RSM Erasmus University

Travel Tips

Monday, August 5th, 2013

Written by: Jennifer Bullion

Overall I loved my trip abroad and learned a lot but not every situation was a great one. I have some tips that will hopefully help you from making the same mistakes and maybe save you an uncomfortable night.

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Les Caves- A club in a cave, it’s an experience.

Double Check last train times.

I spent the night in the Brussels train station because I check frequency of train assuming they went all night or until midnight.

Train Stations do not close.

With a ticket the police will not kick you out of the train station. I was approached by a man who said he was a taxi driver and that the station closed and I would be kicked out on the street. That was not the case.

Don’t bring purses into clubs or hold them.

While walking through a crowed club I was pickpocketed and they got everything in my purse without me noticing at all.

Paris: My Home Away From Home

Monday, August 5th, 2013

Written by: Jennifer Bullion

RSM, Jennifer Bullion 2

 

 

I visited my friend in Paris early in my trip and fell so in love with the city and people that I went back almost every weekend.

The bus systems in Europe make it really easy to get to other countries for cheap. By bus it was around $35 each way to get to Paris, but using Megabus you get to places for $12 but they only go to Amsterdam not Rotterdam. You can also get very cheap tickets for the train or Frya (high-speed train), the train is really comfortable and a lot quicker than buses.

 

RSM Housing

Monday, August 5th, 2013
RSM, Jennifer Bullion

This is the pond on the walk from the metro station to campus.

Written By: Jennifer Bullion

I stayed in the F – Building on campus; it was perfect for me because I did not have a roommate. I have never lived on my own so it was something I wanted to experience. The campus was under construction throughout the entire time I was there, but it wasn’t an inconvenience. There were about 12 students studying at RSM that came just for Spring Quarter, I was the only one staying in the F Building all the other students stayed in the Student Hotel or the other student housing. The other student houses are on a main road close to bars and I think it is easier to run into other students because they have community areas. The F – building did not have an area that made it easy to meet your neighbors. You can walk to the bars from campus but it’s a hike, if you take the tram it is only 3 or 4 stops. It is not very far, but since the last tram that stops at campus is around 1:15 am a lot of nights I did not go out, but I did not go to Erasmus to go to bars. Depending on the experience you want choose the right housing, it will probably make or break your trip.

Concluding Remarks

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

Written by: Evelyne Kolker

Now that I am back home in the U.S., with Rotterdam tucked away as a recent and cherished memory, I can start to really appreciate and pick out what I loved most about my study abroad experience.

barcelona

This is Barcelona, La Sagrada Familia.
Sarah Hann is in this photo too! And our friend Sandesh Menon.

Another simple but vitally important aspect of my study abroad was grocery shopping. The variety and freshness of fish in the country alone deserves applause. It was a pleasure picking up fruit in the Netherlands, all the variety of cheeses, and the outdoor market ever Tuesday in the center of Rotterdam surprised me with its size and selection.Some people may be surprised, but I’d like to pay a special tribute to the public transportation in the Netherlands. While across many big cities in Western European countries the transport is fantastic, the Netherlands especially has a well-thought, very convenient system. I think sustainable urban development is something that the Netherlands has excelled in and something that the U.S. needs to take note of. There are very few places in the U.S. where we have buses or trams arriving every few minutes, without delay, and at all hours of the day and night. The Netherlands blew me away with the new, clean trains that allowed me to travel all across the Netherlands.

By glancing at a map of Europe, you can easily see what Erasmus University itself advertises: Rotterdam’s location conveniently allows you to travel to many different countries, such as Belgium, France, and Germany. The highlight of my travel experiences me was three days in Barcelona, just a short flight away. We got to walk down the famous Las Ramblas, caught a game of the amazing FC Barcelona team, and enjoyed Gaudi architecture throughout the city. I visited 7 countries during my time studying in Rotterdam. Rotterdam was a fantastic jumping off point for so many different trips.

Ultimately, the history, the culture, and the lifestyle are the components that make both the Netherlands and Europe in general such a fantastic place to travel to and live in. I hope that everyone who wants to study abroad makes it a priority because there is nothing like traveling when you are young and free to do so. Throwing yourself out of your element really puts into perspective what is important to you in life, what you miss from back home, and what you crave in the future. Essentially, that’s what study abroad is all about. Thank you Rotterdam for the chance to learn, to wander, and to discover!

