To begin with, introduce yourself, what are you studying, what year are you in and how would you describe yourself?
PETER – Hello everyone! My name is Petar Marić and I come from Sinj. I study gastronomy at the Aspira Polytechnic and am currently in my second year of study. He would describe himself as an adventurer, an ambitious person eager for new knowledge and skills, meeting new people and cultures because there is only one life!
ANAMARIA – My name is Anamaria Šimićak. I am currently a second-year Gastronomy student in the city of Zagreb. I would describe myself as a very curious, persistent and creative person, eager for knowledge and new experiences.
Where are you currently on Erasmus and what are your experiences?
PETAR – I am currently in Istanbul on the Erasmus program! For me, Erasmus is one of the best things that has happened in my life. I packed my life in a few suitcases and set off on an adventure, a city on two continents, a city that is several times larger in terms of population than our entire country, a city that is awake 24/7. Erasmus has largely already started, the exams are getting ready – no one knows what else will happen until the end, but I do know one thing! I will remember this for the rest of my life!
ANAMARIA – I am currently in Istanbul, one of the most populous cities in Europe, at the junction of two continents. As part of the Erasmus+ program, I am studying at Aydin University Istanbul. In short, my experiences so far have been fantastic. It is a great honor to be a part of this wonderful story. Life in a city of millions, surrounded by other people, faith, a different way of life and the opportunity to become one of them myself, means something priceless to me.
What would you single out as the best thing about Erasmus?
PETAR – I would definitely emphasize meeting new people and making friends. On Erasmus, I have the opportunity to meet people from different parts of the world and share experiences with them. This is one of the most valuable things that Erasmus provides. Definitely another great thing about Erasmus that he would single out is the opportunity to explore a new culture and get to know different traditions. I have the opportunity to try different foods, participate in local events and learn about unique customs. It is a real adventure that opened my horizons and changed my view of the world.
ANAMARIA – All this is thanks to the Erasmus+ program, which provides the opportunity of a life of independence and the acquisition of not only knowledge and skills, but also new friendships. I would single out that as the best thing that the Erasmus+ program offers!
Did you make any new friends during your stay on Erasmus? Where are the other students from?
ANAMARIA – During my stay in Istanbul, I made many acquaintances. Some of them I will remember all my life. As for the other students, there is a really wide spectrum of people and cultures. I would dare to say that there are us from all over the world, from Asia to America.
PETER – Of course! I made friends and met a lot of fantastic students, while the best thing is that we have at least one thing in common — we went on an adventure hundred of kilometers from our hometown and decided to try something new — Erasmus! There are students from all over the world, from Mexico to China…
What do you miss from Croatia?
PETAR – I miss my work, friends and family the most, with whom I spent all my free time outside of my student obligations… It is something that you are partially deprived of in a situation like this – but that is why we are all there for each other and we try to the day goes as smoothly as possible and we don’t think about what we‘re missing.
ANAMARIA – Although Turkish gastronomy is very diverse and appreciated, from my homeland Croatia, I still miss our Mediterranean diet and the smell from my mother‘s kitchen. Unfortunately, no one can replace that.
What would you say to other colleagues? Why should you choose that destination for Erasmus?
PETAR — Recommendation to all colleagues, if you have the opportunity to participate in the Erasmus program, do it, such opportunities are not to be missed. Erasmus program is something that builds you as a person – who has no problem moving away from his environment, meeting new people and culture and embarking on something new. The experience, memories, friendships, experiences gained on the Erasmus program are priceless… Istanbul is an excellent choice for going on Erasmus, especially if you are interested in gastronomy! This city is known for its rich and diverse culinary scene. You can explore the different flavors of Turkish cuisine, such as kebabs, baklava, pide, meze and much more – which is found at every turn on the streets. Istanbul will give you an incredible experience of enjoying food and discovering new flavors. That’s why if he had to choose again, he would choose Istanbul!
ANAMARIA What I can finally say to all future students is the fact that life as an Erasmus student is a great and significant experience that every student who has the will, opportunity and courage should experience. In addition to knowledge, improving language and communication, Erasmus also provides great acquaintances, strengthens character and builds a person‘s identity. Also, for the best destination as an Erasmus student, I highly recommend Turkey, specifically the city of Istanbul. It is a city that has “that something”, that is, as I like to say, “has a soul.“ The price is very acceptable for student life and provides great opportunities for education, but especially for entertainment. Definitely worth experiencing the adventure of a lifetime!