younG EnterpreNeurs In eUropean Schools

 Erasmus + Program
 Five European project schools
 A great team,
 full of energy and enthusiasm
 We have all agreed
 on a great vision of future cooperation
 We are 
 younG EnterpreNeurs In eUropean Schools

Myjava - info

            For the past two years, high schools from Greece, Denmark, Finland, Italy and Slovakia have been cooperating on a large-scale Erasmus+ project – GENIUS – young entrepreneurs in European countries. The goal of this project was to give young people an opportunity to suggest and develop their business idea, which they presented on a mobility in one of the countries which were a part of the project. Furthermore, the project helped decrease the gap between cultures and lead students to openness and tolerance.

            I believe I am speaking for all of the participants if I say that it’s been quite a ride. Each of the five mobilities brought unique experiences, unforgettable moments and gave rise to many friendships. We got to discover new countries, test our sense of responsibility and venture beyond the point of our comfort zone. The project was finally concluded in Slovakia and I’d like to share this experience as one of the Slovak participants.


            It’s time to say goodbye once again and I am far more sentimental than I expected to be at the beginning of this week – this is the very end of the project. Although it seemed the week was going to be endless, it flashed past with the speed of lightning and now I just vainly wish to repeat the most memorable moments. There are some regrets – more than anything I regret that I didn’t get to know more of the people that are just getting on the bus. Also, I wish I had just stopped every now and then and enjoyed the moment instead of rushing all the time to see more, do more, experience more…

            This Erasmus has been really special. It was the first one I spent in Slovakia and although I didn’t get to visit a new country, several countries visited my own. What is more, I got an entirely new perspective on the places I encounter every day. As I like to say, when you spend a week abroad, apart from a new culture, you really get to know yourself. When foreigners visit you, you discover things about your own country - things you wouldn’t have noticed otherwise – that is really unique about Erasmus.

            To be a host seemed like quite a challenge at first, but to be honest, I really enjoyed it. I learned that you can make breakfast and lunch for school in about ten minutes, that your guest needs an understanding friend, rather than a caring host, that it doesn’t really matter where you are and what you are doing, as long as there is good company (I know, cliché) and also, how my mum must feel when I leave for school and the flat remains empty.

            The main objective of the Slovak mobility, just like all the others, was to give young people an opportunity to see what it’s like to start their own business. I’ve seen innovative ideas like a machine that recycles plastic cups, an organization that allows tourists to have their lunch with local families or an agency that provides professional guides for solo travellers. I’ve seen young people try to make the world a better, more pleasant and more friendly place. What I haven’t seen is the greed and obsession with money that is often connected with business and entrepreneurship.

            But once the business was over with, it was time to have fun! We started slow – after a guided tour around our School and the city of Myjava, the Slovak students held a traditional barbecue in the nature with bonfire and sausages on wooden sticks (and luckily without mosquitoes).

            The organizers of this mobility made sure that our foreign guests get to experience the best that Slovakia has to offer. So we embarked on a trip to the Tatra mountains. Many of the places we visited were new even for many Slovak participants. We struggled our way through Jánošíkove diery, got some rest at the aquapark Tatralandia and explored Belianska cave the following day. Then, following a hike to Popradské pleso we finished this breathtaking adventure with a spooky guided tour around Bojnice castle in the evening. There, the enthusiastic guide accompanied by occasional ghost appearances led us through the history of the castle in the most entertaining and interesting way. Needless to say we were all tired after the trip, but it was far from over!

            The following day we had an excursion to Adam, an agricultural guest-house where we learned about the many ways farming can and has to be improved and innovated these days. Upon return were our guests left at mercy of the girls from dance group Kopaničiar, who taught them some traditional Slovak dances.

            The last day of the project was devoted to sports at the school gym, where everybody kept moving. Volleyball, table tennis, badminton, climbing – you name it! Shout-out to the Italians for their impressive performances at climbing, which they had reportedly never tried before.

            These are all mere excerpts from what we got to experience during the official program. Beside these, there were also trips and activities organized by the hosting families and students to make sure that their guest’s experience of Slovakia is really special.

            Then at the farewell dinner we could really feel that the end was nigh. Everybody had packed, the organizers gave moving speeches and we clapped. What else was left to do? Well, there was one thing. There’s no better way to spend the last moments together than on the dance floor!

            Now the bus is leaving. We’re waving, the eyes glimmering with tears are watching the bus leave. “We’ll see each other again,” we told each other. Well, let’s just hope we weren’t lying…