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ES students in Budapest

European Studies in Budapest: Education and experience

Last November '14 a group of European Studies students together with two lecturers travelled to Budapest. Aim of the visit was to learn more in practice about an Eastern European country, in this case Hungary. The educational trip was a marvelous and exciting encounter for the 4th year students, who had completed the course on Central and Eastern Europe. In this course the students had already learned about politics, economy and culture of countries such as Russia, Moldova, Georgia, Poland and Ukraine as well as the differences and similarities between these countries and Western Europe.

The educational excursion was a week with a busy program during which the students gained a lot of insight and experience. Just some examples: firstly, the students and teachers paid a visit to our partner university International Business School (IBS) Budapest. Also the Dutch Embassy as well as of course the Dutch Chamber of Commerce were not missed as part of the program. In addition, the Hungarian Parliament was very worthwhile to visit.

On the last day the students conducted field research by way of interviews. In doing so, they had the opportunity to focus more on daily life and get into contact with the local Hungarian population. Questions asked were for instance: what are you most proud of as an Hungarian? What is Hungary most famous for? What do you think: does Hungary has a more positive or negative stance in Europe/the world? It was fun to come into contact with the local people: interesting discussions and at times quite surprising answers.

Of course, some time was reserved for relaxation during our visit. We had the privilege to visit one of the most beautiful bathhouses in Budapest. This truly was a wonderful experience. A city tour took us along the many highlights of the city such as the magical fisherman’s bastion, Heroes Square, the extraordinary chain bridge, and the Vaudahunya castle. And as for culinary knowledge: we experienced this at first hand by tasting the many diverse and delicious Hungarian dishes.

All in all, this visit was really the “cherry on the cake” following the prior fascinating and motivating course on Central and Eastern Europe.

Vivian Garos

Student European Studies

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