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Global BBA Study Abroad Report, Aileth - Goethe University Frankfurt Am Main, Germany

  • Name: Aileth
  • Year of Study: 3 (Global BBA)
  • Institution: Goethe University Frankfurt Am Main, Faculty of Economics and Business, Germany
  • Period: 2023 October 〜 2024 February

We caught up with Aileth, an international student from Mexico who joined the Global BBA Program in Fall 2021.

Aileth, driven by a profound desire to step out of her comfort zone and immerse herself in diverse countries and cultures, opted to participate in an exchange program in Germany. During this program, she pursued her studies at Goethe University Frankfurt AM Main from October to February.

Located in the vibrant city of Frankfurt, the school stands as a beacon of excellence in higher education. Renowned for its triple accreditation by AACSB, AMBA, and EQUIS, Frankfurt am Main University boasts excellent academic programs, a diverse student community, and a vibrant campus life.

While her absence has been felt within our close-knit community, we eagerly anticipate hearing about Aileth's experiences and adventures during her time abroad.

Why did you want to go on exchange?

I recognized an opportunity to broaden my horizons and venture further out of my comfort zone. While I already had some knowledge of Japanese before traveling to Japan, I had no prior experience with German when I went to Germany. This presented me with the chance to immerse myself in an even more challenging environment.

Why did you choose Germany and Goethe University Frankfurt Am Main?

I had met some exchange students from this university at NUCB, and they highly recommended it. Knowing nothing about German culture or language, I was eager to learn as much as possible. Additionally, my interest in central banks was piqued by the knowledge that they offered a class focused on macroeconomics and monetary policy. My decision to choose Frankfurt was further bolstered when I discovered that the headquarters of the ECB (European Central Bank) were located there. In fact, I recently visited the ECB headquarters and attended a presentation on it.

How was your arrival, tell us about your classes/projects and some interesting things you have done on campus.

When I arrived, I had to pay the remaining amount of the 'semester contribution,' which was necessary to obtain our student card and number. This contribution offered benefits such as free transportation throughout Frankfurt and complimentary entrance to some museums. I had become lost while attempting to locate the office where I could finalize the payment and receive my student card. Fortunately, a kind German student helped me find it. The campus was expansive and adorned with numerous libraries and cafeterias, making exploration enjoyable.

Once enrolled in my classes, catching up was effortless. All course materials were conveniently uploaded online, and daily classes were recorded and made available on the official website. There were no mandatory projects, and assignments were optional for additional practice. Our classes were divided into tutorials and lectures; lectures resembled traditional classes, while tutorials focused on reviewing past content and assignments. I spent most of my time at one of the libraries.

In one particular class, 'Leadership in the Financial Industry,' we were privileged to have important guests almost every week, delivering speeches on leadership and sharing their personal journeys. Notable figures such as the CEO of Lufthansa made appearances, and I was pleasantly surprised by the casual atmosphere.

The university organized various events for students, both within Goethe and throughout Frankfurt. We received emails inviting us to join WhatsApp groups where events were announced, providing opportunities to meet new people. These events included board games, language exchange gatherings, visits to the ECB Headquarters, and day trips approximately every two weeks.

What budget would you recommend for the exchange in Germany?

It depends on whether they have a chance to be in a dorm since it makes it so much cheaper (rent being around €300) since other apartments are €500 and can get as high as €750 monthly (utilities included) sometimes even higher. The first month one must pay the deposit but it’s actually given back once you move out. Groceries and prices for daily expenses are the same as Japan. The embassy also asks us to have a certain amount of money in our personal bank account at the time of applying, it could be quite a high number for some.

What have you missed most about NUCB/Japan?

How kind everyone is, the sense of community and warmth, how we were encouraged to be entrepreneurial, and being seen as an individual instead of just another student (personalized), feels easier to ask for advice.

What are your goals for the future and how will this exchange help you?

I would like to work in the banking industry or in the manufacturing industry both of which Germany is well known for. My classes were very focused on both macroeconomics and monetary policy, I truly feel like I’ve learned a lot.

What advice do you have for Global BBA students considering an exchange?

Don’t be scared of the unknown, just throw yourself to the experience, there’s nothing to regret. Just make sure to be organized and prepare things in advance (like the documents for the visa).