We are writing a short story about our project so far, which is probably close to our heart: we sent 6 Hungarian students to Spain to get acquainted with the Mediterranean working culture and to move a little out of their comfort zone.
The school’s students were really excited about the 3 weeks they could spend in one of the largest cities in Spain. Well, not only them, but so we were: this was the school’s first international project and we were helping from the very beginning and we were preparing them for the big trip and for the challenges.
3 gardener students and 3 vendor student landed a bit sleepy but curiously after a long flight from Budapest. They all flew for the first time and were abroad for the first time in their life. We tried to find internship places for them where the family atmosphere was dominant and the mentors could personally pay attention to all of them. They helped them to get integrated according to their special learning needs and not only in the workplace but also in the city. Beach, fresh air, many museums and endless passages: besides their internship, the youngsters had time to explore the area and surroundings.
Their initial anxiety were quickly gone, too: the local staff from their intership placement greeted them with that well known genuine Spanish cheer and answered every of their question. In Spanish, English, or by pointing out by hands- just as it used to be. Their homesickness also subsided after a few days as they became more familiar with the local flavors, streets and rules.
The gardener students were introduced to new plant types and techniques, and the vendor students were introduced to new products, product placement tricks, and communication techniques that can increase customer satisfaction. Upon their returning after 3 weeks, they enthusiastically told about their classmates the memories and shared their experiences with their teachers and with apprentices from all grades.
Encouraged by the success of this mobility, we hope to continue working with other students and teachers next year!