For the last five years, young professionals from the Basque Country have been visiting LSE for a specially designed annual ten-week programme on European Political Economy and Finance. The programme is supported by the Diputación Foral de Bizkaia, which covers the full tuition costs and accommodation in London. Applications are now being accepted for the October-December 2012 course.
What is the experience like?
‘We would need to be at the university by about 9.30, for four hours of seminars, lectures and guest speakers, plus private study in the library for essays and presentations,’ says Usoa, a 2009 participant. Borja, in 2010, elaborates: ‘We go to lectures and gain some basic knowledge, and then go into depth in the private seminars. I’ve enjoyed these seminars most – the academics were highly prepared and gave us insights from their own expertise. They made us think about the different reasons for policies and events. They pressed us hard and got us to think and argue from different angles in ways we would not have done otherwise.’
Olga, a 2009 participant, describes the term. ‘Para cada una de las 10 semanas del curso tenemos asignadas varias actividades, entre las cuales tenemos Lectures (6 diferentes asignaturas sobre la Economía y Política de la Unión Europea), Public Lectures (conferencias públicas donde la LSE invita a la “creme de la creme” del mundo), Seminars con los profesores de cada una de las seis asignaturas, Private Seminars con nuestro tutor Julius Sen, Private Seminars with External Speakers sobre temas que no entran en temario de las clases ( Professor Cox, Katinka Barysh, Lord William Wallace, etc.), Private External Visits ( Visit to London Assembly, Visit to House of Parliament, etc.) y por supuesto (y esto es lo que ocupa la mayor parte de nuestro tiempo) tenemos MILES de paginas de lecturas de todas las asignaturas y varios trabajos por presentar a nuestro tutor Julius. La vida en la LSE es muy intensa y hay muchísimas cosas por aprender, leer, hablar y ver. Los profesores que tenemos son de calidad extraordinaria y el sistema del estudio en la LSE es desde mi punto de vista de los mejores de Europa.’
2 A unique cultural experience
‘Señores, es altamente recomendable visitar Londres por Halloween!! En ninguna ciudad he visto tanta gente disfrazada, con tanta creatividad y originalidad! Desde los convencionales vampiros, muertos, brujas y dráculas hasta los más frikis vestidos de manga, de militares y de las cosas que ni yo me sé.’ (Olga, 2009)
‘London is a great place to socialise – there are people here from all over the world and lots of places to meet LSE students, from lectures to bars.’ (Marta, 2010)
‘We went to a football match in the Emirates Stadium and saw Arsenal play Liverpool. It was an amazing atmosphere and the match was brilliant.’ (Usoa, 2009)
‘Don’t stay in bed – take a ride around the city and explore the old buildings, the museums and markets.’ (Ines, 2011)
I would recommend going to Brick Lane on a Sunday, taking a boat trip on the Thames and watching a rugby match.’ (Fernando, 2011)
3 Good for your CV
‘I learnt about a wide range of European issues: among others, the EU structure and how it works, European politics and how they come about, the role of the EU in the world, etc, gaining a general overview of the European Union. Due to the international crisis we were living by the end of 2008, one of the main topics within the programme was the credit crunch. I learnt a lot about the financial crisis, its causes, how it affects the EU as a whole and the solutions that the EU holds for the crisis.’ (Joana, 2008)
‘The programme allowed me to get to know about the EU and the English culture first hand. The experience has also expanded my worldview and has given me the opportunity to discover new abilities of myself.’ (Lorea, 2008)
‘I improved my English, which is very important nowadays. I learned skills like how to approach and analyse new topics. I also learned a lot about European integration, which is essential for my career. It’s been a great programme.’ (Marta, 2010)
Does the programme appeal? Visit the programme website for more information and a link to the application form.