Voices

What international mobility students have to say about studying and living in Berne.

Image
Maria Bustamente, eine Studentin aus Kolumbien, auf dem Hochschulareal vonRoll

Maria from Medellin, Colombia

“I’m studying education in Medellin, Colombia. I was able to come to Berne for a semester thanks to a cooperation project between my home university and Berne University of Teacher Education. In the ‘Mobility and Global Learning’ seminar I presented the subject of my Master’s thesis, and received some useful suggestions.

I really like the cultural diversity in Switzerland. But Berne also reminded me of Medellin a little, because of its mountain backdrop. The International Office of Berne University of Teacher Education took very good care of us. We went on a lot of trips with other foreign students. I like the people here – they are very friendly and helpful.”

Image
Sarah Cullen, eine Studentin aus Südafrika, die an der PHBern studiert hat. Sie sitzt im Zug, im Hintergrund sind Schnee und ein See zu sehen

Sarah, South Africa

“Europeans have many misconceptions about South Africa. At the same time, though, I also had misconceptions about Europe and Switzerland. During my time in Berne I taught English at Köniz upper secondary school. Unlike in South Africa, people are more relaxed about discipline here. In a school environment which does not employ disciplinary measures such as confiscation or target setting, students have to motivate themselves. This really turned everything I knew as a teacher on its head.

I’ll never forget my experiences in Switzerland. I have grown both professionally and personally here.”

Image
Benya und Moodley, zwei Studierende aus Südafrika vor dem Hochschulgebäude vonRoll

Cathryn and Olwethu, South Africa

Olwethu Benya:

“I’m learning a lot about myself during the internship. As a teacher, it’s good to know who you are. It’s important to me to get an insight into different teaching methods. This way, I can learn new things all the time, and it helps me to even better motivate and teach my pupils. A few group sequences that I’ve learnt or developed in Switzerland I can apply 1:1 in South Africa.”

Cathryn Moodley:

“We’re staying with host families. It’s nice to learn about Swiss family life. And it’s great to see that children can safely play outdoors here, even alone. At the same time, the comparison can make you feel sad. But it’s giving us a new perspective about what is possible. It’s also exciting to see what Swiss people do in their leisure time. They’re much more active than South Africans: they do a lot of hiking and biking.”