- Ana Caroline Alves Gonçalves, a Brazilian student on the Dual Degree in Business Management and Marketing at the CEU UCH campus in Elche, took the decision to go international with her education three years ago.
Three years ago, after finishing her pre-university studies in Brazil, Ana Caroline Alves wasn’t very sure what she wanted to do with her life. Her sister, who had already been living in Elche for a few years, suggested that she should come to Spain. The current social circumstances and lack of opportunities in Brazil made her look into the possibility of doing a degree in Alicante province. Finally, the chance to do a dual degree with CEU in Elche, and on an international campus to boot, was what convinced her. Now she combines her studies with her work as a student assistant at the University library.
Why did you decide to study with CEU in Elche?
When I found out about CEU, I was attracted by the fact that it’s an international university with a lot of different programmes and opportunities to offer. I did a bit more research and I saw that I could do the degrees that I’d already thought about doing, Business Management and Marketing, and even that I could do them both as a dual degree. That made my mind up and I decided to enrol here.
What’s your experience been like up to now?
It’s been easier than I was expecting, to be honest. The University has given me all the support I needed and the lecturers are really committed to helping the students. Over the last three years, I’ve had the chance to take part in different projects. That and the fact that we can really interact with our lecturers enable us to gain greater insights into the real world of employment that’s waiting for us when we graduate.
What’s your opinion of attending lectures using the HyFlex system?
As with everything, there are good and bad sides to it. With lectures at home, I find it more difficult to concentrate and maintain the same level of productivity compared with when I’m at university. But one benefit you get from being at home is time. If I don’t have to leave home to go to lectures, I’ve got more time to devote to studying.
With the HyFlex system, we can choose to stay at home or go to campus, and that’s great, because you can adapt your choice depending on what you need to do for each course. You don’t miss out either way. And the lecturers are just as focused on all the students and our questions, whether we’re at home or in the classroom.
What’s the best thing about what you’re studying?
I’m doing a dual degree, and it’s the Marketing part that most appeals to me. I’ve really enjoyed the courses about consumer behaviour and communication.
The international campus experience
How are you finding being in a different country and experiencing a different culture and a different education system?
Regarding the education side of things, it’s very different, but it hasn’t been difficult to adapt. What I found a bit more difficult to adapt to was life away from lectures. To settle in and adapt when you’re so far from home isn’t easy. But in time it all comes together, you meet new people every day who can help you, you discover many new things and you’re always learning. For me, it’s definitely true that Spain’s culture and the experiences that I’ve had here from day to day have definitely helped me grow as a person. That’s given a lot of new perspectives on life with regard to a wide range of issues.
Where do you see yourself career-wise when you graduate?
I’m not sure yet. I’m thinking about doing a master’s degree to gain more knowledge and skills. And perhaps I’d like to work in the areas of marketing that I’ve found really appealing.