Interview with Maria Palazón Simón, Student ambassador Bachelor European Studies 2023-2024

Maria is a first year student European Studies from Spain

Why did you choose to study European Studies in Maastricht?
“I took a gap year after high school, so I had plenty of time to think about what I wanted to study. I love history, politics, and languages. I wanted something that combined all these things. And I wanted to study in a very international environment. That’s why I chose to study in Maastricht.

“In my programme there are many nationalities in class. That way, I get to know many perspectives and opinions. The PBL method at UM is new to me. In high school the teaching method focuses much on memorizing facts, and I want to develop interpersonal and communication skills. PBL is a great method to develop these skills. In the future I would like to work in one of the EU institutions, so being able to communicate with people from various background will be very important.

How is living in Maastricht for you?
“Before I came here, I was excited but also a bit scared. I thought it was going to be hard to make friends, but actually it was quite easy! Me and my future classmates were already connected by FASoS in a WhatsApp group, so we could share tips and easily meet up in Maastricht. And Maastricht is a good student city. There is lots to do and there a lot of nice cafés. I love running and there are many nice parks to do that. I also started to learn Dutch. It’s easy to get around in English here, but I want to be part of the culture and that will be easier when I know the language.”

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
“I would love to do an internship during my studies, to get to know the job market and how people work in several places. My main goal would be to work in the EU Commission or the EU parliament. My motivation to study European Studies is that I would like to contribute to a union of countries that work on the same goal. And I think that the young generation should be in the lead of that!”

October 2023