With tapas, siesta & flamenco: semester abroad in Madrid
For travelers, Madrid is synonymous with good food, lively culture and relaxed coexistence. This is not the only reason why it is such a popular destination for many ISM students during their semester abroad. Carl Timmerbeil also spent four months in the Spanish capital. „First and foremost, I wanted to improve my Spanish language skills," he explains. The city itself was completely unknown to Carl Timmerbeil at the beginning of his journey. But he had already heard a lot about his university. "The UC3M enjoys a very good reputation among ISM students. I didn't know at the beginning that it was one of the most renowned universities in Spain".
With a good portion of anticipation in his luggage, the student started his semester abroad at B.A. International Management in mid-January. Just like at the ISM, learning takes place at the partner university in small lecture and practice groups, so that the 22-year-old could quickly establish contact with lecturers and other students. The biggest difference between the Spanish and the German mentality was also obvious at the university. "Stress and hectic are hardly ever present in Spain. Nevertheless, it is of course expected that you do your job properly and on time."
Away from the lectures, the city of 3.1 million inhabitants was still waiting to be discovered - and Carl Timmerbeil was keen on it: "Spanish culture is a dream for leisure time. It feels like there are more than 1,000 bars and you get the obligatory tapas with every beer." The attitude of the Madrileneans to eating and drinking has remained in his memory. While Sunday is spent in Germany gladly with coffee and cake on the couch, one meets there in the afternoon in bars or for making music and painting at public places.
Carl returned from Spain with many impressions. His Mexican roommate is especially memorable. Despite or even because of the nine years difference in age and the fundamentally different circumstances from which both come, the student from Cologne has been able to expand his wealth of experience. "The stories he told me about his youth and his studies in Mexico will probably continue to shape me and have made it clear to me that our social and economic problems in Germany are pure luxury concerns. He doesn't want to miss his time in Madrid and still has good advice for all students who also want to study in Spain. "The most important thing is to talk loud! Otherwise you'll go down in the - by German standards - screaming and wait forever until you can order your coffee."
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