In just a few weeks as an international student in Madrid, I am completely immersed in the Spanish language, culture and lifestyle. Most surprising to me so far is the diversity here, and how many other countries, cultures and languages I am surrounded by. I had the chance to interview a few international students also spending time here at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid.
From left to right,
Kirsti Boyton, 21, University of Strathclyde, Scotland
Aaron Polley, 20, Coventry University, United Kingdom
Ana Neves, 20, Instituto Politécnico de Leiria, Portugal
Caterina Bighellini, 24, Università degli studi di Verona, Italy
What languages do you speak?
Kirsti: English, basic level of Spanish.
Ana: Portuguese, English, Spanish.
Caterina: Italian, German, English, and Spanish.
Do you have any favorite artists, bands, groups or music genres?
Kirsti: I am a lover of all types of music from heavy metal to chart music. But given the choice my favourites are probably rock/metal plus some electronic and drum and bass. Some of my favourite bands are Cancer Bats, In Flames and Skindred.
Aaron: Electro and drum n bass: Justice, Simian, Disclosure, Sub focus, Crystal Castles, Gorillaz, Dj Fresh.
Ana: Bon Iver, Lana del Rey, Two Door Cinema Club, Coldplay, Kings of Leon.
Caterina: Pop, Rock, Lounge/Fun, The Killers/P!nk, Katy Perry.
Any favorite sports, activities or hobbies?
Kirsti: I am not a very sporty person, but I do love swimming and badminton. Back in Scotland I enjoyed going to the gym, pole fitness (like pole dancing but without the slutty factor) and playing video games..
Aaron: Tennis, Golf, badminton, music festivals, camping, cycling, frisbee [and] holidays!!
Ana: Reading, dancing, traveling, writing, [and] listening to music.
Caterina: Swimming, Listening to music, cooking cakes, shopping, and going to the cinema.
What do you study/major?
Kirsti: I am studying for an honours degree in international business with economics and Spanish.
Aaron: Studying Financial economics in Coventry and economics here in Madrid.
Ana: Journalism and Multimedia.
Caterina: Tourism & Communication Foreign Languages.
Why did you choose to study in Madrid?
Kirsti: The only city I wanted to do my Erasmus in was Madrid because it is the capital city of Spain; it is so international and cosmopolitan. I didn’t really care that the price of living was higher; I visited the city once before and really liked the people and felt comfortable in the city. It was also a plus that the accent was easier to understand.
Aaron: [I] wanted a year of relaxation in the sun and to learn Spanish, and to learn some of the economic history of Spain and meet loads of new people!!
Ana: I’ve always loved Spain and their culture. I had Spanish classes at my university and I loved them. And I also always wanted to study in a foreign country. It was two passions in one. I chose Madrid because is the principal city of Spain and has a lot of life. Besides, I really enjoyed the study program of UC3M. I’m so not regretted!
Caterina: I love Spanish culture. Madrid [is] the capital of everything.