“Working in groups is enjoyable and instructive”

Vinny Rawley, 22, is from London where he studies Business Management for his second year. He is in Denmark for five months to study Marketing Management at Business Academy Aarhus.

Vinny chose to go abroad because he wanted to try a different educational system to the English one. He wanted to go somewhere in Scandinavia, and he ended up with Denmark because he did not know much about Denmark beforehand. “It was new and exciting and I expected to learn a lot about Danish culture and habits.” 

Actually Vinny expected Denmark to be very different from the UK. But after staying here for three months he has realised that there are several similarities. Especially our manners and habits are alike. “Both Danish and English people are reserved and you have to make an effort to integrate and get in touch with people. But after a while you find out that people are friendly, kind and open.”

But there are also differences: “Aarhus is a very small city – I can’t believe it is the second largest city in Denmark. There are no cars and no traffic compared to London, where I come from.”

Studying at Business Academy Aarhus

The “Marketing Management” programme has a more practical approach to the subjects that Vinny is used to from England. But still he can recognise a lot from his studies in the UK. One of the biggest differences is that you are together with the same class for all lessons all year. “In England you don’t have such a permanent class. But it gives you the opportunity to get to know people better.”

At Business Academy Aarhus the students work in groups with projects most of their time. Vinny finds this structure enjoyable and nice. ”It is a condition that forces you to work with different people – also people you would not choose yourself. You get to know your fellow students better, and you get to talk to people you would not approach yourself. All the students in a group can contribute and the product gets much better, because you can brainstorm and develop your ideas together. It is a very realistic working condition as when you get a real job you have to co-operate with different people all the time. Even the conflicts that occur are instructive. They prepare you for the labour market.”

The teachers at Business Academy Aarhus are very friendly and helpful. They are easy to approach and come into contact with. The relationship between students and teachers is similar to the English culture.       

Social life

Vinny lives in a dormitory for young students. There are a lot of different activities to participate in and it is here Vinny has found most of his new Danish and international friends. Students in Denmark are much more involved with each other than the English students. In Denmark it is quite normal to gather together for dinner or a cosy evening – that would never happen in the UK. “In the UK you can get to the end of a semester without talking to all the people in your class. In the UK students would not care about each other in this way.”     

The Future

Five months passes quickly. Vinny would really like to stay here for a longer time, but he has to get back to the UK for Christmas. “It will be tough to say goodbye to Denmark, the programme and all my new friends here.”  

Vinny will finish his course in July 2012 and get his BA in Business Management. And he will certainly come back to Denmark someday. In particular he looks forward to showing Aarhus to his family and friends from the UK and telling them about all his fantastic experiences in Denmark. He would not mind coming back to Denmark for a job either. But the language is a barrier. Vinny has heard that the Danish language is very difficult to pick up. “But you can get language lessons for free, if you come to Denmark for a job. That could be a possibility for me.”