Third Year Part II – International Study in Fontys University Venlo, Limburg, Netherlands.
After a challenging work placement in France, I was both excited and apprehensive to begin the International Study part of Year 3. I chose to study International Fresh Business Management in Fontys University Venlo, located in the Netherlands. This sounded like a great option for me, as I wanted something more theory based rather than kitchen focused.
For this blog, I am going to go through the basics about moving to Venlo and a little bit about life since I’ve gotten here.
You may not have heard of Venlo before, and I hadn’t either before this opportunity arose. I didn’t quite know what to expect but I’m pleasantly surprised. Venlo is a city of 100,000+ people just 5 minutes away from the German border. It’s quite small and everything is within relative walking distance, but there’s lots of facilities and has a huge student population due to its 2 university campuses. To get to Venlo, we flew from Dublin to Eindhoven and got a train from there to the centre of Venlo. It was very straightforward and the whole travel journey was inexpensive.
Because we are exchange students, we had the option to stay in student dorms offered by the college. I am staying in Carpe Diem dormitory, which is a 15 minute walk or 6 minute cycle to the Fontys campus. For €365/month I have my own room in an apartment shared with 3 others. There’s a shower room, bathroom and equipped kitchen to share in every apartment. Heating, wifi, and all other bills are included. It’s very reasonably priced and it’s a pretty modern and clean space. Carpe Diem is home to all international students so it’s a very social place to live which is a great opportunity to meet new friends. The cost of living in the Netherlands is cheap, with food and drink being very affordable.
Though I won’t fully expand on college experience until a future blog, so far it has been a positive experience. The campus is modern and not too big. The introduction day for exchange students saw us being brought to play bowling and laser tag which was a nice touch. Everyone has been very helpful and supportive. The modules offered are unlike anything we have ever studied in WIT, so this will be a great opportunity to have a unique edge on our knowledge.
The Social Scene
One thing worth mentioning is the ‘Buddy Programme’ offered through our university. Every exchange student is assigned a Buddy, who is an experienced student who helps you find your way in Venlo. This has proved to be of great importance for the 4 of us who moved here together. Two of our buddies have been nothing but wonderful, and we formed a huge group of friends instantly. It’s amazing to meet so many people from such varied cultures. There’s never an opportunity to be bored here as we always have something arranged, be it a movie night, day trip, dinner date or endless parties to go to. Never a dull moment!
So, that brings me to the end of my first Dutch blog. It’s been a great experience so far, and I look forward to properly getting into the actual study aspect too!
Tot de volgende keer,