I'm here at Universidad Pablo de Olavide in Spain as part of my Erasmus staff exchange. The reason for me being here right now, is that TAMK is coordinating an Erasmus IP ”Creative Methods in Social Work – CREME” and my job is to answer the endless questions of the participants concerning the administration, financing and practicalities of the course.
UPO is approximately the same size as TAMK, but the vibe is totally different on campus. They have a big unified campus with lots of beautiful parks and gardens for the students to meet and work in. Weather is bit tricky this time of year - Monday was freezing cold and Tuesday was melting hot - so layers, layers, layers!! UPO has some great services for our students (for example, their new tandem-tutor model), so I would recommend it for students... but they should have Spanish skills to maximise their experience. Services run quite smoothly in English but the amount of classes in English is still a bit limited.
The course has been wonderful and the students very motivated and committed, enthusiastic and outgoing. The groups work perfectly and I have just heard some of their reports, which were truly impressive! They will later on be published in a booklet and you should be able to get your hands on a copy in early autumn. If I have to find something negative, it is really killing a bureaucrat like me when everything (programme, budget, facilities...) changes every four hours. Even in my last course in Mozambique changes were no more frequent than once-a-day. Oh well!
Well, anyway, it's time to go scare everyone with the consequences of not following the rules. It's what I do best!
Text & Photo:
TAMK International Services