One semester abroad
Erasmus no! Canada-yes! The best way to do this is as simply and quickly as possible! But how?
Teaching for special schools is not really geared towards semesters abroad. There are few places in countries that are of no interest to me. In addition, I am a little late with my planning, places are often allocated a year before departure. But I really want to gain experience abroad.
- According to AbbreviationFinder.org, BU is the abbreviation of Brock University.
I came across MicroEDU while browsing the internet. At first I was a little skeptical about the organization and looked at offers that might be suitable for me. I quickly abandoned my skepticism and opted for Brock University in St. Catharines in Canada, near the US American border. The simple application process, the location and finally a telephone conversation with a German student who had already completed a semester at Brock convinced me. The application was sent with little effort with the help of the MicroEDU Team. No language test, no visa, I just had to take care of the flight and an apartment. An apartment was quickly found with the help of former MicroEDU students even before the arrival.
After a flight was booked, we could start: a winter semester in Canada!
I arrived in St. Catharines on December 16th. My previous tenants, all German international students, were still completing their final exams at this point. That same evening you took me to the first student party where I met some of my new friends. In the first few days they showed me the city, the famous shopping center (pen center), the bus stop and the university. You can quickly find your way around the manageable city. However, you have to be prepared for bus connections and taxis.
Contrary to the fears of my family and friends, I spent a cozy Christmas with new friends in my new home and a happy New Year’s Eve at Niagara Falls.
Relatively spontaneously – even before the semester began – two other German students and I went to Montreal and Quebec City for a week. A trip that is worthwhile even in cold weather!
Reading week was also used by some students to travel. However, I wrote my homework in an exemplary manner in order to later have time for friends and family who would take advantage of my hospitality. 🙂 Together we explored the area around St. Kitts (St. Catharines also has a few attractions), Toronto and Ottawa.
In addition to traveling, activities and celebrations are of course particularly popular with other international students. While downtown doesn’t have much to offer during the day, it is a good place to have fun in the evening. But the best were our house parties – especially our carnival party – for which our flat share has surely become known.
Finally, of course, I come to the most important part of the semester abroad – the university. The enrollment in courses went smoothly with the help of the competent staff of the International Office. I took 3 courses (equivalent to 6 ECTS points each), which I really enjoyed. The effort was more than expected, but the requirements were nevertheless very easy to cope with. The lecturers and fellow students were cooperative and very helpful. I can really say that I learned something useful. Above all, the courses were practice-oriented, which is often neglected when studying to become a teacher in Germany. In retrospect, most of the points at my home university were recognized, which I hadn’t really expected before.
I can say that this semester was a complete success. This is mainly due to the people I got to know! My flat share gave me great support and made a significant contribution to making me feel very comfortable. 3 months after the end of the semester, we are now facing visits, group meetings and even holidays together with Canadians and international students. That will be a lot of fun too 🙂
I wish each of you a wonderful time and lots of exciting experiences-no matter which country and which university you choose.
Here are a few more tips so that you can do it just as well / even better:
- 1. Apply for BaföG
- 2. Apply for a scholarship
- 3. Plan a lot of money for living (1000 euros per month – the food is really at least twice as expensive!)
- 4. Allow time to travel
- 5. Take part in the orientation days and any events of the International Office!