Tuesday, September 25, 2012

First steps at UGent

During the Welcome Days (September 21-22), we were about 850 incoming exchange students to gather in a big amphitheater, to receive general information about Ghent, the university facilities, the housing services, the student organizations, and so on... We all got a free lunch! I guess it was worth to attend then. We received a lot of paperworks to deal with in the upcoming days, some documents to send back to our home university and all this kinda annoying things which takes so much time!

As I said earlier, I got my student room in one of the 10 university halls of residence (Canterburry). For 31.200 students at UGent only (with 2600 international students), there is only 700 rooms available for foreign students. That makes it hard to get an accommodation for Erasmus students! At first I liked the room: not too small, quite recent and well-arranged with a small fridge. Unfortunately the rest isn't so great: it was pretty dusty; I didn't have warm water to shower; there is no oven, no pans or pots, no plates or cutlery in the kitchen; the laundry is expensive and there isn't much wash-machines for all the rooms. All of that for 391€/month! That's why I'm looking for something else from November 1st, but the university housing department doesn't want to cancel my contract for shorter than 3 months!

About my courses, a few of them already start this week. Unfortunately, I will have to make some changes in the courses chosen in my Learning Agreement. Actually, one class has an entrance test requiring an advanced level in statistics and using SPSS, which I never studied before so I better take another class! I'll make a separate post about that when I know more about it I guess.

Otherwise, I also registered for a Dutch course every Monday evening! As exchange student at UGent, I received a voucher (value: 169€) to take this class at the University Language Center (UCT), reducing the fee to 50€: for books and administrative costs. This class is 3 hours per week and gives 4 additional ECTS credits.

With studentENmobiliteit, I should get a bike for 30€ when I rent it for 6 months, repairs and 2 locks included. I think it's necessary to go downtown or groceries without wasting too much time walking up and down the hills! I just hope it doesn't rain that much (sigh).

That's all for now. Laters!

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