Hyerim stayed in Esslingen from September 2022 to February 2023. She took courses from Computer Sciences during her semester at Esslingen University.
My stay abroad in five words:
Nice experience, Traveling, Making friends, Self-Development, Broaden mind
Deciding for Germany and Esslingen:
First, I heard Germany is safe comparing to other European countries and many Germans can speak English. Second, I heard many Koreans go to Germany as exchange students, so I could get a lot of information from Korean people who went to Germany as exchange students on the Internet.Third, Germany is located in the middle of Europe. So, it seemed like a good place to travel around Europe. Fourth, the reason that I chose Esslingen in Germany is the nature and countryside. Because I like feeling silence and relaxing. So that’s why I choose Esslingen.
Studying in Germany:
At Esslingen University, I learned Java programming and did a project to make a web service. Studying in Germany is more free compared to Korea. Because I think classes in Germany are not strict for attendance check. But most of the Korean classes are strict for that. And the German way of teaching has higher student participation even in the field of Computer Science. Because I felt there are many team project classes in Germany compared to Korea. And, students can participate themselves during class not only the professor.
My biggest worries and what I was looking forward to:
For me, Europe was the first time to visit, and it was the first time for me staying abroad for a long time. So, I was a bit scared of Europe about communication, pickpocket, and so on. But in most of the places, I could communicate with English so communication was not a big problem. But sometimes I had to use a translator and it was little bit hard for visiting hospital. And I was always careful about pickpockets or stealing something. So that didn’t occur to me.I looked forward to learning German and speak German fluently with German people. But it didn’t happen to me. I would have to learn and use German more frequently. I learned German alphabet and some greeting words. But it is still difficult to pronounce roughly (ch, r,…).
My most beautiful experiences in Germany:
Traveling around Europe was the most beautiful experience I had. Staying in Esslingen was a good chance for that. I travelled to Prague, Switzerland, Croatia, Ireland, Spain, Austria, Finland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Turkey, Slovenia,… I also visited Mannheim, Munich, Frankfurt and Stuttgart in Germany.And I could cook, eat, and talk together with friends who lived in the same dormitory. That was a nice experience. Also, sky and weather were the best. I loved the clean sky in Europe.
If I could have asked the German students I met to do one thing for me, that would have been:
Can you phone call with the hospital instead of me (or some organization which can speak only German)?Some organizations can only speak German, so I was not able to phone call with them very well. So almost every time, I visited them directly and used a translator to talk with them.
What I also like to say (to future incoming students at Esslingen University):
I enjoyed my whole life in Esslingen very well. It was like a dream. But if I would have been able to speak German, it would have been more perfect.