Written by: 
Cristian Pașka

One Step Closer to Erasmus+

One Step Closer to Erasmus+ was a project implemented between September 2021 and February 2022 by Erasmus Student Network (ESN) Romania and co-funded by the Erasmus Students and Alumni Alliance (ESAA) through a non-reimbursable financing of 6380 €. The aim of the project was to promote Erasmus+ mobility programmes and the European Solidarity Corps among young people in rural and small urban areas.


How did we set out to do this?

We organized a training event attended by 43 young people (network volunteers and international students). Originally planned for November, the event was rescheduled, amid restrictions imposed by authorities to limit the spread of Coronavirus, for January. The organizing team and the trainers proved to be extremely adaptable, always finding solutions to the problems that arose, successfully coping with the challenges. Between January 20th and 23rd, at Ibis Bucharest Politehnica Hotel, the young people selected to participate in this event had the opportunity to learn more about the mobility programs, and in the next period they had to organize sessions in schools in rural and small urban areas, thus becoming ambassadors of the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps programmes.

The intercultural dimension of the event created a space for dialogue, facilitating the creation of bondings between participants from 14 countries, from 3 continents. The event was attended by young volunteers from ESN Romania and ESN Bulgaria, as well as international students from Somalia, Nigeria, Egypt, Yemen, Ghana, Turkmenistan, Palestine, Turkey, Italy, France and Greece hosted by Romanian universities.

The event was also an inclusive one, both from the perspective of the activities carried out, as well as the chosen location, allowing the participation of  a member of ESN Romania with disabilities that require constant support and a permanent companion.


How did it all go?

On the first day of the event, the participants had various activities through which they could get to know each other better. The next day had as objectives: to develop the participants' knowledge of the mobilities, the way to finance them and the connection with the European Union institutions, the organization of Erasmus-in-School activities, but also the introduction in non-formal education

This event represented a good opportunity for ESN Romania and ANPCDEFP to collaborate, therefore, two representatives of the departments of the Institution for Higher Education (Erasmus+) and the European Solidarity Corps participated on the first day of the event, providing information on the two programmes of interest in an interactive manner. At the end of the day, the participants learned how to promote the two programmes through storytelling of personal mobility experiences.

On the third day of training, the participants were divided into smaller groups and invited to a session on Intercultural Dialogue. They were asked to analyze the methods and activities carried out within the workshops for a better understanding of the non-formal methodology of education.  What followed took the participants out of their comfort zone. Thus, for the next part of the day, but also for Sunday, they were grouped in teams of three people each and were instructed to prepare a 40-45-minute workshop that would include two themes: intercultural dialogue and international mobility programmes. In the end, they proved their skills acquired during the training, successfully coping with the challenge they received. Asked how they would describe the experience of the  event in one word, they mentioned: "friendly", "educational", "fun", "wonderful", "well organized", "inspirational", " connection", "intercultural" etc.

Once back home, the 43 young people got to work and organized 14 sessions to promote mobility in schools in rural and small urban areas. A total of 535 students were motivated by personal stories to participate in a mobility, regardless of its type.

Written by: 
Cristian Pașka

League of Romanian Students Abroad Gala - Interview with Roxana Fărcaș

In April we had the opportunity to participate in the League of Romanian Students Abroad Gala. The LSRS Gala awards, based on an open competition, students and graduates from the Romanian diaspora, with the purpose of recognizing their academic and extracurricular performances, one special category being for the Erasmus Student of the Year.

We talked to Roxana Fărcaș, a student at the "George Emil Palade" University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology in Târgu Mureș, a finalist in the competition.


1. How did you find out about Erasmus+?

Participation in the Erasmus+ programme has been an old wish since my high school years.  I listened with curiosity to the experiences of my older colleagues and I decided to take full advantage   when the opportunity arose. I responded to my promise by participating in every Erasmus+ opportunity I had access to.


