Can you please introduce yourself briefly? How long have you stayed in Turkey? Where do you live in Istanbul?
I am Amre Hussein. I am from France. I study Economy in Marmara University. I will stay here for a semester. I live in Kadıköy here.
Tell us why do you preferred to attend Erasmus in Turkey?
In Europe, everywhere is the same so I wanted to meet a new culture and lifestyle.
“I see that I feel safe here and everything is like what it is in a European country.”
What about your thoughts before coming to Turkey?
I did not know much. I just saw from the media that it is dangerous but I said that if there is something dangerous about the country, I wanted to see the country myself so I came here and I see that I feel safe here and everything is like what it is in a European country.
How was your first week in Turkey and in the university?
It was difficult at first because there was nobody who knew English in the streets but in time I met some people and I made some Erasmus and French friends so it was easier. In the university, it was hard for me because it was my first time that I studied in English so everyday speaking in just English and Turkish made me tired but now I got used to it.
What do you think about education facilities in Marmara University?
It is good, I prefer the organization system of here than France because we have less courses here so we have more time to read every topic properly.
When comparing two universities’ academicians, are there any differences in terms of their approaches to students?
They are really helpful. If you have a problem, they help you immediately.
How do you find the courses you take during the programme?
I think the language of courses is a little bit easier here but we study the same topics in here with France so there is no much difference.
What do you think about Turkish education in general?
I think it is perfect because many of the students can speak English but in France they can’t. For example, here you need to make some preparations to get in English department but in France you just go and get in so using English becomes more difficult like that.
Can you communicate effectively with local people? How did you manage to solve the language problem?
With the students, yes but when I am in the street it is more difficult to communicate
with local people however in general it is okay for me. I made a Turkish friend here, most of the time I am with her so I can manage my language problem.
Did you get used to the transportation system of the city and the place you stay in terms of accommodation?
There is usually traffic here so it is hard to get somewhere in time .Also, I think accommodation is kind of expensive here.
Can you tell us some cultural and social differences between your hometown and the place you live in details?
Not really big differences but transportation and school organizations are a little bit different.
What do you think about the Turkish cuisine?
I’ve eaten street food like dürüm, lahmacun, çiğ köfte but my favorite food is Künefe.
“There are lots of thing to do.”
How is the city in terms of living conditions as an Erasmus student?
I think it’s good because there are lots of places to visit and there are lots of thing to do. If you have time, you can go to the European side and visit some museums.
What do you think about the social life in Istanbul?
There are many students in ESN and I can contact with them. Also, there are many cafes in the city. You can study, meet someone or you can drink something alone in there.
“ It’s very active! “
How is the social life on the university campus?
It’s very active! There are lots of organization clubs like the diving club and some groups for sharing notes and books. I can say that It’s better than in France.
How is the city for sightseeing?
It’s OK. In Istanbul, I have been to Sultanahmet, Topkapı, and Basilica Cistern and many other places.
How is the night life in Istanbul?
As I said before, there are many places that you can go for your social life or for different reasons.
Which cities and places have you visited in Turkey so far?
In Turkey, I have been to Antalya and Bodrum.
What are the things that you like the most in Turkey as an Erasmus student?
The social life is more developed than in France.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of İstanbul?
Actually, we have less lessons in Turkey than in France. For example I have schedule starting from 8 am to 8 pm. in France. You have no time to do something.
What are the difficulties you encountered and the happy moments you experienced during the programme? Can you tell us a memorable moment you went through?
Communication with Turkish people is the difficulty that I encountered. So meeting with Turkish people is among my memorable moments that I will always remember.
What are the three things that come to your mind when you consider your
Erasmus experience in Turkey?
Discovering new people and culture, finding out more about myself and new style of education.
How did Erasmus in Turkey change your life?
I was afraid to be alone because during my student life, I was with my friends. Now, it is the first time that I am alone in a new city so I am discovering myself. But I made many new friends in Istanbul.
“ I discovered a new style of life. “
Did the Erasmus Program meet your expectations, why do you think so?
I think, yes. I discovered a new style of life. It is good for me and my future experiences in work and the study I took. Thanks to Erasmus, I know how to plan a travel.
Do you have any recommendation for those who are planning to attend Erasmus in Turkey?
Find a flat earlier. When I came to Turkey for the first time, I went to Antalya with my friends and looked for flats from there.
Tell us why the others should choose Erasmus in Turkey!
Firstly, Istanbul is a beautiful city! You can enjoy life with lots of different cafes and restaurants.
I love Erasmus in Istanbul because…
It is different and unique! You need to live in Istanbul at least once in your life!