What does studying in the Netherlands look like for an international student? Richard Tiel is in the Tourism Management programme at NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences. Below, he describes his typical school day.
Richard wakes up an hour before classes — around 9:00. He hops in the shower and has a quick breakfast. By 9:45 he is already riding his bicycle to school, just a short 5 minutes away. He usually even has time for a cup of coffee with classmates before classes begin!
Spanish is Richard’s first class today. It is taught by a nice Spanish professor who is always ready to help. Richard and his classmates are learning different forms of Spanish verbs in class today and they have to pass a listening test. Hola, español!
Here is some advice from Richard when it comes to language classes: “What’s very important in this course, is that you attend every class — despite the huge temptation of skipping one every now and then — because otherwise you will have trouble keeping up.”
The next class is English, but Richard hasn’t done his homework yet. Luckily for him, he has a spare hour after Spanish and is free between 11:00 and 12:00. Together with a fellow student from Romania, Richard does his homework and makes a run to the supermarket to get some snacks.
He then attends the English class with his regular group which includes students from different countries: the Netherlands, Germany, Romania, Bulgaria, and Greece. The course is taught by a lecturer from Ireland who is about 50 years old and has worked at NHTV for over ten years now. Today’s topics are Business vocabulary and some grammar.
“What’s so great about the international study programme, is that you are actually forced to speak English, which works wonders for your language level, as a result of which you speak fluent English as early as after a few months.” — Richards says.
Marketing in Tourism
Right after English, Richard has a marketing lecture. It takes place in a large lecture hall that can fit several groups of students at once. And that’s a disadvantage because it is more difficult to concentrate on the topic or ask a question with so many students around. On the other hand, lectures provide a lot of information useful for classes and projects. Another benefit is that students can attend them again if they need to. Today’s lecture discusses advertising methods and how to apply them to the Tourism industry.
Marketing project for a new hotel
After the lecture ends, it is time for an hour of project work. Richard’s group is creating a marketing plan for a new hotel in Vlissingen. They compete with other groups and the best project will actually be implemented at the hotel. This is why projects are the most fun part of studying; students get to make things that will be put into practice! Today, they must decide how to progress with their project.
Students spend 10 hours a week on projects. According to Richard, project work “takes up a lot of time outside regular class hours, but is the most interesting curriculum component of this period”.
Barbeque in the park
Richard and his fellow classmates have made some decisions about their project. It is 15:00 and it’s time to go home. It’s a beautiful day outside so Richard decides to relax with friends in Valkenbergpark. Looks like they weren’t the only ones with this idea — the park is very crowded! They buy a barbeque pack and spend the evening enjoying their food and talking about nothing and everything.
“In the evening there was a party in Walkabout café, but I decided not to go there because the next school day would start at 9:00 hrs in the morning.” — Richard concludes.
And so, a typical day in the life of an international student at NHTV Breda ends.
To find more information about the International Tourism Management Bachelor’s programme, please visit the NHTV Breda University website.