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Institute for life, food and horticultural sciences and landscaping

International students' testimonials

dorotaDorota, polish landscaping student

Dorota, a dynamic student from Poland, spent the first year of Landscaping’ master at AGROCAMPUS OUEST Angers under the Erasmus programme. 
As a student at Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Dorota was following courses in landscape architecture engineering when she decided to come and spend a year in France to improve her French and immerse herself in French culture. At AGROCAMPUS OUEST she discovered a scientific approach to landscaping than she had previously known.


ERASMUS: the total immersion experience


Dorota did not experience the language barrier: before her arrival she had a very good French level, which made it easier for her to settle in. However, she had to adapt to new organisational methods and to different teaching practices. “At the beginning, I managed everything by myself all the time. I had a lot of trouble understanding how the French educational system works, particularly regarding the assessment procedure… but after a few weeks, I felt I was part of things!” 
During this study year, Dorota particularly appreciated the “student work projet supervised by an expert”, an original educational activity undertaken alongside professionals, which Dorota considers to have been her “first professional experience”. Within her project team she was able to maximise the artistic side of her profile and her graphic skills. 
Dorota also took part in Expo Flo 2012, an event for the general public organised every two years by AGROCAMPUS OUEST engineering students in horticulture and landscaping, which attracts 7000 visitors: Erasmus programme students got together to design and construct an original garden on the theme of Germany.

Before returning to Poland to complete her course in landscape architecture engineering, Dorota spent a 5-month traineeship in a Parisian design office. She worked on a variety of landscaping projects, for which she drew on her artistic and scientific skills. Dorota made the very most of her last few months in France, renting accommodation along with a classmate. After all, Erasmus is also a personal experience, and by being open and dynamic, Dorota quickly formed real bonds of friendship with her fellow students and is looking forward to keeping in touch with them.

Max, graduate engineer in landscaping

Today, AGROCAMPUS OUEST’s graduate engineer, Max spent two years at AGROCAMPUS OUEST as a German student. He told us all about his experience of the course.
Max choose to come and do his Master’s at AGROCAMPUS OUEST, a partner institution of his college, Hochschule Weitenstephan, located near Munich (Germany), via the ERASMUS programme. Max was very pleased with the 4 semesters he spent at AGROCAMPUS OUEST and used this experience to learn about landscaping approaches. The training that he did, offered him  a first look from an academic perspective on the science of landscaping. The place given over to graphic production during projects was less significant that in his home college, and this is what made his experience so richly rewarding. “Changing my habits and seeing things differently took me at least a semester!”
“I think ERASMUS students benefit from studying abroad and my own experience at AGROCAMPUS OUEST certainly confirms this. Everyone is really nice. You can always count on someone, whether another student or a member of staff. In terms of the language, it’s not always easy for the first few months, but gradually you begin to understand and you have the feeling of discovering a language, which is very enjoyable.” 
These two years enabled him to improve his French considerably. “When I arrived, I wasn’t even able to buy a cinema ticket!” he admits. He had no difficulty making new friends. The orientation weekend, the evenings organised by students, and life in the dormitory also helped him to settle in.