We have a new intern here at International Newcastle through the Erasmus Exchange programme and for the next 4 months she’ll be blogging about her experiences of living and working in Newcastle. Over to you Bianca!

Howdy everyone! My name is Bianca Pangalila, but you can call me Bianca. I am a 3rd year Business Management and Marketing student from Belgium, but I come originally from Indonesia.

On 12th of February, I am starting my internship at International Newcastle under the Erasmus exchange programme for the next 4 months. Exciting, isn’t it? That is also the reason why I will write a regular blog post – every 2 weeks, about my work experience at International Newcastle.

Not only work experience, I will share with you my travel experience as I will be visiting tourist and popular locations around Newcastle and its neighbouring cities. So, visit International Newcastle blog every 2 weeks!

WEEK 1

My plane took off from Schiphol International Airport at 08.20 AM and arrived swiftly at 08.20 AM local time. My journey to Newcastle went smoothly and I was greeted by a sunny albeit cold Friday morning. Thank goodness for my boyfriend who went with me and helped me carrying two heavy luggage’s from Amsterdam to my small and comfy room in Newcastle . What would I do without him?  After settling in, we took a walk to the city centre to find Easy Hotel, the hotel where my boyfriend would stay until Sunday and had briefly lunch at local hamburger restaurant called Byron.

Newcastle Castle and City Centre

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Have I told you that Newcastle is very hilly? Our walk is very eventful and rigorous. I am thinking not to sign up for a local fitness club, since walking is already an exercise! Our first destination was a historical place in Newcastle and the place where Newcastle got its name from – the Newcastle castle. A historic and inspiring castle that is dated hundred, if not, thousand years ago. I would recommend you to visit this castle and understand the beautiful history behind the castle (be prepared for the 99 steps to reach the top). Interestingly, my fellow Erasmus student from Belgium will be interning there. She is called Anggie and she will be featured mostly on my blog post with other Erasmus students.

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As we moved from Newcastle Castle, we strolled around the city centre and found a huge shopping square called INTU Eldon Shopping Centre. You will find almost everything there. If you are a student, I recommend you to visit stores like Poundland and Tiger should you need essential things for your room or bathroom and they fit within your budget.

As we approached Sunday, sadly, my boyfriend had to come home to the Netherlands. Although it was very sad, we promised to meet each other next time.

International Newcastle

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The day had come and how excited I was to meet Zelie, my mentor at International Newcastle. She was very kind and helpful on my first day, especially on the first week. Before I met Zelie, however, I also met my work placement supervisor, Iris, who accompanied me to the first meeting. It went very well although there were some points that needed clarifications e.g. professional and general competences. I called this first week “Induction Week” and was informed by the many interesting projects that I will be involved at International Newcastle.

WEEK 2

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My 2nd week went very smoothly and I got to meet Carrie Brookes, the Communication specialist at International Newcastle and David Faulkner, the co-ordinator of Newcastles of the World, and with whom I shall work together for the project Newcastles of the World. What a pleasant opportunity! Moreover, I got the chance to meet the Swedish Counsel (Caroline Theobald) and German Counsel (Manuela Wendler), with whom I will share my office.

In the 2nd week, I have been busying myself with uploading personal files of IN to a shared drive. A work that is both meticulous and tedious, regardless, it’s a work that I love the most: organizing stuff.

At the office, we had a bit problem with the internet, but I am really glad that the internet has been solved on Friday, what a beautiful thing to start the weekend with knowing that you are able to access the internet at your office!

Angel of the North

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Weekend means I got to have the opportunities to explore any touristic places around Newcastle and in UK. So, I started my first travel journey by visiting  Angel of the North, a huge contemporary sculpture that made of steel, and resembles an angel who spreads her wings. When I visited the location, there were people from different ages and groups, and of course they took pictures in front of the sculpture.

If you are interested to visit Angel of the North, take Bus 21 ( Go North East) to Gateshead and step out at the stop called “Angel of the North”. A food truck (or shall I say “drink truck”?) was nearby selling some hot beverages or cookies for consumption.

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Don’t forget to bring your student card, because a day ticket with the bus costs you GBP 8! With a valid student card, the day ticket is very affordable, which at GBP 3,80.

So, this is the end of my blog post, I will see you in the next 2 weeks

‘til then!

p.s.: Shout out to my fellow Odisee students who do their work or study placement in UK, Belgium and other beautiful and exotic locations around the world.

p.s.s.: if you notice that the title of my blog post is a local Geordie phrase that means “What’s happening?”.

Yours truly,

Bianca