Marl, 9th September 2016. A group of 11 pupils of the Spanish partner school Colegio Urkide in the Basque capital Vitoria in Northern Spain were visitors at the grammar school Gymnasium im Loekamp (GiL) for a week. After the German pupils had already been to Spain in April, now the Spaniards got to know everyday life at the GiL and the special qualities of the region. On the first day Mayor Werner Arndt welcomed the guests and gave a survey over Marl and its history from the tower of the town hall. During a study trip through the Ruhr Area on Friday the Spaniards first got to know the significance of mining for the Ruhr Area in a visit to the Museum of Mining in Bochum. How industry left its mark on the Ruhr Area and how structural change can function was the topic of an interesting guided tour in the Gasometer in Oberhausen, the second stop of the tour through the Ruhr Area. The day found a conclusion with eating and shopping in the Centro Shopping Centre, an example of the successful change of former industrial areas.
Verona, 15th August 2016. In the summer holidays, Emma, pupil of a grammar school in Brakel, was allowed to do her work placement at the Goethe Institute in Verona (Italy). She did not have the think for long as she had already heard from other pupils how great it is to make such experiences. Flying to Italy without her parents was definitely an adventure and when she arrived at the host family’s she was relieved and happy. “All people were totally warm and friendly. I got to know the country and the people much better, simply because I was accommodated with a host family. And although I could not really talk with the parents because of the language barrier, you could always somehow communicate.”
With her work placement, however, she had no problems with the language because she was allowed to do her work placement at the Goethe Institute and everybody working there can speak German. In her report Emma describes what she liked most with her work placement: “I liked being directly included in the everyday life of the Institute and I could thereby observe the different roles most exactly. I was able to learn many things regarding leading and organizing lessons and I even learned a bit of Italian. Already after the first day I did no longer feel work as work because I enjoyed very much making so many new experiences. I got to know Italy from a completely different perspective and I am grateful for everything I was allowed to experience in this time.
All I can add: “If you ever have the chance to do a work placement abroad, do it because it is definitely worth it!”
Przemysl, 1st August 2016. For her three-week work placement abroad, Oliwia, pupil from Brakel, chose the peaceful place of Przemysl near the Ukrainian border, where she lived with a very warm and open family. She is more than contented with her work placement in the local hospital: “The nurses quickly briefed me in my duties and thus I felt well at once. By working with the children in the ward I could extraordinarily enrich my experiences in interacting with children.” The language was no obstacle for Oliwia because she was born in Poland and has an almost fluent command of the language. Of course sometimes she was lacking some words. “But then my host family or the nurses helped me quickly.” Generally, speaking the language as a “foreigner” is highly appreciated in Poland and you are almost inundated with compliments. Her conclusion: “I am grateful for my insights due to the scholarship. Therefore I would recommend a work placement abroad to everyone considering it, as it is really worth it.”
Marseille, 23rd July 2016. The flower shop „Les herbes folles“ in Marseille took Viola for a two-week work placement. In her report she writes that the work placement “has been a great experience for her and has given her an excellent insight into flower business and the working life of a florist”. She realized that this job is far less quiet but instead much more varied than she had previously imagined. During her work placement Viola learned a lot about flower care, important rules for the arrangement of wonderful bouquets of flowers, but also about calculation of prices und the professional purchase of fresh flowers on the central market. She could also linguistically profit a lot from her work placement in Marseille as she stresses in her work placement report written in French.