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Going global with Stéphanie Curfs

Do you remember Hotel and Event Management student Stéphanie Curfs? A few years ago she represented Tio for the EMCup, the competition for the hotel school of the year in Europe. Clearly that extra curricular experience only was the start. Currently she is doing a double degree at Tio Utrecht and, next to Hotel and Event Management, hopes to graduate for the marketing degree. As if that is not impressive enough she spent her last semester doing her minor in Hong Kong! What is it like to make the most of your time at Tio and study abroad?

Stéphanie, can you tell us a little bit more about the minor that you have chosen?

“I chose to do a Minor Abroad because I love to travel and see the world. Next to travelling it is very interesting to meet new people with different backgrounds. I did my minor through ISEP, this is an organization whom makes it possible for students to go where ever they want to go. I could pick 5 different schools and ISEP would assign me to one. My decision had fallen on Hong Kong because it is such an international city however it is super different from all the countries I had been to before."

Tio is known for being small scaled and personal, how was it to study at a different university?

“The university I have been to is CUHK, which stands for Chinese University of Hong Kong. It is a very big and international orientated university. Every year there are around 1,500 to 2,000 international exchange students. In total the university has 40,000 students which makes it huge and to go from one lecture to another I needed to travel by bus. The learning style was very different from the style at Tio. It was mostly one way communication whereas Tio is very interactive. The students are super motivated and eager to learn more about literally everything.”

From the whole experience, did you come across any challenges? And what was the most memorable experience?

“One challenge I came across whilst being in Hong Kong was the different mentality of the students. For them work, school and achieving well is the most important thing in life. Whereas in the Netherlands this is also important, however spare time is important as well. The most memorable experience was the travelling during the weekends. Since I only had classes three days a week, I was travelling every weekend. In half a year I visited 11 countries.”

During your time at Tio you have managed to build a great CV. Any other projects that you are currently working on?

“I am currently doing my graduation project at NIMA and doing a double degree. This means that I still need to pass some courses for e-commerce. If I pass all these courses I will get two degrees in 3.5 years, which is super cool! Next to that I am working on setting up my own patisserie. For this I am following some workshops and masterclasses. I already have an Instagram page; Stephaniecurfsbakes to show my work.”

Before we bid you farewell, any tips that you would have for fellow students?

“Some tips that I would like to share with you are that you need to enjoy your time as a student and get everything out of it while you still can.”

Follow Stéphanie on LinkedIn

Read more about: international, minor, study abroad