“It was a wonderful five days”: student reviews of the Spring International Online School “Hidden Champions of Business

“It was a wonderful five days”: student reviews of the Spring International Online School “Hidden Champions of Business

21 April 2021

On March 29 – April 4, 2021, UMTE students participated in the spring intensive course, that was organized by three universities from Belgium, Austria and Finland.

Kryuchkova Eleonora, a 2nd-year student of International Financial Management:

«A month ago I could not imagine how lucky I will be and that I will have a chance to communicate with cool guys, meet new people and practice my English.

Let's begin this journey...

My name is Eleonora and I am a 2nd-year student of International Financial Management. I love to learn English and try something new. I was lucky to be invited to the Belgium online school, where I was able to look at myself form another perspective.

Belgium Online Spring School is a new opportunity to study the language and cultures, lectures and work in teams. A few weeks before the beginning, me and my friends from UMTE were divided into teams. Each team included people of different nationalities. It was interesting and fun because, in-process of working on projects we were able to know each other a little closer and I will tell you a secret: become good friends (I have already promised to come to my new friends in Canada, Finland, and Mexico :).

To participate in this school, you must be invited and then you must pass the competition, where you need to develop your Mood Board, which would reflect you, your hobbies with a couple of beautiful photos. I really like that from the beginning we were given such a creative task. The School draw my whole attention long before the first lecture.

The program was held from the end of March to April 4. We had a few troubles with time and schedule at UMTE, but the teachers supported our participation in such program. Personally, I was able to combine my studies at University and my participation in Spring School.

Dream team

Our classes were held on Microsoft Teams platform. It wasn’t easy for me to understand how and where to communicate with other participants. But after the first lecture we quickly found each other. We chatted a lot. And we laughed a lot. By the way, greetings to these cool guys - Trinity, Jenny, and Carol, I miss you!

Our team loved work longer hours. We called each other after each lecture and shared new impressions, discussed the future project, and did some sketches for it.

The topic of our project was “Black Lives Matter”. It was about the fact that some countries do not talk about it. But we need to raise this topic and discuss it more.


The lectures were different, we talked about a lot of things from logistics in Europe to fire trucks. We managed to get acquainted with Finnish University, have a look at the University of Austria and listen to lectures from teachers and professors from other interesting and significant universities in Europe.

At the end of the week, we listened to the presentations of other teams and represented our. Themes were completely different: food waste, ocean pollution, etc. There were about 13 presentations and

all the participants were well prepared. The teachers liked our approach to work and they rated our efforts with high grades.

This experience helped me not be afraid to speak in English and develop such qualities as sociability, work in a group, and hard work.

In conclusion, I want to thank our university for participating in a large-scale event, thanks to the teachers of our university for the fact that they supported us during this journey».

Azarova Tatiana, a 2nd-year student of International Financial Management:

«Recently, I was delighted to participate in the Spring International online school "Hidden Business Champions", organized by three countries: Belgium, Finland and Austria.

To become a participant, you had to complete a pre-assignment, which was to create a Mood board of your interests and preferences and upload it to the Microsoft Teams platform. Each participant of the Spring School approached this task creatively, some of them added photos from their travels, others with their family, friends, and so on. Later, all participants were divided into groups of 4-5 people from different countries to prepare a joint project.

The first day was the introduction day. Everyone, including the teachers, introduced themselves with the help of their mood boards. It was very interesting to know the participants, where they are from, what they are studying, what they are interested in, what they expect from this course. We were also informed about possible topics and directions for the group task. There were no restrictions on the choice of topic, the main thing was that it was necessary to choose a global problem of modern society, as well as to talk about possible ways to solve it.

The second and third days were lectures. We were given lectures about the history of relations between Finland and Russia, about the economy of the Scandinavian countries. It was quite interesting to hear about innovation and business culture in the Scandinavian countries, about European logistics.

The most interactive part of Spring School for me was working as a team on a project. We have formed a "mixed" team: Russia, Argentina, Canada and the Czech Republic. The guys were very sociable and understanding, if one of us could not work at a certain time due to different time zones or classes at our university, then we always found a way out of the situation. The topic of our group work was plastic pollution of the oceans and ways to solve this problem. We worked together on our project using Google Presentation, each of us making our own slide with the information that we wanted to share. The presentation took 2 hours. We were looking for material on our topic in the previous days, actively discussing what we would like to put in the project.

On the last day we successfully presented our project. The teacher really liked the topic we chose. The other participants also excellently presented their projects on such important topics as Black Lives Matter, normalization of the use of food waste, computerization of education, finding a home for homeless animals, and many others.

It was a wonderful five days, during which I met new people, learned a lot of new things and gained invaluable experience. Thanks to our university and Spring School for the opportunity to participate in such interesting international event!»