Written by Maria
BA (Hons) International Hospitality Management
The prospect of studying a semester abroad at a different university to your own, might seem like a small step for an international student, but it still represents a significant action nonetheless, regardless of where you come from. Going on an exchange programme is an opportunity not to be missed, and one you can gain immeasurable benefits from both personally and educationally.
What Is It?
To put it simply, the Erasmus+ Study Mobility Programme has been set up in order to give students from all over Europe the ability to study abroad for a short period of time. Through it, anyone can access additional funding that will help them with various expenses in their chosen country.
How Does It Work?
More often than not, students are able to study abroad in either the 1st or the 2nd semester of their second year of university, regardless if they’re undergraduates or postgraduates. In my case, it all started with a lecture at the end of my first term from the Principal Academic in Tourism and Hospitality, where she introduced us to this movement’s key concepts. BU has a generous list of partnered universities all around the world, offering a variety of courses suitable for each and every one of our students. You can choose up to 3 universities, the first one being at the top of your preferences. Each foreign institution has a separate link containing valuable information and details of various programmes regarding exchange students. Of course, you don’t have to go through this whole process on your own! The Global Mobility Hub in Poole House has drop-in sessions every Monday and Thursday from 1 to 5, where all members of the team are more than happy to answer any queries and guide you every step of the way.
The ’Study Abroad’ section on Bournemouth University’s website will direct you to the online application form that should be completed sometime in the middle of the first year. After entering your details, all you need to do is to upload your CV and write a short paragraph describing your reasons for selecting those particular courses. Once the form is submitted, the application will take around a month to be processed and, if everything goes well, BU will then nominate you to those said universities. If the first choice doesn’t have any places left, then the 2nd and 3rd alternatives will be your safety net.
Why Do It?
Not only will this opportunity make your CV stand out from the rest, but it will also allow you to broaden your horizons, having wonderful experiences, meeting various people from different cultures and travelling the world while having fun. I’m well aware of the fact that being on your own among strangers sounds scary, to say the least. From my experiences, however, all that may seem difficult at first turns out to be worthwhile in the end.