Aviation Academy

Roy van Poppelen - Minor Estonia

Posted at: 14 Mar 2022

Now that we are allowed to travel again, you also see our students spreading their wings abroad. Roy van Poppelen is one of them! Read here how he is doing in Estonia.

Why did you do this minor in Estonia?

While studying at home in the Netherlands in 2020, I felt the need to travel again. Just for fun, I looked at the options for a minor abroad, and this gradually evolved into a concrete plan.

When I looked in the list of partner schools of the HvA, the school in Estonia immediately drew my attention. I love adventurous and unknown destinations, and since Estonia is unknown territory for most people, this seemed like a nice challenge. Besides, the aviation academy in Tartu is also a very good aviation school.

How do you like it there?

I like Estonia very much! A beautiful country, it is a mix of Eastern Europe & Scandinavia. The Estonian Aviation Academy is a very good school, with all facilities that a student needs (even a Fitness and sauna ). The younger people speak English well, but the older ones hardly at all. This sometimes causes adventurous situations, where I have to find a solution myself with some learned Estonian phrases and sign language. I've noticed that even the smallest things can be an adventure abroad.

Are you with several students from Aviation Academy there or alone?

I am the only student here from the HvA (and almost the only Dutch person). This was quite exciting at first, but I soon felt at home. But apart from the Estonians, there are three other international fellow students, one Polish and two from Belgium. Because Tartu is a real student city, there are also many (Erasmus) students from other study programmes. I have already met many others from all over the world. Tartu is a small city and therefore you quickly meet familiar people, very different from Amsterdam.

What are the activities you do besides your minor?

Estonia has surprisingly much to offer. There are very beautiful nature parks (50% of the country is forest), and also in terms of remnants of the Soviet Union, there is a lot to discover here. The local ESN (European Student Network) organises many activities, from hiking in the forest to a trip to Finnish Lapland and from karaoke nights to parties in one of the many pubs. So there are plenty of activities to fill your free time.

Would you recommend it to other students?

I would definitely recommend other students to do a minor abroad. Don't be afraid and take that step! The international contacts you make are worth their weight in gold, and they give you a new perspective on the world. Take part in the activities of the ESN as much as you can, and be open to new things. I went alone to a country I hardly knew, but I am having a great time here and every day is a new adventure!

Are you one of our students, are you abroad and would you like to write about it? Then mail us at aviation.academy@hva.nl