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Exchange student in Amsterdam

Tony Wong (20) is currently in his third year studying tourism and hospitality at Providence University in Taichung Taiwan. He is currently following the Hotel and Event Management course, as it relates to his studies back home. Let’s see how he is enjoying Amsterdam and Tio!

What are the differences between the classes at your own university and the classes at Tio?

Compared to Providence University it’s totally different. At Providence, we have 13 thousand students and 30 hectare campus. The number of students in class is different as well. I love Tio having small classes with 8 to 12 students and every teacher knowing who you are. This way your opinions and voices are to be heard easily. Even if you’ve got different ideas than others, everyone is willing to hear about it and discuss. At providence, I always have 60-70 students in one class. Some teachers don’t even know who you are.

Can you tell something about your experiences with fellow-students?

In my first semester the exchange students were like a big family. But during the Hotel and Event Week at the end of the last semester, I met a lot of Dutch students. It’s awesome. They are so much fun and very friendly. They are happy sharing different cultures and they know Taiwanese culture from me as well. It’s certainly worth to stay here for one year.’

Do you have contact(s) with people from your country?

We were with five exchange students from Providence last semester. Unfortunately, three of them already went back. So now it’s only Jolin and me who are still at Tio. We’re like sister and brother, sharing everything and cooking Taiwanese food together. It’s great to have someone from my ow nationality around as she lives just next door from me.

How is your stay in Amsterdam?

The first few weeks were quite hard. But I’m used to it now. The location is good. School is just about half an hour by bike. And there are two great parks just around the corner, Vondelpark and Rembrandtpark. I love to ride my bike through there if it is not cold. The parks in Amsterdam are pretty impressive: wide and well organized. Super relaxed. But renting an apartment in Amsterdam is expensive.

What do you miss most?

I’m missing foods, friends, family, that’s for sure. But that’s what being an exchange student is also about. It’s good to become independent this way.

Would you recommend an exchange at Tio?

Yes. I would recommend it, both a semester or one year. But if you can study here for one year, you will explore the culture more fully and you may have more chances to travel around Europe. I can’t believe that my exchange life is coming to an end. Things just went too fast. Seriously, I cannot bear to leave this country already!

What is your most remarkable experience here?

The best memories are related with the Hotel and Event Week. I’m sure there is no university that organizes such a project for its students.

Follow Tony on LinkedIn

Read more about: exchange, international