Damián García is a fifth year Medicine student at University CEU Cardenal Herrera. From the first year of his degree, it was clear that he wanted to undertake some type of international mobility. Soon he started to become interested in the offer of an Erasmus scholarship and started to find out what he had to do to be able to go to another country as part of his studies. During the last four months at the Faculty of Medicine at Charles University, “that dream came true”. Here is what Damián himself tells us about it.
For me, it was about going to a country with a culture as different as possible to ours, one which is far from home and the people I know, but at the same time one which is well situated in order to be able to travel around Europe. The city of Plzen, in the Czech Republic, seemed to be the right place. And it was.
The Czech Republic is a rather small country in the centre of Europe, but it is full of history, things to do and places to see. During my Erasmus experience, not everything was about studying and medicine. I was able to visit the Czech Republic, its neighbouring countries (Poland, Germany, Austria and Slovakia), Lithuania and Hungary… the truth is that my friends and I basically didn’t stop being on the move.
“These months have been like a dream come true”
The thing is, it is difficult to show all that this experience has meant for me in just a few lines and three photos, but I will try…
If you want to go to the Czech Republic to study medicine, you should know that the teachers do speak English, but the patients and the nurses do not, so you may learn to do some anamnesis in Czech (and it’s not easy). It is also important to know that classes tend to be much more practical (I have practiced endoscopic techniques with a robot and laces at one of the university hospitals) and less theoretical than here.
For those who like sports, the leading sport in the Czech Republic is ice hockey. It’s a lot faster than football (maybe even more interesting from my point of view) and it’s more than affordable to attend matches. It is so popular that there is even an Interuniversity League which all students attend in order to encourage their teams.
Finally, I could not say goodbye without showing you a picture of the cathedral, situated in the middle of the town square – and here we are, my group of friends. Without them nothing would have been the same.
They will tell you all that you are going off on an Erasmus experience, which is going to be the best experience of your life, and I know that sometimes you even get tired of hearing it … But after having experienced it for myself, I cannot help but give the same advice. These months have been like a dream come true and if I could repeat this experience again, I would not hesitate for a second.