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Students share academic mobility experiences

Benefits and challenges of destinations in Latin America, Europe and Asia discussed at Speak Out

03/09/2018 - 10h28
Photos: Camila Cunha

Photos: Camila Cunha

Doing a mobility program overseas is one of the most enriching experiences a student can have. Learning a second language, meeting people from different cultures and learning more about oneself are just some of the advantages mentioned by students who joined Speak Out: Experiências Internacionais on Aug 27 and 28. Anyone who is interested in doing an academic mobility program had the chance to hear from former Academic Mobility students about the knowledge gained overseas.

The first day featured the accounts of students who went to Latin America and former Santander Universidades grantees. The second day was devoted to students who went to Europe and Asia as they could share some advantages and challenges of the experience.

Open mind

Stefania Rosa studied at Universidad Católica de Chile

Stefania Rosa studied at Universidad Católica de Chile

History major Stefania Dalla Rosa, and Journalism major Roger Paz, agree Chile was the right choice. Not only did they brushed up their Spanish and English but had contact with different cultures at the Universidad Católica de Chile and at Universidad Mayor do Chile, respectively. Alex Blasi, Public Relations major, who went to Universidad Veracruzana (Mexico), believes this program was essential for him to know more about himself and build a better sense of belonging to Latin America.

Law School student Alice Martins Costa Keller da Silveira chose Pontifícia Universidad Católica de Argentina and spoke to her peers about the prejudice in choosing Latin American countries as she stated that these countries are home to people from different parts of the world. “I learned that Argentina is the center of the world. I met people from different countries and, most importantly, who viewed Latin America as the nicest place to be”, added she.

Leonardo Giacomin went to Uppsala University

Leonardo Giacomin went to Uppsala University

On the other hand, Leonardo Vinícius Giacomin, who went to Uppsala University (Sweden), claims that the biggest difficulty was the weather. As temperatures in that country are lower and days are shorter, he stressed the importance of traveling with an open mind to explore the unexplored. Giacomin, who is an Economy major, also said that it is very important to be financially prepared to go on an exchange overseas.

Students embarking upon an academic mobility program will be exempt from paying tuition at the host institution but must be regularly enrolled at PUCRS during the program. They must bear the housing, food and transportation costs.

Beyond the obvious

Maria Eduarda Levy de Mello and Rodrigo Heinzen Esteves represented Asia as they shared their experiences at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (South Korea) and at Sophia University (Japan). The Journalism major claimed that living abroad was a privilege. “An unusual country can give you many opportunities to learn. This is the moment to go beyond the obvious”, said she.

Rodrigo Esteves spent a year at Sophia University

Rodrigo Esteves spent a year at Sophia University

Esteves, who spent a year in Tokyo working on his major in Computer Science, also highlighted the benefits of choosing a country whose culture is different from ours. “The city is stunning, transportation is efficient and so it the way the Japanese preserve their history”, completed he.

At both universities, classes are taught in English and the number of international students is impressive. Esteves and Mello also stated that is possible to communicate effectively even without speaking Japanese or Korean.

PUCRS constantly sends a number of students to partner institutions and opens its doors to international students interested in coming to Porto Alegre. For further information about incoming and outgoing mobility, please click here or send an email to mobilidade.in@pucrs.br.