Erasmus + Success Stories

Sugiyama KenichiroDepartment of CardioIncoming StudentFaculty of MedicineHiroshima University

Sugiyama's impressions from Medical University Sofia


Erasmus+ Period: 05/10/2017 – 04/01/2018

Academic point of view: Erasmus+ mobility Programme was the first student exchange program that I attended and it has been a great experience! At the Medical University – Sofia the clinical practice and lectures are combined together, so I was able to use both textbooks and experience from bedside teaching at the same time. The practice was done in small groups, which made each study very intensive and valuable. In Japan, clinical practices are done after we finish all the lectures and tests, so the clinical practice was something very fresh and also satisfying. Being able to practice and communicate with real patients is special and it was a precious experience which could only be gained through this mobility program.

In addition, from this program I learned the difference in the medical systems and the situation of the medical aspect of the country. Learning different techniques, different medical systems and understanding the local medical situations could only be done through experiencing and learning in that country. I believe the study and the experience through this mobility program will be a big advantage for me.

Personal experience: Comparing to Japan, students at the Medical University – Sofia are diverse in nationality. I had many opportunities to discuss about medical problems, economics, culture and other topics with the students. It gave me a greater understanding of other countries and I also learned the perspective of how Japan looked in other peoples ‘eyes. It was great to know how my country is seen from the outside. As a studying group I have learned how to be more active instead of being passive. Studying in a different environment made me more flexible, self-confident, provoked me think in a different prospective.

Another important moment is that every program included in this cycle is done in English. There are many students from different countries such as Italy, Germany, Greece, etc., and everyone can communicate with each other using English as a common language. By communicating and discussing with different people from different countries, I could understand not only the medical skills, but also the different culture and standards.

Personal experience: For me, this Erasmus+ Programme was the best opportunity to enhance my personal experience.

First of all, I have bettered my English communicating skills. In the modern society, the use of an international language becomes more and more important for us and our communication. Since I haven’t use English in my country, it was hard at first to tell other people what I want to advocate during the discussion. But in a few months, I was gradually able to give my opinion using English. This was a great progress for me.

Secondly, it is about “activeness”. During the classes, I found out that many people have confidence about what they know and think, whether it is correct or not. I learned that it is important to make clear statements and stay at firm positions for the successful communication. The Erasmus+ Programme gave me the chance to become more self-confident in stating my opinion before others.