Interview with Vegard, a tourism placement Erasmus + student from Norway!

Hello Vegard, 

Thank you very much for accepting our invitation for a short interview.

We are pleased to know a bit more about your Erasmus + experience in Córdoba (Spain), as it will be for sure a motivational example for other young learners.

1.First of all, tell us some brief information about you. Where do you live and study/work at the moment, where are you from and how old are you?

My name is Vegard and I am 19 years old. I am from a beautiful city in Norway called Bergen. I have spent the last two years working in an upper secondary school as an apprentice in the subject of tourism.

2.What determined you to take part in an Erasmus + project to do an internship abroad?

I saw the Erasmus + project as an amazing chance for me to learn. I have always loved traveling abroad and seeing new places and learning more about them. Specially Spain has for me been a most intriguing country, so I wanted to spend some time there and learn more about the country as well as myself.

3.  Tell us about your training experience as a tourism student in Spain.

I was training with a local guide at the Cathedral of Cordoba. With him, I learned so much about the history of this building as well as the history of the city. Perhaps the most important lesson was to see how he interacted with the customers. As far as I could tell, not a single person seemed not to enjoy taking part in the guided tours. Having a lot of knowledge about a place is always a good thing, but being able to share it in a decent manner is just as important.

4. Did you face any challenges during your Erasmus placement? How did you overcome them?

When I woke up the first day in Spain, a lot of unknown emotions hit me. All of a sudden, I’m finding myself in a totally
different place, without anyone of my friends nor family there. I felt a bit worried about the whole thing in the beginning, since I have never done something like this before. After a couple of days, I calmed down a lot. When I started doing things and had met all the new people I was going to spend time with, I stopped worrying. My best tip is to quickly find your own routine.

5.  Do you think this experience has helped you professionally? 

Absolutely! Because of the job I have back home in Norway, I didn’t get to be so much «out in the field». I was mostly
working from my office, therefore it was a priceless experience for me to be together with a guide. I saw how he spoke with the customers and his co-workers, how he showed them around in the cathedral. I learned a lot from
him about customer relations.

6. According to you, what are the best things about doing an Erasmus placement abroad?

It’s difficult to point at a single thing and say «this was the best part», since I’ve got so many good memories. I will say that for myself, I really appreciated everything I learned about me. After living two months in Spain, I feel I returned home to Norway a better person, more confident, wiser, and happier. When you challenge yourself to do a trip like this, you get to meet yourself in a totally different way. This alone will open your eyes for ways to improve yourself which had never before struck your mind.

7. What would you advise to fellow students thinking about applying for an Erasmus

My advice would be:

If you consider going abroad for a few months, DO IT! It’s a priceless experience. The only thing you will regret is not going. The best part about the Erasmus + project is that it’s free. If the opportunity comes your way, don’t think twice, just do it.

Thank you very much for your time Vegard. It’s been very inspiring to talk to you!