Musings About the Netherlands

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

By: Evelyne Kolker

I think that the best part of studying abroad is the chance to meander around another country, enjoy a new culture… When we had time to travel around, we wandered all around the Netherlands. My first day trip was to Delft, which is a smaller city to the northwest of Rotterdam.. Unlike Rotterdam, Delft remained intact after World War II, so offers the quintessential Dutch town feel.. There are beautiful canals throughout the city, beautiful old buildings, and a main town square with a church (called the New Church, yet dates back to the 14th century). The Delft Technical University also has a really cool library. Inside it has spiral stair cases, rows of books light up with a blue background, and a lots of places to sit and study. The library has a sloping roof covered with grass that’s great to lounge around on. It’s a delightful town to walk around in.

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Amsterdam is a huge city that offers an unbelievable variety of things to do. In comparison to Rotterdam, you definitely feel constantly surrounded by tourists. Amsterdam is massive and you can spend days just walking along canals, down streets with handsome buildings. The architecture rivals some of the best cities in Europe. It’s a breathtaking city and you can wander into the Royal Palace or some great museums or just wander in and out of little stores all across the city. One of my favorite experiences in Amsterdam was meeting up a with a family friend who has a Dutch girlfriend. The advantage of knowing someone from Amsterdam is that we ended up going to this little restaurant in the middle of nowhere, past the port of Amsterdam. It’s somewhere you would never know about unless someone takes you there. The restaurant is housed in a boat that used to ferry people across the water. The boat is now stationary and houses one of the best seafood restaurants I have ever been to. They serve only locally-grown, fresh food, and was the best way to try out all the different types of seafood Amsterdam has to offer.

Evelyn

We have also headed to little towns around the area. One day we went to The Hague, which has a lot of important government buildings. On a personal note, it has the M.C. Escher museum,

which for me was hands down one of the best things I got to see here in the Netherlands. Escher was a Dutch-born artist and has created some really amazing art work. We headed up to Leiden after looking at one of the famous tulip fields Keukenhof. We also headed to Utrecht and Gouda (yes, as in Gouda cheese;-p). Overall, the Netherlands has a lot of really great places to visit and see.

Hello from Rotterdam!

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

By: Evelyne Kolker, Foster Undergraduate

This is Evelyne Kolker, writing from Rotterdam in the Netherlands! I am studying here on a business exchange through UW at Erasmus University, Rotterdam School of Management (RSM).

I wanted to share a few of my favorite memories from here so far:

A major national holiday here in the Netherlands, Queen’s Day! This day is called Koninginnedag in Dutch. This holiday began in 1885 as a way to garner support for the Dutch monarchy and has become a national day of celebration and merriment here in Holland. This Queen’s Day was a particularly special experience because this is the last Queen’s Day ever. From now on, due to the coronation of King Willem-Alexander, the holiday will be called King’s DayJ

In action, Queen’s Day is a day when all of Holland dresses up in orange, the national color. Our group of friends joined the official ESN (Erasmus Student Network) boat trip in Amsterdam. We took a bus up to Amsterdam early in the morning. An entire bus full of college students dressed in orange. We then spent a few hours on a huge boat for 150 students gliding through the canals in Amsterdam. It was an amazing experience to pass people standing on bridges or on either side of a canal, cheering when we went buy. The overall atmosphere was really great, with the music blaring, everyone dancing and cheering; the entire city, the entire country celebrating.

Another fun thing to do is travel north to Keukenhof, which has rows and rows of tulips. Due to the cold spring we have been having, I ended up heading to Keukenhof on one of the last days it was open, because I kept waiting for a sunny day.. Here’s a photo of me with Phil, one of the exchange students who came from Erasmus University to UW earlier this fall.

Beyond the traditional experiences, it has been a lot of fun just being in the Netherlands. The university is around an area called Kralingen, which is considered one of the nicest and most expensive parts of Rotterdam. I like walking through the streets in this area, because it has some older buildings. Since Rotterdam was bombed during WWII, you have to travel to other cities to see older, “traditional” Dutch towns, but Rotterdam’s Kralingen area gives you a little of the feel of the older towns.

Another fun thing about living in the Netherlands is the sheer amount of bikes. I even noticed little bike garages, to keep the bikes from getting wet from the rain. There is nothing quite like seeing someone riding a bike, while smoking a cigarette and talking on their cellphone. This kind of multi-tasking while riding around is pretty typical and always amusing to see.

