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29.03.2010
15:00

Moving to Spain

At the beginning of January it was finally time for me to move to Spain, after waiting to do so for almost my entire third semester. I have to say, though, that not everything about the change of countries was easy. First of all, finding a flat in Barcelona was interesting. The flats, and especially rooms in flat sharing, are usually not what they look like on the pictures I got send before visiting the flats. This meant that I had to look at several places before I found somewhere I liked and wanted to live for the next month.

Another problem I had was getting used to the different systems of universities. At my Spanish University we have to hand in homework in nearly every subject once a week, write papers and prepare presentations. On one hand it is a nice experience because the exams are only a fraction of our final grades which means that I will not have to study as hard at the end to pass the courses. Though, on the other hand, there are basically deadlines every day and it is a lot more intense to keep up with all the dates.

Although there has been a lot of personal adjustment from my part, after having been in Barcelona for a few weeks now, I am enjoying my time here. The weather is great; the sun is shining a lot. Also, I do have enough free time to go and do sports every other day. As for my cultural activities, Spain is a good country to go out dancing with friends, especially Salsa, and to have a glass of “Cava”.

25.03.2010
15:00

Practical Experience at EBS: Smile

Leadership, Management, Organisation and Planning are words that frequently appear during the lectures at the EBS; however, theory and practice are usually two different things.

At EBS, we actually have the opportunity to acquire knowledge about how organisations work and how tasks can be solved. We can do this by participating in one of the different student initiatives, called Ressorts. Ressorts are centrally delegated and organised in our ?Studentenschaft?. Basically every student participates in at least one out of the 19 Ressorts, which differ a lot. The biggest and probably best known is called Symposium (www.ebs-symposium.de), but beside s that there are also groups organising the student parties or MAD (Make A Difference), which is engaged in several social issues.

One of the initiatives I took part in was SMILE (Students Marketing Initiative Linking Europe). We organised the 11th SMILE Marketing Forum in October of last year with the topic ?Marketing and its limits ? gewagt wie nie zuvor?. It was an interesting experience during which I saw how much work needs to be done in order to set up a larger scale event such as a congress.

Our work started about a year in advance. We had to choose a topic, find a date, start talking to companies in order to find speakers that had interesting and maybe even controversial views on our topic. Additionally we had to acquire sponsors, design our posters and flyers and think the whole day through in order to not forget any important detail.

Over the months our planning became more precise; we had our first speakers and sponsors, the first participants sent their applications, and our planning went into the final stages. Because our organisational group was made up of only seven persons, we needed some extra help for the actual day. Some of the greatest problems that we faced were: short-notice cancellation of speakers, helpers that could not make it, and rooms that were double booked. These challenges required last-minute creativity from our part.

Despite minor problems, the day turned out great. We had brilliant speakers such as Mr.Bräunl, the Marketing Director of BMW, and a lot of sponsors including Vodafone, Tchibo and Lindt. Attendees had many opportunities to communicate with other participants and speakers. Some of the talks were even interactive. Overall, I feel that the day turned out to be a great success, and I can only thank the others in the team and in particular our group leaders, sponsors and speakers again for this great opportunity.

19.02.2010
15:00

My First Week in Spain

My semester started at the very beginning of the New Year 2010 on January 7th. Because the date was so close to Christmas, I was not able to arrive in Barcelona a long time before university started. My first day was an introduction day where we got most of the important information about the university, the lectures, and about Barcelona in general.

From the second day on we started with our normal lectures and courses, and it did not take long for me to find out the first differences between the system here and the system at the EBS. A very obvious difference was the size of the university; there are around 5,000 to 6,000 students here, which people here say is a small university!

Generally, the whole system is more similar to high school. In the lectures here there is a maximum of 30 students. In every subject we have two two-hour lectures and one exercise group a week, which means most of the learning is done in class. Additionally, our participation during the lectures and our weekly homework (!) make up around 30%-50% of our grades in most of the subjects. The only difference which is not similar to my time in high school is the times our lectures start. As all of us know, punctuality is more important in Germany than in the majority of the more southern countries in Europe. Our lectures don’t ever start before 10 minutes after the official time they are meant to start. Well, viva España!!!

15.02.2010
15:00

Why I Chose to Study Abroad in Spain

Currently I am an exchange student at the UPF (Universitat Pompeu Fabra) in Barcelona, Spain. You might be wondering how, out of all the countries in the world, I decided to come to Spain. The first decision I made was to go to a Spanish speaking country because I am studying Business Languages. Finally, I wanted to get my Spanish skills to a standard where I would be able to speak fluently. Additionally, I had already been to Spain several times and enjoyed the culture and the mentality of the people a lot. The open-mindedness, the music and dances, the food and the laid back and generally sociable attitude of the people are some of the things I really enjoyed.

Regarding my choice of university in Spain, the UPF is the second best business school in Spain and is a short distance to the beach-- in addition to the good weather. These were factors that made it even easier to decide to come here. At the end of the day, the semester abroad is not supposed to be solely about academics but also a time where we as students are meant to experience different cultures and different systems of learning. It is a time where we are able to meet new people, where we have to show that we are able to adapt to new surroundings, and where we have to learn to organise ourselves and be more independent.

10.02.2010
15:00

EBS Bachelor Blogger: Maike

Hey everyone,

My name is Maike and I started my Bachelor studies in General Management at the European Business School in September 2008. I am currently in my second year at EBS where my focus is on business languages, particularly Spanish. In January 2010 I will be going to Spain for my semester abroad.

I came to the EBS from Hamburg, in the north of Germany, where I was born and where I lived for most of my life. However, the last two years of secondary school I spent in a boarding school in England. I was 16 when I went to the small village of Worksop, located at the northern edge of the Sherwood Forrest. It was an interesting experience living in a different country, meeting new people and being without my parents. Over my two years abroad in England I became a lot more independent, learned very much about myself and got to know another culture. One of the most interesting things about being abroad was being a foreigner and a stranger in a new land, specifically entering a new environment, realising how many differences there were and, by the end of my time there, managing to fit in. The year after I graduated from school I took a gap year where I did some internships and was a leader on an interchange with children from Colombia.

Although I have been at the EBS for nearly one and a half years now, it feels like a lot longer because so many things have happened. EBS expects a high level of academic excellence, which takes up a lot of my time, but there are several other non-curricular activities I enjoy as well. I have attended numerous congresses and was able to help organize some of those events, have had many opportunities to meet and listen to the talks of representatives of a number of companies, have participated in competitions, and have enjoyed spending time with new friends.

This was a first brief insight into my life, and I hope I will be able to give you some interesting information about the EBS in general and my study program, as well as a few cultural insights from my own experiences.

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