Why I took part in an exchange program
Aljaž Planinšek loves travelling and getting to know new cultures. That's why he took part in the exchange programme at FH JOANNEUM. Photo: Private

Why I took part in an exchange programme

Iryna Lukashuk ,

Every semester we open our doors to students from all over the world. Although the year 2020 brought us a whole set of different challenges, we were still glad to support our international students in their desire to gain international experience. Aljaž Planinšek, an exchange student from Slovenia, who’s studying the Global Business Programme at FH JOANNEUM this semester, talks about his experience of studying in Graz.

Why did you decide to do an exchange semester?

Because I think it is an amazing experience from which you can benefit a lot. You get to know the language, the people, the culture, and many more interesting things. What I also find fascinating is that you get to find out about so many different learning processes which can help you a lot in your career, not to mention the knowledge that you gain.

Why did you choose FH JOANNEUM as your exchange university?

After doing a little research I discovered that Graz is a city with a large student population. It is also a very nice city! Then I got in contact with one of the students who had already studied at FH JOANNEUM and he highly recommended it to me. I found out that the faculty has a good reputation and gives you a lot of useful knowledge. So it was not hard to decide to come here.

What do you enjoy about studying at FH JOANNEUM?

The Covid-19 restrictions do not allow us to have classes at the university, and so, unfortunately, we cannot experience the usual study atmosphere. But even so, the professors are doing their best to give us the best possible experience and help us to learn. I admire the teaching method at FH JOANNEUM because all the theory we are taught is based on actual work, which makes it easier to understand and use in real life.

What are the biggest challenges and obstacles during your time abroad?

At first, I thought the biggest challenge would be getting to know people, but after a few days it appeared to be how to start focusing on my studies, because we were having such a great time together! But once the lectures began, getting down to studying was not a problem. Now the biggest challenge was the language. Covid-19 restrictions are no longer a challenge anymore and have become more of a routine. I think everyone expected some new regulations.

What have been your biggest learnings during your time abroad?

I would say that I gained a lot of useful knowledge from the classes themselves which will come in handy in my future career. Plus, you learn a lot about life itself. You are far from home and have to do everything by yourself.

The three words you associate with the students here are ...

Funny, helpful, and very kind.

The three words you associate with the lecturers and professors here are ...

Open minded, experienced, and very welcoming.

The three words you associate with your exchange semester here are ...

Amazing, adventurous, educational.

What would you tell students who want to take part in an exchange programme?

If you have any doubts whether to go or not, leave those doubts at home and do a semester abroad! You will have an amazing time and meet many new and different people. The whole experience is hugely beneficial in every aspect. I highly recommend it!


Aljaž Planinšek is on the Global Business Program. It provides incoming students with a wide variety of seminars and lectures in the field of International Business, taught by distinguished international faculty members.