24 Foreign Students Begin their Studies at Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences

24 foreign students from 12 countries - France, Spain, Turkey, the Netherlands, Slovakia as part of the Erasmus+ programme, as well as from the higher education institutions in partner countries Kazakhstan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, Kyrgyzstan, Albania - will start the new study year at Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences (ViA) together with the new and existing students.

Foreign students who study in different study programmes at Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences will mostly stay for one study semester. During this time they will not only study the chosen courses, but also the Latvian language and culture. During the introductory week, from August 29 to September 1, the students met with the Rector of the Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences, study field directors and the deans; they were introduced with the opportunities offered by ViA by meeting the Student Union of Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences, as well as visited the premises of the university, the library and attended the first introductory lectures to get better acquainted with the university environment. In parallel with the introductory activities, the students together with their mentors participated in various informal get-together events, including an international snack evening, where everyone presented their country's traditional dishes and drinks.

Fatjona Ndreca arrived from the University of Shkodër "Luigj Gurakuqi" in Albania and admitted that Valmiera and the university impressed her with an environmentally friendly lifestyle, many spots of nature and very friendly people.

Melvin Groenhof from Breda University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands, reveals: "I chose Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences for several reasons. First of all, I have travelled a lot, but I haven’t had an opportunity to be in one of the Eastern European countries, so this was an opportunity to finally see the Baltic States and maybe go to Russia. Second, I didn’t want to go to a big city, so Valmiera was a very good alternative. And third, but not least, is the content of the studies that I find very interesting - Chinese, dark tourism, public speaking etc. My first impressions are really positive. Valmiera offers various activities and people are warm and nice, it seems to me that Latvians have an interesting way of laughing, but when they do it, it is from the heart.”