Sarah's Semester in France

Exchange Semester in Lyon by Sarah Niemeyer

Hey I’m Sarah and I did an exchange semester at the BBA Inseec in Lyon. Even though the semester was only 3,5 months long, I met so many amazing people from all cultures, saw a lot of France and of course learned a lot!

I always knew that I wanted to study abroad even for just one semester and it was an easy decision to go to a partner uni of the Hochschule Bremerhaven as the application process and the cooperation are much easier than going as a so-called “Free-Mover”.

It is hard to choose the right country to go, because there are just a lot of really cool destinations! Nevertheless, I decided to improve my French and study at either Le Havre, Bordeaux or Lyon. As I always wanted to live in a “Big city” and the study programme sounded interesting, I decided to go to Lyon. First thing to do was the application for the Erasmus + sponsorship and second, the application for the partner university. With the help of our international Office, it was all done easily.

The university was a highly regarded private institution with around 3000 students (rather small compared to the other French unis) and very strict concerning the attendance… I chose to participate in the so called “Atlantis” programme, which was mainly a cooperation between an American and a Swedish university with Inseec in Lyon. It gives participants out if these countries the chance to earn a double degree. Hence, other international students were allowed to join in for the first semester in Lyon. We had mainly business management courses which helped me deepen my knowledge I got from my studies in Bremerhaven. The international professors designed their classes to be very diversified (presentations, video shoots, …) and challenging and expected a lot of work.

The life in Lyon is great! A beautiful, old city itself with a lot of things to explore and great starting point for trips all around France or even Switzerland. Housing costs were compared to Bremerhaven much more expensive, but they were student homes (“Residence”) all around the city and as an international student one could even apply for a the CAF-Sponsorship from the French state. As Lyon is a big student city, there were activities all around the city, especially from the Erasmus-programme.

All in all, it was a very good experience, I wouldn’t want to miss. It was definitely a challenge, as France might be a neighbour country of Germany but the differences between culture, work habits and attitude towards life were very different. However, this is an important lesson to learn coming from an international study programme like CTM!!