SOPHIA WOLF, GERMANY
Following her involvement with the European Youth Parliament, Sophia Wolf was keen to develop a better understanding of the dynamics of non-partisan politics, with a view to someday being part of the process. She chose EPA.
“The EPA bachelor programme is unique because of its balance of subjects. Most traditional curricula are quite limited in their choice of courses, but in this programme you get to deal with many aspects of policy making.”
The course on 'Regional Innovation' was a great learning experience for Sophia and her project group, she says. “For the assignment, we had to analyse a region and describe how the European Union's policies have impacted it. We decided to focus on the Twente region. We interviewed municipal representatives, the Innovation Platform group and Euregio, a regional cooperation platform supported by the EU. We saw how the EU's policies translate, in practice, into observable change in our surroundings. The fact that the UT often encourages bridging the gap between the university and the surrounding communities was quite essential to the success of the project.”
STUDYING IN THE NETHERLANDS
Key differences between studying in Germany and in the Netherlands, according to Sophia, are communication and social life. “Students in flats here do a lot more together. Expect to be eating together and relaxing with your flatmates afterwards. Professors and staff also communicate a lot more, and on the same level, so classes are more interactive.”
The campus, says Sophia, is one of the best things about the UT. “It is not just the social factor and the fact that you’re always running into people you know on campus, it’s also the fact that the campus offers facilities for almost every leisure activity you can think of. As a ‘student city’, Enschede is really nice, too. In summer, there are many music festivals – check out Gogbot, Freshtival and Green Vibrations – and at the ‘Old Market’ square there’s always a restaurant, café or bar open where you can meet friends.”