2. What motivated you to go into mobility?

 I've always been motivated by the desire to do more, to be more and to understand more. This will lead me to France, looking for a new culture, new experiences and new information in my process of understanding medicine.


3. How would you describe the experience in a word?

It's selfish to describe such a vast experience so briefly.  For me, it was a challenging experience day in and day out, in various forms.


4. What did you like the most about this experience?

The possibility of being in a prestigious university center, in state-of-the-art operating rooms, seeing patients with pathologies I only read about in books, was eye-opening and the most important opportunity for me.


5. How does this experience help you?

The Erasmus experience is a complex one, and it is truly a life lesson. It helped me discover and refine my skills. It gave me the courage to look for new opportunities and fight for them.  Cultural exchange, or rather cultural shock, helped me to have another level of empathy in the process of understanding the needs of others.  This has developed my ability to integrate, to be able to belong to the group or community I have entered. I have acquired vast skills, directly proportional to the complexity of the experience.


6. Why should young people participate in Erasmus+ mobilities?

I encourage every student to give themselves a chance and take advantage of the new universe offered to them through the Erasmus experience.  Two paragraphs cannot sum up all the reasons that would convince a young person to leave their comfort at home, but they can at least intrigue them to be curious about what they would be able to live. I hope you have the courage to experience the most challenging experience of your university life.


7. A piece of advice you would give to a student interested in participating in mobility.

I suggest that every student listen to their instincts and not give up on something they truly believe in, regardless of obstacles or difficulties. Erasmus can be a great story, for those who have the courage to live it.


8. How did you find out about the Erasmus Student of the Year award offered by LSRS?

I found out on social media, following the premiere of several students from my faculty.


Written by: 
Tudor Țoțovînă

Erasmus mode activated! Destination: Romania

First of all, congratulations on choosing Romania as a destination for your Erasmus. We're excited to have you as an Erasmus student, to see for yourself how it is to live in Romania.

For COVID information and updates, please see our home page article about it and especially the links mentioned there.


Documents and all that blah-blah

Let's start with your documents, make sure you have all your needed documents (the IRO sent you a list) and remember to make some copies of them before leaving your country and try to have your passport or ID and flight details handy and ready to use.

If it's your first time flying, be sure to read all the information before boarding (such as luggage weight limit, liquid limitations for shampoos and personal hygiene stuff and so on) and relax, enjoy the flight.

When reaching Romania, you should know that most of the information in Airports is in English and perhaps in other languages. If you’d need further assistance, try asking your local section and perhaps even your Buddy. 


Your home for the next few months

No matter the town/university you chose, you should be aware that the weather in Romania is a bit colder, even in the upcoming months of March or even April. The geography of Romania varies a lot - from mountain ranges to windy seaside to the “concrete jungle”. So you should pack accordingly, right?

Make sure you come with a pretty-big troller bringing with you clothes for all seasons.You’d think winter in April is a myth, a legend..but Romania would like to differ. If you happen to forget your favourite outfit, fear not, you can use the services of one of our partners, Eurosender, and have it shipped right at your door! 

Take your most comfortable shoes as you’ll probably be exploring a lot of our beautiful country but don’t forget the fancy ones, too, since our bars or clubs will blow your mind!

Your baggage should also fit some snacks or treats from your home, in case you’d like to impress your fellow Erasmus students or the locals. (one of the events ESN is organising is “International Dinner” where you can showcase food/treats from your local country - wink wink)


Let’s get wild now

Research a bit about our country and try to make a Check-list of places you’d like to visit, or activities you’d like to do here.

You could read our other blog articles: Folklore-inspired Romanian customs in modern days, Halloween in Transylvania 2019 - Discover Romania with exchange students or read about the National Projects ESN Romania will host in the upcoming semester: International Erasmus Games - Romanian National Phase and Escape to Vama Veche or who knows, if you’re here in October you should definitely check out Halloween in Transylvania.

Ah, just remembered something. You should keep in mind that the power plugs and sockets are type “F” and its standard voltage is 230V while the frequency is 50Hz.