The RSM program itself provides an entirely different form of teaching. The approach around here is much more hands off; students are expected to study and learn a lot of the material on their own. Beyond the rigor of the courses, the fact that 40% of the IBA program here are from other countries, other than Holland, is absolutely impressive. It makes you really feel that we are living in a global age; many of the students have plans to live all over the world while working, from Hong Kong to Berlin to Toronto. Another perk of studies here at Erasmus is that every student in RSM is required to study abroad for a quarter or a semester in the fall of their 3rd and final year. I think that the program here really encourages students to explore the world, whether it is through the required study abroad or through the sheer diversity of students and professors.

 

With love from Rotterdam,

Evelyne

First Reflections on Studying in Holland

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

By: Radu Smintina, Foster Undergraduate

Hello there. I have been in Rotterdam for a little over a month now and reflecting on my experiences I must say I am surprised. There is SO much to tell, but alas space is limited and time, of the essence, so I will restrict my study abroad story to the most memorable experiences and observations for now.

When I first arrived in Rotterdam one of the things that struck me most was the sheer amount of diversity this city has to offer. I expected to be immersed in a sea of blond hair and blue eyes but, being a port city, there are all sorts of ethnicities here, mostly from Asian, African and other European cultures. The Rotterdam School of Management follows suit. There is a large international student population which is great to be a part of, not just on a business level but on a personal level as well. I have made many new and different friends and feel as though I have broadened my world view as a result of these friendships. On another note my palate is also thankful for all the cultural diversity for the Dutch lack, shall we say, creativity when it comes to food.

Another advantage of living in Rotterdam is that it is a fantastic hub for travel, being so close to many other wonderful cities. So far I have visited Barcelona, Bruges, Gent and Brussels in Belgium, Florence and Rome. However that is not to leave out all of the beautiful cities within Holland – Amsterdam, Leiden, Den Hauge and Rotterdam itself also has much to offer with its many canals, bridges and bi-weekly farmers markets.

Lastly I must address the infamous Queen’s Day which takes place every April 30th. It was a festival to rival all festivals as hundreds of thousands of people packed the city of Amsterdam. The streets were lined with venders and concerts and the canals were chock full of boats (and anything else that would float and support people). From dawn till dusk the city was alive and the most emphatic Queen’s Day troopers had started the festivities the night before in Den Hague. This was truly a memorable experience. Well I must leave you now, but will be sure to write again soon, take care!

Hellllooooo Rotterdam!

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

Hello everyone, I’m Jordan, a sophomore (senior standing) marketing/accounting major studying abroad in Rotterdam, which is 45 min. south of Amsterdam by train.  At first glance, Rotterdam doesn’t seem that special.  It doesn’t have the history, reputation, or glamour of London, Paris, Amsterdam, or Rome.  But now that I’ve spent a month living in this city, I couldn’t have asked for anything more.  Everyday life is great because I feel like I’ve had the true European experience, free from tourists. I buy my groceries at a huge outdoor market (ironically located in the Blaak neighborhood, making it the Blaak Market), I read at a park overlooking the Nieuwe Maas River and the famous Erasmus Bridge, and I take advantage of Rotterdam’s highly reputed nightlife.As much as we would all like studying abroad to be just about traveling, there is an academic component.  The Rotterdam School of Management is much like UW.  We have lectures a few times a week and tons and tons of group projects.  To be honest, with classes usually only three days a week, I’ve had a lot of time to get to know the city and the school emphasizes the whole exchange experience—meaning they promote both curricular and extra-curricular activities.  It seems like the school takes advantage of every opportunity to have social drinks or networking with drinks events.  To sum it up, the school doesn’t mind having a little fun.

But really, I wanted to travel and being in the Netherlands has been wonderful.  I arrived in Rotterdam a week before class started, so I spent my first weekend abroad in Belgium (Brussels and Antwerp) with one other exchange student, whom I met over facebook, and have since continued to travel with both international and Dutch students.  When we’re not going out, we like to plan future trips.  We’re going to Munich soon and northern Italy in a few weeks!

However, I’ve realized that I don’t need to leave the Netherlands to see some pretty amazing things.  This Saturday is Queensday, and they’re expecting over two million people to flood the streets in Amsterdam for the country’s biggest street party.  I’ll be heading up to Amsterdam with a group of friends and will be sure to let you know how it goes in my next blog post.

 

Wrapping up in Rotterdam

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

EmilyMy time in Rotterdam is coming to a close, and I’ll be leaving this lovely city in one week.  It’s hard to believe that I’ve been here for almost four months now!  I feel so privileged for having had the opportunity to not only study in The Netherlands but to also travel to so many places in Europe.  I truly didn’t imagine I’d cover so much ground during my time here.

