Making the decision to leave your country and come to study in another city, with another culture, language and customs may not be easy. It sure fills you with questions and doubts. That’s why, to guide you a bit, we have talked with students who have gone through the same thing as you and we have asked them some questions that we think can be helpful for your decision.
We talked with 3 different students from different nationalities and programmes:
Here you can find some tips and recommendations they make for future international students.
Why did you decide for Barcelona and EADA?
Bram Eeraerts: A multitude of ideas sparked my interest in coming to EADA. These ranged from jumping into the unknown of a foreign city and culture (as a first time experience, being away from home for this long) to broadening my interests and knowledge in the managerial context, more specifically focusing on the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnological industry as an extension of my background in Biomedical Sciences. EADA was put forward as the school that ‘made business people grow’ and gave you the opportunity to fully develop yourself as a young professional in this master’s that was considered to be a life-changing experience. About the latter, I can already say this will definitely be the case.
Ginevra Bianco: I chose to come to study at EADA due to its strong interdisciplinary curriculum that I knew would really contribute to my career objectives. By carefully analyzing the classes, the teaching methodology and the multicultural environment that thrives at the university, I knew I could gain the managerial and entrepreneurial skills needed to become the driving force for competitiveness in a global environment. The possibility of gaining cutting-edge business knowledge in a business school that promotes the cultivation of a global perspective as a vital part of post graduate studies fascinated me. Indeed, EADA integrates business trips, specializations, leadership modules and projects such as the innovation challenge into its curriculum, elements that I believe are of fundamental importance to gain crucial practical skills and the necessary expertise needed to become a worldwide, driving force for innovation. Moreover, the strong industry connections that the university has to offer, together with the unique Barcelona experience, would have enabled me to gain international exposure and develop a creative, international mindset. So, I saw EADA as an opportunity not only to acquire the technical skills needed to act as a catalyst for growth, but also as an opportunity to enhance my interpersonal skills in order to become an international leader.
Piedad de Garay: I was looking to study abroad and as soon as I reached out to someone from EADA I felt safe and also really supported in every step of the way. Whenever I emailed someone from EADA they would reply as soon as possible, always making sure I had everything in order. They were very supportive from the beginning and I didnt find anything like that in other schools.
How would you describe the admission process? Was it easy? How long did it take?
Bram Eeraerts: The whole process was straightforward and was organized in such a way that it could be fulfilled in the most convenient way for the student. For me personally, it was very easy to be in continuous contact with the school while I prepared myself for the tests. I finished the whole admission process probably in one month, considering from the very start (applying for the tests) to the very end (The ‘WELCOME’ message).
Ginevra Bianco: The Admission Process didn’t take long, less than one month! It was pretty straightforward.
Piedad de Garay: It took like 3 months, it was not that long and everything went smoothly from the beginning.
Did you need a student visa to come to Barcelona? If yes, can you tell us a bit about this process and how it worked? Did EADA provide you with the necessary documents?
Bram Eeraerts: As I am a citizen from Belgium, and thus part of the EU, I didn’t need to get a Visa.
Ginevra Bianco: Being from the EU, I did not need a student visa to come to Barcelona. However, I had to apply for both the Empadronamiento, a city hall registration to inform the municipal register where you currently reside and the NIE, the national identification number issued to all non-Spanish people seeking residency for various purposes such as work or study. Try to apply for both of them as soon as possible since the procedures take some time!
Piedad de Garay: Yes I did. For me it was quite difficult because of all of the COVID restrictions and there were no available appointments. The Spanish embassy in Mexico kept asking me for more documents, money, etc. But EADA’s staff helped me by providing me with the right documents, contacting the embassy and making sure I had everything.
Did you find accomodation before or after arriving in Barcelona? Was it easy or difficult? Did you use Studentfy’s services?
Bram Eeraerts: The accommodation was found, and was already booked and signed before I arrived. I am renting an apartment together with a friend and also an EADA student. I started looking at the start of August. The general renting price of apartments in Barcelona is pretty high. It is difficult to find the best ‘bang for your buck’.
Ginevra Bianco: I found accommodation before arriving in Barcelona. EADA actually works with a Student Relocation Agency to ensure that students find the housing option that is right for them during their stay in the city, so I was able to find my house through this agency. I took my time to explore a variety of options, however it was not difficult and it did not take as much time as I expected.
Piedad de Garay: Yes I did and it was so easy I could not believe it. It took me maybe a day or two to fully decide where I wanted to live, but there were many options with several different price ranges.
Was it easy for you to immerse in the new culture after your arrival in Barcelona?
Bram Eeraerts: This surely depends from person to person, but as I am a more reserved person, the Barcelona culture is something completely different from what I am used to. The vibe and ambience of this city feels like it’s just a country on its own. One glimpse at the streets and you will probably find more than 10 nationalities. Easy to immerse? Because of the open culture, yes. Easy for me? Not necessarily as this jump into the unknown demands a great deal of adaptive capacity from my part.
Ginevra Bianco: It was very easy to immerse in the city’s culture. Barcelona is a very international city that constantly fosters its international community by continuously organizing events, meetups and making everyone feel at home and welcome. The gastronomy is amazing and the city has many services to facilitate one’s mobility in an economical way. Overall, there is an optimal combination of climate, infrastructure, open mindedness and cultural offering, which makes the city an ideal and incredible place to live in.
Piedad de Garay: It was not easy but definitely worth it. I come from overseas and everything is so different, even the smallest things. But not being easy to immerse in the culture made it a good challenge for me because I forced myself to go out of my comfort zone and talk to people, explore the city and make new friends.
What would you advise future international students that want to come to study at EADA and live in Barcelona?
Bram Eeraerts: 3 words. Just do it. I have only been living in Barcelona and attending EADA classes for a bit over one month, and I can honestly say that this is already a life changing experience. The different cultures, and people from all over the world that you get to know throughout the year is just incredible. You get faced with different perspectives to problems and pulled out of your intellectual comfort zone.
The biggest advice is just to take that jump into the unknown. This adventure is worth the leap of faith, as I am 100% positive that the fear of regret will be much bigger than the fear of failure, this “life starts outside of your comfort zone”-cliché is the real deal.
Ginevra Bianco: I would advise them to embrace the local way of life and try to learn some basic Spanish and/or Catalan. This will definitely facilitate your day to day activities and make your stay in Barcelona easier. Additionally, I would suggest allowing yourself plenty of time to familiarize yourself with Barcelona; do your research and have a monthly expense budget in mind before moving to the city. Accurately research the right area for you to live in and speak to a variety of different agencies and private landlords. In this way, you will be in a better position to efficiently gauge the market rates for your neighborhood and find your best option.
Piedad de Garay: Barcelona is a beautiful city, full of people from all over the world, it is very easy to move around the city and you have plenty of options for accommodation, food, entertainment, etc. And EADA is absolutely more than I expected it to be. My advice is be yourself and be ready to go out of your comfort zone, don’t be afraid of coming here because everyone is going through the same thing and you will make new friends and create new memories, so don’t take too much time deciding if you should come, just come to EADA Barcelona.