Erasmus Experience: Ben Thain - Bridgwater & Taunton College

Trainer Assessor, Ben Thain took up the opportunity to partake in the Erasmus Programme twice – a benefit all Bridgwater & Taunton College staff have access to.

If I had to sum up Erasmus in one sentence it would be a European sharing of good practise that brings people together. It was incredibly rewarding and I feel privileged to have got to experience the Erasmus programme.

Ben’s first visited Dordrecht College in The Netherlands with the Erasmus Programme, headed up by Jon Harding and Victoria Thompson. 2 students travelled with Ben to learn how an Erasmus partner develops web based platforms on word press.

In addition to being great for professional development, Ben expressed how culturally rewarding his Erasmus experience was.

I loved how it was a cultural exchange, we were all learning about each other constantly and I feel like I learnt so much in my short time away! It is such a great way to meet new people and make connections!

Inspired by his first trip, Ben committed himself to a second Erasmus project, but this time it was a staff-only experience to visit Aarhus Technology College in Denmark.

Aarhus College were helping to build an E-learning platform mainly focused around apprenticeships. This platform was mainly going to be used in Greece to help them easily train apprentices. Ben got to contribute to this project and his extensive knowledge surrounding apprentice training was invaluable during the development process.

I really enjoyed developing this platform with the College and all the members in the team, web development is a huge passion of mine and I felt I got to utilise my skills hugely.

One of Ben’s favourite parts of the entire trip was meeting the students at Aarhus College. He got to learn about their experience at the College and the social culture in Denmark, for example they have an excellent apprenticeship scheme in Denmark that dramatically reduces unemployment rates.

I would recommend Erasmus to everyone, it is such a rewarding experience and you gain so much from it! You’ve got to go for it!

Ben thoroughly enjoyed his Erasmus experience and is hoping to take part in his third Erasmus programme being planned in Athens, Greece.

The main thing that I took away from the entire experience is how similar we all are. It was eye opening to see that really we all have the same little problems and are all going through the same thing and are just doing our best. It felt like there was such a sense of community and togetherness throughout the entire experience, I loved that!

 

To find out more about Bridgwater & Taunton College’s Erasmus Programme and how to take part, click here.

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