Juliane from Portugal shares her Erasmus+ experience
Juliane, a student from Portugal, decided to choose SMK in Vilnius, Lithuania for her Erasmus+ studies in spring 2019. Her experience turned out to be extremely useful in finding an internship in Belgium and progressing with her career. SMK interviewed Juliane about her Erasmus+ experience.
Juliane, how did you decide to apply for an Erasmus+ internship at the SMK in Lithuania?
Living in another country for a while was always one of my biggest dreams! When I made up my mind to apply for the Erasmus+ programme, my wish was to study further away from home (Portugal) and get a chance to experience a different culture! I had always wanted to visit the Baltic countries, so this was the best time to do it!
How did this experience help you in your future career?
Erasmus+ studies have made me a more open and confident person and taught me to take on new adventures and grab the best opportunities. I also learned a lot about myself. Today I am a volunteer at ESN Porto and got a job through the Erasmus+ internship! I’d like to mention that in all the job interviews I went to before, I was asked about my international experience and it was super useful to mention my studies in Lithuania.
What were the most surprising things you learned about the Lithuanian culture and way of life while living here?
Without any doubt, it was meal times! In Portugal we have specific times dedicated to lunch, dinner, etc. while in Lithuania one can eat whenever he/she is hungry, so we were even having classes at our usual dinner time. I also found it super interesting how Lithuanians celebrate their Independence Day, it was such an unforgettable experience!
What would you advise other young people who are considering applying for studies at SMK University of Applied Social Sciences?
Be brave, be open, and do not hesitate to come to SMK, it is amazing here! You will meet people from all over the world, who will become your friends for life. Vilnius is an incredible city to explore, there is always something new to discover here. Being an Erasmus student, you may travel to other neighboring countries. It is a very enriching experience.
How is SMK different from other educational institutions?
I learned a lot not only professionally but personally too! All the people who work here are super helpful and go beyond your expectations to provide you with the best experience not only at the study level but also to assist in coping with everyday issues.
Was it easy to adjust to the Lithuanian culture and way of life here?
As I came from Portugal, the biggest difference was undoubtedly the food, weather, and language! I adapted very well, I fell in love with the snowy winter and those mornings, when everything outdoors is white! Up until today, I miss those enchanted mornings and Lithuanian garlic bread!
Thank you, Juliane, for sharing your story with the SMK community.
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