Saturday, November 17, 2012

November 17: International Students' Day

There's no way to write a blog on languages and not say anything about students. Most of us have studied languages at some point, and we know a lot of our readers studied languages at university and beyond.

International Students' Day is actually an internationally recognised day for students, not necessarily in reference to international students. That said, many universities recognise it as an opportunity to celebrate multiculturalism, which is fine by us as the real origins are a little too dark for a Saturday.

If you're studying in a university such as this, then you're probably a student.

If we take the day as originally intended, we'll be celebrating students in general. We'd love for most people to have the opportunity to study at university, since many people we've spoken to recommend the experience and consider it the best part of their life. Most who had the opportunity to study abroad will cite it as their favourite part. That's where we're tying in the international aspect of today.

One of the most commonly known means of studying abroad, at least in Europe, is ERASMUS (EuRopean Community Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students)... talk about a laboured acronym! We can safely say that most participants of ERASMUS loved their time abroad and the opportunity to see another culture and learn another language. It's a shame that the programme has seen better days. We hope that politicians will appreciate the value of the programme and continue to promote international exchange amongst students.

The bloke who inspired ERASMUS.

In honour of the day of students we'll be spending it sitting on beanbag chairs, smoking weed and not going to class! We'll also be ordering Domino's Pizza and watching L'Auberge Espagnole, a French-language film about a group of ERASMUS students. We highly recommend you watch it if you've ever been on ERASMUS or any other study abroad programme.