Written by Anastasia Serfioti
Student years are considered to be some of the best in our lives. This is because it is the time to live and do everything you ever wanted: travel, see, learn, listen, admire, and share.
This journey commences when you decide where you’re going for your studies, and in my case, the place that captured me the most and continues to do so is the South of France.
- The university of my choice
Growing up in Greece, I always combined good time with good weather, good friends, and partying. So, when I had to decide where I was going to go to study, France instantly was at the top of my list; not only because of the great temperate climate, the gastronomy, the touristic attractions, the Mediterranean mentality (and the language, as I do speak French), but also because of the excellent educational institutions that cater for all tastes and orientations.
France is a country that balances technological innovation and cultural tradition. It is a place where everything can be put in practice, and, taking that into consideration, I decided to apply (and fortunately got admitted) at the Aix Marseille University, the biggest university in France.
The French South has always been renowned for the high-level education it offers, and, living and being educated here for about a year now, I feel that this distinction is more than truthful.
The university is located in the region of Provence, that is famous for its lavender extracts, its specialités, its architecture, its eye-capturing landscapes and nature, its soirées, and, of course, its people.
Provence and Aix-en-Provence, to be more precise, since this is where I am staying, are truly magical.
- The everyday life
Life in Provence is delightful, but there are always some disadvantages.
For starters, if somebody doesn’t speak the language, it can increase the already existing difficulties with the paperwork.
Also, when it comes to apartment hunting, as there are too many students and everybody wants to live in the city centre, close to the bars, restaurants and cafés (that are multiplied every year, since more students come here to study), all the good apartments are taken very quickly or they are very pricy. Aix-en-Provence, for example, is considered to be a rather expensive town, and the rents can be a lot higher than anticipated, for such a small place.
On the other hand, the supermarkets are very well equipped, with everything you might think you need, and the prices are rather low, compared to the restaurants, where the prices are a lot higher.
Also, the public transportation system functions really well, but most of the time there isn’t a need to use it, since everything can be reached by foot in 20 minutes, max.
Student life is great, no matter where you are, but it is the small everyday things that make the difference between having a good time and having a blast.
And, so far, student life has been even greater than I imagined and dreamed of. I took some good decisions, that eventually suited me perfectly, and I really hope that one day everyone can say the same about the place they studied.