Unforgettable Trip to France

Five NMSTU students from the Institute of Metallurgy, Mechanical Engineering and Materials Processing and the Institute of Power Engineering and Automation Systems spent the whole of the last semester at the Jean Monnet University in Saint-Etienne, France as part of the Erasmus+ Academic Mobility Programme.

Bogdan Balashov was one of them. He told us about his time in France.

The French system of assessment is based on 20 grades rather than 5. What is interesting is that the highest grades are almost unachievable, even for French students.

Bogdan really appreciated the fact that in France students and teachers treat each other almost as equals. He was also impressed with the project defence procedure. When Bogdan was working on his term paper, he found himself a member of the team of 6 who were challenged to design a robot. Also, when they assess your project, they don’t go by such criteria as “good” or “poor” but they rather try and identify each project’s signature.

Bogdan confesses that the only real challenge for him was finding himself in a foreign environment where everybody would speak French.

Bogdan says they didn’t really have much spare time as they studied from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

But when he would happen to have some free time he would try and make most of it. He still remembers the day when he and his French friends were climbing Mont Blanc.

He also spent five days in Paris after the study period was over.

Speaking about his plans for the future, Bogdan says that he is yet to defend his graduation paper in French over Skype. If he is successful, he will be awarded another diploma - BAC+2 degree, which will allow him to enter an engineering school or a university or even apply for a job in France. Bogdan is very thankful to NMSTU for this opportunity.

The only piece of advice Bogdan would give to other students is to make a point of learning foreign languages. He himself is thinking about taking up a third foreign language. The reason for it is that the world is moving towards globalization and international communication skills appear to be the key to everything.

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