Erasmus Student Network or shortly ESN is one of the biggest non-profit interdisciplinary student organizations in Europe, which was founded in 1989. Its aim is to support and develop student exchange and provide an inter-cultural experience. On the other side, it also offers so-called "internationalisation at home" to those students who cannot access a period abroad. ESN work by the principle "students helping students". ESN is present in 38 countries and has more than 500 sections all over Europe. There are around 12.000 volunteers who annually help and offer services to 160.000 exchange students.
You can find more about ESN at: www.esn.org
ESN Maribor was established in 2001, as an independent association, which is working hand in hand with the International relations office of the University of Maribor.
The mission of ESN Maribor is to help with the integration of Erasmus and other foreign students into the local environment. It is part of the Erasmus Student Network and is composed out of Slovenian student volunteers who were or are going on exchange.
As the most active section in Slovenia, we have more that 40 active members, more than 100 mentors and we help around 300 exchange students per semester. All our members and buddies are volunteers, who don't get any salaries or pay any fees.
Being a stranger in a foreign land, lost and not knowing anyone is not the best feeling in the world. That’s why we have our buddies.
Who is a buddy?
It’s a Slovenian volunteer student, who "adopts" an exchange student, makes sure he feels like at home and helps him through the first steps of living in Maribor.
Point of buddy system is to help the Erasmus students to establish a social and academic network in Maribor. The Buddy Program is designed especially to introduce Erasmus students to the city, the places to go out and to integrate them in our way of life.
Your buddy will try to pick you up at the main train/bus station of Maribor or other point you will arrange with him/her via email before arrival.
Their task consists the first month before arriving of introducing yourself and answering some questions that concern your well-being in the city and how to reach the city. When you arrive your buddy will take you to see the city, the places to go out and places to go shopping etc. and can also introduce you to meet his/her Slovenian friends. He/She will help you with the formalities – residence permit, introduce you the food coupon system, opening a bank account etc.
Local Slovenian students (buddies) also know where to find the cheapest beer in the city, where you can eat excellent food or party till the morning. They know which bus to take to visit beautiful parts of the city and where to go to bowling or billiard.
This should all be a lot of fun, and not be a burden to either one of you. All in all, the Buddy program will take about a few months, but of course it is free to continue seeing each other after that.
Remember, your buddy does this voluntary, meaning that he/she likes to do all these things with you; however, your buddy is not responsible for cleaning your mess.
Each Erasmus student can buy ESNcard (7€) with which he/she has many discounts in Maribor (taxi, rent a car, sports, various bars/restaurants). With ESNcard you can get free IZIMobil SIM card. ESNcard is valid all over Europe.
You can check the list of discounts on the ESN Maribor page and the ESNcard page for other countries: http://esncard.org/.
ESN Maribor events and projects
- WELCOME WEEKS
Welcome weeks are the official kick-off to an unforgettable Erasmus Exchange at the University of Maribor. Its 2 weeks of nonstop fun, filled with amazing activities through day and night, starting on the first day of each semester.
Main purpose of this event is to help you to integrate into your new environment, get to know each other and feel the rhythm of Maribor life. And of course to show you that Maribor is the best place where to spend ERASMUS.
Some of the activities:
- Slovene night
- Polyglot caffe
- Movie night
- International Dinner
- Gala night
- Sports day
Welcome weeks end with a 3 day sLOVEnia trip.
- TRIPS - go for a trip around Slovenia, Bosnia, Italy, ....
- ERASMUS AWARDS - the Oscars in Erasmus style.
- RESPONSIBLE PARTY - party hard, but party responsibly as well.
Erasmus Wednesday theme parties - have a break between your study & go for a theme party.
Sports day - have fun and be healthy.
Polyglot cafe - learn a few words in every language and teach your own language at the same.
Cultural evenings - present your country.
All the events organized by ESN Maribor are organized for you to help you get the most out of your Erasmus life!
All ESN events are non-profit and are organized by students on a voluntary basis!
ESN Maribor (ESN at UM)
Slomškov trg 15