With all that said, have fun, live and learn!

Picture What it means to be Eramsus
Written by: 
Alexandra Cojocaru

What it means to be Eramsus

Ever wonder what it actually means to be Erasmus? Everyone around you seems to be talking about the Erasmus+ Program? Or maybe you are curious about the great unknown and wish to go on an adventure? Bare with me, you might just get the answers you are looking for.

The time you spend on your Erasmus can be described in many different ways. But I will just put it in some simple words, the Erasmus experience is a time to discover yourself, other cultures, traditions, languages, cities, people, food, customs.

Although Erasmus is and will probably be one of the best times of your life, one must proceed with caution, as it may not always be an easy road. Many challenges may follow, from filling in the documents required by each institution, moving to a new country, understanding a new culture, and learn how to fit in. But I dare you to take my word and be brave, as it is one of the most rewarding experiences a young adult can go through.

You will learn that you are more though than you ever thought to be, you will get to see the world through different lenses, widen your horizons, make beautiful friendships with people all over the world, and master new skills.

"They say that Erasmus is not just a year in your life - but your life in one year."

Getting to live abroad, starting as a stranger, to slowly at the end of the 6 to 12 months of your mobility become a local, knowing all the best spots in town, be it for the best food, view or the most popular place to hang out.

Traveling and living abroad is great, but I think we missed out on one important detail, and that is a new educational environment: a new university, new professors, and subjects your university might not offer that you can now finally take. And let’s not forget your new colleagues, understanding and experiencing another educational system, which might be similar or completely different to what you are used to.

The whole experience will be a rollercoaster of emotions and adventures. By the end, when the moment you so deeply wanted to avoid arrives, your whole world will be completely different. You will have changed in ways unknown to you at the beginning, you will have a group of wonderful friends you cannot imagine living without and luggage full of memories and souvenirs to take back home.

The highest form of bliss is living with a certain degree of folly.” - Desiderius Erasmus

Panic, what should I pack?
Written by: 
Alexandra Cojocaru

Panic, what should I pack?

Congrats! If you are the lucky one going on Erasmus+ mobility, through all the excitement going on for you, you must for sure have some concerns about your departure. We all know uncertainty can be scary, but there is also beauty in every new beginning. Now, to help you out a little, here are a few things that might help with your departure.

Do your research!

This is a very important point in case you are not too adventurous and don’t like to explore things first-hand. Research can help you plan your travels there and ease up the uncertainty.

For instance, how do you get from the airport to the accommodation, what’s the local currency, is there a time zone difference, maybe even try to get accustomed to the local language before, could be some of the topics to cover.

Lists, lists, lists

We all love a good list, so here are some suggestions of what you could do:
  • What should you pack in your suitcase?
  • Best places to eat in town?
  • Are there any tourist attractions you would like to see while you are there?
  • What about food, there sure is a lot of traditional food for you to try.
  • Any particular cultural aspects you would like to discover?
  • Where would you like to travel from your mobility destination?

Find your local ESN section

If you are reading this article, you might already know what ESN is/does. For those of you who don’t, let’s recap really quick: Erasmus Student Network (ESN) is the biggest student association in Europe.

ESN works for the creation of a more mobile and flexible education environment by supporting and developing student exchanges on different levels, as well as providing an intercultural experience also to those students who cannot access a period abroad (“internationalization at home”), all under the principle of students helping students.

They can help with accommodation, provide the opportunity to get a buddy (local student to show you around) and will be the people who will enrich your mobility experience through their support and organised events.

Aaaand, one last checklist of things you should grab with you:


  • Openness
  • Good vibes
  • Curiosity
  • Passport/ ID and money
  • All necessary documents for your mobility
  • Camera (you will definitely want to take lots of pictures)
  • your lists (remember, we talked about them earlier)

Feel free to continue customizing the checklist. Now, enough chit chat, your adventure is about to begin. Enjoy!

The world is yours to conquer.