Greetings from the beautiful Slovene Istria! Slovene Istria is a region in southwest of Slovenia that covers all the coastline to the Adriatic Sea. Though the coastline is teeny-tiny (only 47 kilometres!), we’ve got everything – historic cities, sea, vineyards, nature parks, beaches, Mediterranean food and let’s not forget the warmest weather in Slovenia!
My city Koper is almost next to the Italian border and that’s why everyone here knows how to speak Italian and actually, it is is easier to find Italian than Slovenian food here. I have also noticed that the closeness of Italy can also be seen in the relaxed atmosphere. The population rate of Koper is only 25,000, but we have an amazing group of nearly 80 Erasmus students here. Our local student organization is really active and taking incredibly good care of us. But it’s not only the student organization, but the Erasmus students themselves too. We spend a lot of time together and since the distances are really short to different parts of Slovenia and other countries too, we have been travelling quite a lot.
Since I am a public health nurse student and doing practical training here, I am going to tell you something about that. Firstly, everybody who sees my name tag and the title on it, start laughing or ask me to pronounce ‘terveydenhoitajaopiskelija’. I consider myself really lucky, that the language barrier has created more funny than frustrating situations like that. I already finished my first practice in Splošna bolnišnica Izola in an internal medicine ward. At first, there weren’t too many nurses that spoke in English, but in the last couple weeks I guess they started to feel more confident doing that. In the same ward was also two Slovenian students, that I made friends with, and they were helping me all the time. Now I’m doing my second and last practice in a health center. It just started, so I don’t have a lot to say, but the first impression was good. People are so nice here!
Instead of summing this post up, I’m going to tell you something funny about Slovenians. When we are trying to do something in the same pace in Finland, we usually count from one to three. What Slovenians do, they count “three, four, now!” instead. After hearing this, they told me that Slovenians are special, and they sure are!
Hi and greetings from Ljubljana! I’m currently doing my practical training as a nursing student here in the capital of Slovenia. My exchange time lasts three months and it is almost gone. I’m going to be back in Finland next week.
In these three months I’ve been practicing in many different places, both in primary healt care and special health care. Most of the time I’ve been in University Medical Centre Ljubljana. I’ve been in many different wards, e.g. operating theatre, surgical ward and hematology ward. Every place has been different and very interesting in their’s own way. I have seen many kind of things, learned a lot and got to practice my skills as nurse. Foreign language has brought challenges to my practice, it’s been difficult to communicate especially with older patients, who can’t speak English. My colleagues here are really nice and also very interested in Finnish health care system.
I’ve also been couple of days at university, where I attended skills lab class with local students.
The main building of University of Ljubljana
Slovenia is a beautiful country and local people are kind and polite. Nature here is variable, there are mountains and lakes, caves, coast and hills. Ljubljana is known of the river Ljubljanica, which flows through the city. This city is also a popular exchange destination, there are a lot of student from all over Europe studying here.
These three months have gone very quickly and I can warmly recommend exchange time for everyone. You get to see the world, meet new people and learn a lot new things and also about yourself.
I’m studying automation engineering at University of Maribor. Maribor is the second biggest city in Slovenia, but it isn’t very big. It’s even smaller than my home city Tampere in Finland, but like Tampere also Maribor is a very active student city. Today over 300 exchange students are studying at University of Maribor.
I came to Maribor 25th of September and the academic year in our University started on 1th of October. Truly I can say that I haven’t studied anything yet. It really takes time to get everything started! I have five courses, but only two courses are held in English. I’ve to make some individual studies in other courses which are held in Slovene. I’m the only exchange student in Industrial electronics course and I’ve to go make laboratory works with locals. I’ve also noticed that communicating with teachers is here little bit more formal than in Finland.
Erasmus student network (ESN) is very active in Maribor. Our student life in Maribor started with Welcome weeks. It means unstoppable fun in many events for the first two weeks in Maribor. I got some unforgettable memories, when we had a chance to attend Timber raft and Zorbing tournament. Of course we had parties every night somewhere in the city. Zorbing was as fun as you can imagine. It looks a bit unsafe but I think it’s safe. Over 100 students tried it and we did not suffer any accidents.
I’m living in a private flat with a German and a Polish flat mates. I’m sharing my room with the Polish guy. Both of my flat mates are studying business and economics, which is the biggest faculty here. And of course, I have to tell to you, that my flat mates are awesome. I’m very luckily that I can live in a private flat, which is in excellent location, very good condition and the rent is quite cheap.
I want to tell you something about Slovene student food system. It’s great and quite unique. Every month government gives 20 to 22 food coupons to each student. Food coupons can be used in most restaurants. It’s funny, because with these coupons, going to eat something in a good restaurant is cheaper than cooking at home. When you are using food coupons you will always receive a starter, a salad and a main dish and some restaurants also offer desserts.
The study exchange in Portoroz, Slovenia has started hotly. The place is great and beautiful, next to the sea.
If you are a fan of the summer you would definitely enjoy this place. When I left Finland it was approximately 10C, I am living summer all over again.
So far we haven’t had so many lectures, however the first week started straight away with a guest lecturer from the US. It has been inspiring and motivated to be surrounded by people who are motivated to study and by professionals who know what they are doing and are passionate about their fields and sharing their wisdom with us.
The language is very different compared to Finnish, however I did have a small laughter when I heard that juha, which in Finland is a very common name for a man, means soup in Slovenian. Now you will be able to order some soup in Slovenia.
The climate and surrounded ares are very different compared to my hometown. In the mornings when the sun is out and I am on my way to university I always have company by these little fellows, lizards.
This was probably the biggest shock I have had so far. If you are lucky you can meet these fellows on your way as well or pump into a rooster!