A word for those of you considering an exchange with RSM:

My overall experience at the school itself was pretty positive.  I took a minor called “E-Marketing” that was very fascinating, and I believe relevant for all business students.  The course focused on marketing in the “new economy,” and spent most of the time examining the importance for businesses to adapt how they do business as the internet becomes more and more integrated into society.  The course composition was much like any class at Foster and included lectures, class discussions, group work, a major paper and an exam.  If you are thinking of doing your exchange during autumn quarter you will have the opportunity to take a minor (which is worth 15 ECTS).  I suggest that if you chose to take a minor, you also chose at least one other course to take.  I only took the one minor and found that I had a lot of extra time on my hands.  It might not sound like such a bad thing until all the people you know are busy with school work.

If you are looking for a highly academic environment with a lot of extra seminars, lectures and workshops to participate in outside of the classroom, then I suggest you look at other universities.  While there are some academic events to participate in they are few and far between and always cost extra.  There is an “academic” club called STAR which organizes events throughout the year.   Unfortunately, in order to actively participate in the club you must be staying longer than a quarter because of project timeframes.  On the other hand, if you are looking to attend a lot of parties then RSM is for you.  There are always school sponsored parties (sometimes the school even provides drinks) and weekly social drinks.  There is rarely a night when someone isn’t having some sort of party.  The school also organizes several trips outside of Rotterdam so that you get to know other cities in The Netherlands.Emily (1)

The Dutch have a “do-it-yourself” mentality.  That makes some things very difficult to accomplish.  If you come to RSM you will notice immediately that there isn’t much coordination between RSM and the rest of Erasmus University.  For example, in order to print you need a “print card,” which inconveniently cannot be your student card, and you must have a separate print card for every building you wish to print in.  So if you only want to have one print card you may find yourself taking several trips across campus.

Erasmus also does not have dormitories.  You’ll need to conduct a housing search on your own.  Erasmus refers students to a company that offers dorm style housing.  You’ll need to figure out what is best for you.  If you chose to go through this company your accommodations will be akin to standard student dorms and cost more than if you found housing on your own.  The plus side is that you would be living with a lot of other students so making friends would be very easy.  I chose to find housing on my own and am very happy with my situation.  I posted a message on a Facebook page for RSM students and was offered to sublet an apartment from a student who was leaving Rotterdam to do her own exchange.  My apartment is further away from the school (about 15 minutes by bike) but located in the Center of Rotterdam which is close to shopping, outdoor markets, restaurants, bars and a multitude of clubs.  I also pay about 150-250 Euros less than what other students pay.

If you are planning to do a lot of traveling during your exchange then Rotterdam is a great place to be because of its central location.  Since you are basically in the center of Europe you can go pretty much anywhere by train or a quick flight on one of Europe’s budget airlines.  I’ve been to Germany, Belgium, France, Czech Republic, Italy and Spain.

I hope this information proves useful for you in choosing where you want to go on your exchange.  If you have any other questions about RSM I’d be happy to answer them for you.  I’ve had an incredible time and have learned so much about the World!  Good luck in your own travels!

Update from Rotterdam

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009
Me on the Erasmusbrug (Erasmus Bridge)

Me on the Erasmusbrug (Erasmus Bridge)

I have been done with classes for a week now and can’t believe it.  It is crazy how fast time has flown by.  It feels like I just went on the integration trip where I met everyone in the exchange program for the first time.  Although I will be traveling for the next month, many people are already going home or leaving on their own travel adventures.  It will be hard to say goodbye to everyone but I will have lots of places to stay all around the world!

I returned from Berlin yesterday.  We were there for the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, which was really exciting.  I leave for Stockholm this week and after that will be traveling to Bergen, Prague and southern Spain.  I also hope to have a chance to see more of the Netherlands.  There are a lot of amazing cities in the Netherlands and they are easy to travel to since the country is so small.  Two weekends ago I went to Utrecht, which is the fourth largest city in the Netherlands.  Utrecht is very beautiful and similar to Amsterdam, but without all the tourists.

If you visit the Netherlands you have to try Stroopwafels.  Stroopwafels are thin Dutch waffle cookies with a syrup filling.  You can buy them pretty much everywhere but nothing beats a freshly made one!

I am really going to miss everyone in my exchange program, as well as living abroad. Nothing can compare to the experiences and people I have met.  At least with the internet and facebook it will be easier to keep in touch with everyone.

International Group on my 21st Birthday

International Group on my 21st Birthday