Emma has recently joined our internships programme. She will be with us full time from September until the end of January. She comes from The Netherlands and is studying for a master’s degree in Euroculture at the University of Groningen and University of Uppsala.
We have asked her five questions in order for you to get to know her.
What convinced you to join the Cardiff EDC for an internship?
The possibility to gain more in-depth knowledge about the EU and its institutions was a motivator for applying for the internship at the Cardiff EDC. During my studies I have learned extensively about the EU, this internship therefore allows me to refresh and build on that information!
Also, my interest in Wales was a factor. I am very interested in the position of Wales in the EU and the UK. Being an intern at EDC gives me the opportunity to gain more knowledge about this topic, which will be valuable for the research for my master’s thesis.
What are you currently studying and how does this relate to your work at the EDC?
Currently I study the master’s in Euroculture. Euroculture is an interdisciplinary master which includes culture, politics, law, and society. During the first year of my master’s I studied in Groningen at the University of Groningen and at the University of Uppsala in Sweden.
The master’s does not only focus on politics and institutions but also allows students to experience the social and cultural differences and similarities in Europe and the EU. My studies fit very well with the work at EDC as it requires knowledge about the EU and Europe in general. I am really happy to be able to apply this knowledge when working at the EDC.
What do you hope to achieve whilst working at the EDC?
During my internship I hope to extensively expand my knowledge about the EU. I would also like to further develop my professional writing skills. I am quite comfortable with writing academic papers, and I would like to achieve the same level of comfort with writing professional or news articles.
How are you finding the experience of working at the Cardiff EDC and living in Cardiff so far?
In the few weeks that I worked at the EDC I already gained so much knowledge. I got the opportunity to work on records for the Yearbook of European Law. During my master’s I had one course in EU law, so this was a welcome elaboration on my existing knowledge. It is a very comfortable environment to work and to develop yourself. I really appreciate that the EDC allows you to focus on topics of personal preference.
Regarding Cardiff, it is wonderful city. During my bachelor’s in European Languages and Cultures, I also spent six months in Cardiff. It has been three years since I stayed here, but it is still as pretty. The parks and the arcades continue to amaze me. I especially look forward to Christmas time, with all the lights.
Could you briefly tell us what Europe means and has meant to you?
Europe means to me a variety of things. The free movement of persons established by the EU has given me the opportunity to live in Sweden, the UK and Italy. I can confidently say that without the EU and the Erasmus programme this would not have been possible. The experience of living in other countries and the lessons I learned are very valuable and cannot compete with reading about it in a book.
What I discovered when staying abroad were the small cultural differences and the history of certain traditions. These small cultural differences you also discover about your own culture, as being in contact with something that is not your own puts everything in a new perspective.