Aziza Madani from Dubai is a third year student in the International Business Bachelor’s programme at Zuyd University of Applied Sciences. Below, Aziza explains why she chose to study in the Netherlands and shares her experiences with prospective students looking for a university abroad.
Choosing a country to study in
Aziza explains that choosing the Netherlands as a study destination was a coincidence. She says that her father owns a company in her home country and, as the oldest child in her family, she is interested to join the business. In order to do it, however, she needs a degree in international business. When she started to seek such a programme at home, she found that the majority of local programmes are not international enough. This made her pay attention to universities in other countries. At that time, Aziza’s uncle was working at the Qatar Embassy in the Netherlands and he recommended this country as a study destination because of its reputation of having high-quality programmes and an international environment.
“My first choice was Maastricht University, but my application there was unsuccessful. Now, however, I have no regrets at all.” — Aziza says.
Applying knowledge to practice
Aziza considers the practical approach to teaching as the most attractive aspect of studying at Zuyd. Recently, one of her assignments consisted of creating a business plan for an imaginary company and then another one for the paper producing company, Sappi. She and her classmates also attended a three-day student contest in Leuven, Belgium. Every day, they had 3 hours to find a solution for a business case and to prepare a presentation for a jury. Aziza likes that the knowledge students receive at Zuyd can instantly be applied to practice.
Aziza finds studying at Zuyd as a really international experience. She is going to study in the UK as an exchange student next year. After that, she will have a five-month internship abroad. She will have to find a company to intern with herself and she hasn’t decided yet where she wants to go — but it could be anywhere in the world!
Speaking English, learning Dutch
Aziza says that she was quite nervous when she got to Maastricht in September of 2014. She thought that communication with locals would be a problems as she didn’t know Dutch. Later she found, though, that nearly everyone in the Netherlands speaks English, even her neighbours and people in shops.
“My dad thinks that’s a pity. ‘If people only spoke Dutch to you, you could learn the language in no time,’ he said. I am now learning Dutch as my second language, together with my fellow international students.” — she concludes.
Studying International Business in Maastricht
Zuyd University of Applied Sciences is located in the south of the Netherlands (zuyd means south in Dutch) and hosts around 15,000 students from 40 different nationalities. It offers Bachelor’s and Master’s programmes taught in English in the city of Maastricht.
Zuyd was rated 4th nationally among medium-sized vocational universities in the 2015 Keuzegids HBO ranking.
The International Business Bachelor’s programme is offered every year, beginning in September, and takes 4 years to complete. There is also a fast-track option, which lasts just 3 years, for advanced students wishing to take the programme.
Find more information about the International Business programme on the Zuyd University website.