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Ing Jiri Semmler, Brno University of Technology,ročník 5
About the country
Location of the place
Leuven is in the flanders part of Belgium, around 50km eastern from Brussels. Really nice student city.
Full of students, during summer lot of events, lot of industry. It is a students city, coparable with Brno (I guess) with big university KU Leuven. It means that during the summer time it is almost empty and in September it is full :) What suprised me is the public transport. The buses are ok but most of the people prefer the biking, which is cool :) There are lot of bars, places where to go run, some sports areas... I can image to live there...
Surroundings (possible trips, ...)
Belgium is small, you can reach everything in 2 hours by train. The traveling in Belgium is not so expensive. With the Gopass10 you have each way for €5 or cheaper, or you can get a unlimited week ticket for 25 eur or month ticket for 50eur. Bus is 3eur for one a or 77eur for the 3 months
Septentrio - middle size company (around 150ppl) focusing on GNSS. They have long experience with student's internship but they become a little bit picky and they pick just the good ones.
Web development of the internal tool. I wasn't participating in the key product but on supporting internal tool made by student. It means it was a mess. But the manager was pretty helpful
Salary (sufficient for local conditions?)
180eur / week. good enough to rent a room and live
everybody in Flanders speak english, no worries. And in the company was the English main language, because the people were from different parts of the world. Not only Dutch/French speaking Belgians but even Portuguese, Brazilian, Czech... So you should have high English level but where not...
Accommodation (price, who provided it)
Join the facebook groups, and you will find something. The semester starts on 15th September, so for anything after that, it could be quite difficult to find a place to stay. Try to fit your internship before 15th Sept. During the summer; you can find accommodation really easy and cheap
Meeting IAESTE members (pick-up at the airport, organised events...)
the local IAESTE in Leuven is starting, but the do a good job
Meeting other foreign students
I was the only one this year for the company.
Sport and culture
Lot of places for running and culture - it depends. Few clubs and lot of festivals
Food, local specialties
it depends - beer, chocolate, waffles...
Possibilites to communicate with the Czech Republic
it is 2017... come on
Recommendations for students who will go to the same place
Some money for the first month. I expected that I will be paid weekly so it was a little bit difficult. Don't forget to set up the bank account. I thought that I will go to the first bank and open the bank account for 4 months for free really easy... no way.
What not to forget with you
Attitude to do/try new things and good mood. Take some money, because the company pays monthly.
Benefits of the internship
amazing! But it depends how do you take it.
Cooperation with IAESTE in the foreign country
so far so good. The local IAESTE is really small and poor.
Overall experience with IAESTE
Other useful links
check my previous experience https://www.iaeste.cz/zkusenosti-z-praxi?page=student_report&id=594&ui_lang=cs_cz&lang=en_us from the same company