Lecturer Ivo Fuit went to Polen to give classes: "With almost 1 out of 4 habitants being a student, Krakow (pronounced in Polish as Krakov) can be called a student’s city. Besides student exchange programmes, Tio also offers lecturers the possibility to lecture at partners schools, so when I was asked to provide some Cross Culture Communications classes at the University of Economics of Krakow (UEK) I immediately said yes. Who wouldn't say yes to an opportunity like this?"
The classes took place during the first International Week of UEK. In this week several lecturers from all over Europe gave classes to the UEK students. For the lecturers the international week officially started with a kick off meeting with a formal welcome from Rector professor Andrzej Chockhol. This meeting was in the museum chamber of the main building and was followed by a typical Polish lunch. Indeed a start in style!
The UEK is established 5 minutes from the central train station in Krakow in a campus setting. Besides the old building, which breads a nostalgic atmosphere, there also some modern buildings on the campus. The campus on its own had, for me, a rustic radiation. Although the university has 20,000 students, the roads and buildings inside the campus did not feel crowded.
With my qualitative research background I automatically look at artefacts within and around an organization. Artefacts, which easily caught my eye also because of the difference with Tio, were a lot of papers such as student grades and schedules on the walls. The class rooms are equipped with beamers and the possibility to connect your laptop to the network / internet but in the same rooms there are also blackboards and overhead projectors. When was the last time you saw a blackboard and markers?
We Dutch are definitively connected with orange. My orange Tio business card was preferred over the green one by students, staff and international colleagues, so future visitors bring enough orange cards.
Krakow is a really nice town with lots of possibilities. Also within a one hour drive from Krakow center you can visit a former salt mine Wieliczka and the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau. Both are half day trips and of course they are of a totally different order; either are well worth visiting.
Most students who attended my classes were Polish but I had also several Ukrainian students. Besides the students’ high level of English, other communication skills were also well developed. This was easy as I prefer to have interactive classes.
At the end of the final class when we were discussing my time in Krakow and what I drank, ate and visited I heard “You are more Polish than we are” from one of the students. Good to hear and a perfect closure of my classes. As you can imagine, I warmly recommend an exchange possibility – student or lecturer - to the University of Economics of Krakow. Please contact me if you would like more information.
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