Steyr, Austria - Poonam B.

Name: Poonam B.
Age: 21
Home town: Abbotsford, BC
Diploma program before the BBA: Human Resource Management
Exchange Partner: Upper Austria University of Applied Sciences
Duration: 1 Semester (Winter), 2010

What is a typical school day like?
I usually have two classes per day. After school, I relax and hang out with my roommates for a bit, go to the gym, and visit other friends in the city. In the evenings, I do some homework or have meetings for group projects, have dinner, and hang out with friends.

What is the campus like?
It is a beautiful, small campus located right next to the river

What did you do to have fun?
Living in a small town was great. We would walk to each other’s houses to hang out or cook dinner together. All the exchange students and Austrians would get together at the pub for a few drinks, play pool, go bowling, watch movies at the cinema,  or go to concerts. We also went snowboarding and ice skating. We did a lot of traveling within Austria and surrounding countries.

Why would you recommend exchange to others?
It is an amazing opportunity to meet people from around the world and learn about other cultures. I built a lot of close friendships. I have about 10 different countries which I can visit and meet my friends in again. It is an experience like no other - living in Austria for six months made me love the country, the food, the people, and their traditions.

What is your favorite memory or story involving your exchange?
We had an unforgettable road trip to Barcelona during the Christmas break. There were 13 of us international students, so we took two vehicles on a 10 day trip. During this 10 day trip, we managed to visit nine countries! We started off in Austria, drove through Germany, Switzerland, France, Spain, Andorra, Monaco, Italy, and Liechtenstein. My favorite city was Barcelona. The weather was amazing and we had an awesome time celebrating New Year's Eve there!

What one tip would you give to students preparing for exchange?
Make sure you travel (especially in Austria because it's located in the heart of Europe) and don’t pack a lot. You will want to bring back a lot of souvenirs, which will not fit in your suitcase!