Oliver in Spain: Education

It has been a little while since I’ve posted here, but I have nothing but good things to report. Last week I continued my weekend travel and went to Munich to celebrate Oktoberfest. I even had the pleasure of seeing a handful of UR students that I did not expect to see. Munich is a pretty special city and I was excited at the opportunity to work on my German, or lack there of.

With friends at Oktoberfest

With friends at Oktoberfest in Munich

I want to focus this post on a the education/academics of Spain because it is one of the areas that differs tremendously from that of the US. After a month in Valencia, it becomes pretty easy to pick up on patterns. One of these patterns is seeing my 21 year old host brother at home regularly. In the United States a 21 year old would be at his or her University, living in a dorm and studying every day. In Spain, it is common for students to stay with their family and be a part time student. Another point of interest here is what comes post graduation. I am lucky enough to attend UR and be given a more than 90% chance that I will have a job lined up after college. The students here are not as lucky. For men and women 25 years and younger, the unemployment rate is over 55%. Compare that with our number hovering around 12% and you can see the difference. It is highly unlikely that a student will have a job coming out of college so they just carry on and get their masters.

This might have seen like more of a report than a blog post but these are the things that are visible in my day to day life. I go to school right across the street from the University of Valencia and I can’t help but feel sorry for the students I see.

I’ve decided to keep this one short as my fall break is upon me and I am two hours away from boarding a flight to Paris. Fall break plans include Paris, Berlin, Prague, and Amsterdam so I will have a lot to write about when I get back. I’ll keep the next one focused on travel!

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