The partnership between Voronezh State University and the Catholic University of Leuven (Belgium) was started in 1995 when the universities implemented a joint European TEMPUS project on university management. In 2008 VSU and the Faculty of Arts of the Catholic University of Leuven signed the agreement on student exchange that has been been run successfully ever since.
A third year student of the Faculty of Romance and Germanic Philology Sergey Gnitiyev has just completed an exchange study internship at the Faculty of Arts of the Catholic University of Leuven.
'The University of Leuven has over 70 thousand students that make a third of the whole population of the town and 10% of students are representatives of various nationalities. On the first day of my internship the university administration organised Orientation Day during which the Rector of the Catholic University gave a welcoming speech and a great number of exchange students had a chance to meet each other, their teachers, local students and supervisors of the exchange programme.
During my internship at the Faculty of Arts I took lectures on Film and Literature and Myth and Symbolism and studied German, Italian and French. All the study materials I could find in the university library. This is one of the oldest libraries with the library collection of over a million of titles. The most noteworthy is the library reading hall decorated in the Baroque style. It has about 230 seats, public computers and wireless Internet connection.
The university has a lot of student organisations and most students are keen on joining them. With the help of the Buddy Programme – a special programme that helps new students – I had a chance to go on a few trips – for example, to the European Parliament in Brussels. There were a lot of theme parties that allowed students to know each other better. During one of them I treated everyone with pancakes and talked about Russian Maslenitsa festival.