when I get back? Will people have changed? Will there be new fashion trends? And that's not all: a show like Germany's Next Topmodel can incite and reflect debates that are not merely fashion-related, but concern society on a larger level:
"[22:30:35] Sebastian: and since the first episode they've shown Heidi [Klum, the host of the show] eating at a buffet at least once per episode."
Will I also miss new developments in pop cultural discourse or politics? Will I come back and see a difference in the way people behave and talk, in the things I talk about, because of the time that has passed?

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Survey - Erasmus students and their sex lives

Dear readers and fellow Erasmus students,

I have a favor to ask of you. Please take four minutes of your precious time and answer the following questionnaire. It will help me to gain data about Erasmus students and their sex lives. Later, you can read about the results here, so we can finally talk about what everybody wants to talk about! Feel free to also share it on Facebook, Twitter and other social media channels. Just make sure that it is explicitly for Erasmus students. 
Thank you very much in advance!

Survey: Erasmus students and their sex lives

Sunday, 27 April 2014

The Art of Asking and Listening

Last night I faced a special situation: I found myself discussing local politics with several international students and Hungarian locals. One might think that's not very surprising because I am living in Hungary after all – but actually it is.

Monday, 21 April 2014

8 ways students define their Erasmus experience

I started a little experiment in order to find out how actual Erasmus students define their experience! Data collection prove to be difficult. About two week ago, I shared the following query in three Facebook groups: “FOR ERASMUS STUDENTS! Please finish this sentence: 'Erasmus is about ... ' in a comment or pm to me.” I also explained it was about a little research for my blog. The response rate was a bit shameful. In three Facebook groups for Erasmus Exchange students in Budapest, with 3757, 1193 and 42 members, I received 5 answers in comments, and 1 personal message. I asked 3 people in person. In total there were 8 different answers that I want to have a closer look at in this post.


The party anthem

One person stated that Erasmus is about “...systematically destroying your liver!”. By this, s*he plays with the very common stereotype that international students spend most of their time abroad in the company of alcoholic drinks. Is this supposed to be lifting their spirits? Well, after a thorough examination I have to negate.