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My Study Programme: Bachelor in Business Languages

Here at the EBS we are taking all the foundation courses needed for our bachelor studies in Business Administration such as Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Finance, Marketing and Logistics. However, we do get additional credits for our focus subjects. Because my focus is Business Languages, in my case this focus subject is Spanish. (Other possibilities are Business Law, Business Information Technologies or Aviation). We also have subjects which are not typically taught at other universities, such as Ethics and Business & Society. These modules give us a broader understanding of the people around us, how we should behave and what consequences our actions can have.

The subjects themselves are not the only things we learn during our time at the EBS. There are a lot of skills we acquire during the three years here that cannot simply be taught. One of the most important ones is learning how to “give” presentations. We have to give several presentations a semester and are therefore able to generate a lot of practice and improve ourselves due to the feedback we receive. Furthermore, many presentations are prepared in groups. Our presentations require a lot of research which makes it necessary for us to work with our colleagues in order to share the work that needs to be done. This process can be trying, but in general it strengthens our ability to work in teams.


Why I Chose EBS

Choosing a study path is a big decision. Luckily for me I knew for a while that I wanted to study a subject related to business- but also that I did not want to be one of 300 students in a huge lecture hall. When my sister heard about the EBS at her school she brought the information materials home for me and told me that she had found the school I would want to study at. She was right. I liked the fact that I could not only study business but also languages, especially since I had already studied English and Spanish for quite some time in school. Also, I liked that classes were taught in comparably small groups.

The good reputation of the school and the large network of alumni were other facts that made me choose to apply. It was very impressive to see how many exEBS (alumni) work in or own large and well-known companies in Germany and around the world.

In Focus: Barcelona

Life in Barcelona is very different than life in Oestrich. It is a much larger city with many more people, more possibilities of shopping and going out, and a beach close to campus. The public transport system is actually connecting the place you are at with the location you want to go to. ;-) There are also a lot more attractions such as museums and places that are interesting to visit. For instance, the Sagrada Familia is a very impressive building, and the parks and houses of Dalí are lovely as well. There are numerous museums displaying arts, history or even the development of chocolate! Older buildings in the historic part of the city such as the Plaza Cataluña and the “magic fountain” (a light show with music at a fountain at night) are spectacular.

Though life in Oestrich can be small, the village life has its positive aspects as well. For instance, in Oestrich I live close to everything. The campus is nearly next door, and several of my friends live within walking distance. In Barcelona it takes a lot more planning to get a group of people to a certain place at the agreed time.

In Barcelona there are a few other things one has to learn the first days after arriving; Most important is the fact that pedestrian’s traffic lights start blinking 3 times before they turn red-- which is an important sign meaning, “Start running!”-- because the second the lights turn red, the cars start driving again. Second most important is to, “Watch your bag,” because people who don’t might get their belongings stolen several times just within the first two months. Last but not least, “Don’t ever leave the house without sunglasses!” It does not matter how cloudy the sky looks in the morning, it is likely that the sun is going to come out only a few hours later.


My Favorite Class in Spain

My most interesting subject so far was Social Entrepreneurship. I really enjoyed the subject because it was not one of the normal business or economics classes in which mathematics plays a mayor roll, but it was more thought provoking. We did learn some theoretical background in order to understand the subjects we were talking about, but the main aim of the course was to make us aware of our own actions and to make us question our decisions and ourselves.

We discussed several important social issues-- from rather big ones, such as world health, down to smaller and more local ones, such as the vicious cycle the poor farmers in Africa experience. We were discussing most problems in a rather unconventional way and started challenging existing ‘do-gooder’ organizations such as Fair Trade. The major point of the course was not just to discuss the obvious, but to dig deeper and see the immense complexity of the issues and the enormous consequences small actions can have. We were also encouraged to use our business skills to try and find answers.

We focused on finding efficient and sustainable solutions and on coming up with entrepreneurial ways of targeting the issues in order to really help people and the environment rather than accepting the current situation of the world. Common thought says that a single person cannot change the world. It is true concerning say water scarcity, but a single person can change the life of thousands. For instance, take the case of Muhammad Yunus with the microcredit system, where we observe that this solution can help and improve the world in the long run.


The Challenge of Taking Courses in a Foreign Language

After having lived in England for two years and having had lectures in English at EBS, it was not too hard for me to participate and understand the international lectures in Spain which were held in English. However, the lectures in Spanish were something different. Even though I have studied the language for a couple of years now, it is very different having to study in Spanish than to simply study Spanish. It takes a lot more concentration to focus in a different language, and it is very tiring. It especially takes much more time when writing essays. Lucky for me I was prepared before I arrived, as some other unlucky ERASMUS students at my university arrived without speaking a single word of Castellano.

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