For this week´s interview, we questioned a Ukrainian student Bohdan Kostenko who came from Vincent Pol University in Lublin, Poland. Bohdan is a physiotherapy student and when asked about his Erasmus experience, he is most grateful for having improved his English and making lots of new friends from all over the world.
Why did you choose our university for your Erasmus study experience?
I chose Palacký University Olomouc because it is located not far from my home University in Poland and it is one of the biggest universities in the Czech Republic. The culture and language is very similar for me. Also, not many universities offer English programmes for physiotherapists.
Were your expectations different from the reality?
My expectations were different from the reality. I really practised English so much, during the whole semester we had so many meetings, events called “National presentation’’, ‘’Language Café’’… it was great.
Can you compare your study experience in Olomouc with the experience from your home university?
Yes, I can compare my study experience in Olomouc with the experience from my home university. In Olomouc I practised English more, there were so many classes related to sports, different teaching methods… It was new for me. At my university I did not have the internet system ‘’STAG’’ to check my schedule and other useful information, but I think they should create something like this. There were so many international students from all over the world – at my home university, I do not normally meet them, only Ukrainian and Polish people. I think that is all.
What were some of the biggest challenges you had to overcome as an Erasmus student?
Biggest challenges? I do not think so! The teachers at the university were very kind and so were the international and Czech students. The Neředín dormitories were comfortable for me and located near the faculty. Olomouc is a small student city and I like it.
How did you spend your free time?
In my free time I went to the gym or walked to the city centre with my friends. I visited the Aqua Park in Olomouc, played laser tag game and saw other interesting places in the city. And of course, so much travelling! From Olomouc I travelled to Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Brno, Katowice… and all my travels were by bus or train, very cheap and fast (not longer than four hours). If you want to do Erasmus programme, you must travel!
What is the single most memorable experience you have from your Erasmus life?
The most memorable experience in my Erasmus life would be connected to my new friends from all over the world. I experienced a great deal of funny situations with them and it was the best experience for me.
Have you changed because of your Erasmus experience?
Yes. I became more friendly because I learned about many other cultures that I was not familiar with before.
How can this experience benefit your future career?
It can help me find a good job because the employer will realize that I am sociable, I know English at a good level and I have knowledge that is not yet available or not used in my country. And of course it can help me to open my own private practice.
Would you recommend the study at the Faculty of Physical Culture, Palacký University Olomouc to your friends? Why?
Yes, I will do it because it is a very good place to learn the language, to have good experiences, a place where you can meet a lot of new people and get to know their culture.
If you had to describe your Erasmus experience in Olomouc using 5 adjectives, which ones would you use?
I would use friendly, helpful, successful, lively, cheerful.