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ON AN ERASMUS SCHOLARSHIP Interview with Lenka Kohutova, Klaudia Andraškova, and Jana Čederlova, 23-year-old students from Slovakia, on an Erasmus Scholarship at the Jagiellonian University Institute of Geography and Spatial Management □ “What do you think of Poland and the Poles?” ■ Lenka: “I like Poland and the people of Poland. It’s a very beautiful country and the people are really nice.” □ “Have you noticed any cultural differences between Poland and Slovakia?”

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■ Lenka: “Not really. These countries are very close to each other, so the differences can’t be big.” □ “How do you like to spend your free time?” ■ Lenka: “Sightseeing in the city, shopping, and admiring the countryside. Kraków’s a historic place, there are a lot of things to do. We’ll be going to the Opera to see a performance by the Moscow Ballet.” □ “How do you find studying here?” ■ Lenka: “I like it very much. It’s very different from Slovakia. Classes are much better in Poland. I especially like those on the principles of teaching. We’re very impressed by the University campus. Everything’s so modern! At home in Slovakia things still smack of Communism!” ■ Klaudia: “But here it’s like America!” ■ Lenka: “Though there is one drawback. Lunch on the campus could be cheaper.” ■ Jana: “Our friends told us that the Erasmus would be easy, that we wouldn’t have to work very hard. But it’s not true! Our tutors are very nice, but they’re rigorous. We have to give presentations and write essays, like all the other students.” □ “What made you choose Poland? Was it a random choice?” ■ Lenka: “To a certain extent, yes. I knew Kraków was a beautiful city, and everyone I told I was going to Kraków said I’d be pleased I chose it. And that’s what has happened.” □ “Would you like to learn Polish?”

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alma mater No. 166

Enthusiastic students from Slovakia

■ Klaudia: “Yes, very much. But unfortunately the money we get from our university for the scholarship is not enough for a language course.” □ “Do you think your stay in Kraków will help you get a job when you return to Slovakia?” ■ Klaudia: “Yes, I think it may. At any rate it’ll be a good point on our CVs. Employers will see that we’ve done more than just study, we’ve been to new places and we’re not afraid of new challenges.” ■ Lenka: “I hope so, especially as I’m brushing up my English.” □ “Is there anything that has surprised you about Poles?” ■ Klaudia: “I’m a bit surprised that whenever I say ‘dobrý deň,’ Polish people seem to get a bit nervous and they answer in English. But why? After all, we understand each other perfectly well!” □ “Janka, do you want to add anything?” ■ Jana: “Yes, well, everything’s going well. Everything’s fine.”

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Alma mater 166  

Alma Mater 166

Alma mater 166  

Alma Mater 166

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