Eurodesk Alumni Stories: Ola Buczek

Growing up in a Polish household in Ireland, I have always had a great appreciation for different cultures and traditions and developed a passion for learning about other cultures. I planned to take on a Student Exchange to Spain in Transition Year so I could make the most of the year. I studied French at school, but I’d always loved the Spanish language and had been learning it in my own time through Duolingo and watching Spanish programmes and films on Netflix.

Before the Student Exchange, I did a lot of research and came across Eurodesk, which pointed me in the right direction for useful information and contacts. Through Eurodesk, I found a host family in Logrono in Spain.

I was nervous on my first day at school in Spain, but my classmates made me feel very welcome and the teachers were really supportive. My ‘host sisters’ attended the music conservatory in Logrono and I spent a lot of my free time there meeting new people and attended music classes.

I learned a lot about myself during my year in Spain, experiencing a different everyday environment and meeting so many new people. I became a much more open-minded person with a broader view of the world. It helped me to understand myself and the others around me.

It’s such a valuable experience, I would recommend it to anyone. There isn’t one thing I’d change about my experience and even two years later I am still in close contact with the friends I made in Logrono and now that the travel restrictions have lifted, I can’t wait to go back and visit my host family again!

Ola Buczek, 18

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