Hi, my name is Rachel Renninger, and I am a junior at the Foster School of Business but am currently studying at RSM Erasmus University in the Netherlands. I have already been in Rotterdam a little over a month now and time is flying by! I have made friends with people from all over the world and am truly having an international experience.
The university put on a two day integration trip the weekend before classes started, which was a great way to meet everyone in the program. I choose to live at Casa Erasmus, one of the student buildings and am very glad I did. Although some students found nicer places that were less expensive it is great to be around other students and only have a 10 minute walk to campus and is close to downtown as well.
One of the reasons why I chose to study in Rotterdam was because of its excellent location. It is very easy to travel to other countries in Europe from Rotterdam and I have already been to Belgium, Italy, and Germany and am going to London in a couple weeks. Pretty much everyone in the Netherlands speaks English, which makes it very easy to get around. The Dutch are also some of the nicest and friendliest people I have met.
I chose to take a minor while studying at RSM, which is 15 ECTS credits. The minor I chose was Principles of Negotiation. I only have class Tuesdays and Thursdays for 3 hours, which is very nice as it gives me time to travel to other cities in Europe. There are only about 18 students in my class which is really nice, and there are three professors teaching during the trimester. My grade for the class is based on a reflection journal of my experiences in class and a final paper on a negotiation topic of my choice. So far I have not found my experiences in the classroom all that different from at Foster.
Going on exchange can definitely be overwhelming at times but I strongly recommend it to everyone. I have had an amazing time so far, and it has been the best decision I have made while at UW.