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''The best mistake I ever made''

Denmark was not the first choice when 23-year-old Dusan Do Van had to take a semester abroad. Spending six months as a student at Dania Academy in Viborg was the best experience of his life.
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Erhvervsakademi Dania

Bags are packed and ready to go. After half a year as a student at the International Higher Education in Marketing Management in Viborg it is time for Dusan Do Van to return home. As always, endings call for reflection and goodbyes.  For Dusan Denmark and Dania Academy were not the top priority, when he as a student at Manchester Metropolitan University was supposed to pursue a semester abroad.

"I thought I wanted to go to Hong Kong, but I made a mistake in my application, so instead I got my second priority - Dania. It is the best mistake I ever made, and I am so glad that I came to Viborg instead," says Dusan Do Van, who is originally from Slovakia.

Hands-on at a high level Studying at Dania was initially a big change, both in terms of teaching and exams, which are significantly different from England.

"The level of education in Dania is really high and there is a practical and theoretical approach to learning. In Manchester it is pure theory. In Viborg you get to work with real companies and learn for example how real marketing plans work. It provides hands-on experience that I can use later," explains Dusan Do Van, who was surprised that the exams contain an oral defense too.

"It gives you the opportunity to explain and elaborate on some of the ideas you have encountered during the process of writing an assignment. In this way, I feel that the grades are more 'real' or fair to England, where you just get a grade for your paper," he says

Easy to meet new people During his exchange period, he managed to make several Danish friends through Prinsens Allé in Viborg.

"It is a very flexible learning environment where it is easy to meet new people. It is very modern and nicely decorated and it is located close to the city center. In addition, you can do many things in Viborg. Playing football, going to the gym or simply going out are just a few examples. I enjoyed running around the lakes outside the city, for they remind me of my homeland," smiles Dusan.

Skip the concerns and be happy Not only had the Marketing Management study programme helped Dusan, but he feels inspired by the Danish optimism and mutual trust.

"Danes are so happy. One cannot fail to notice this, and it is rooted in the belief that everything will be all right. In England people are always so anxious and stressed, and I used to be like that too. However, after six months here, the Danish way of life has changed my attitude and manner of living. Now I am also an optimist and I believe, everything will be OK," he says and explains, that he will tell his family and friends about this new perspective.  He would enjoy spending holiday with his parents in Denmark in order to show them some of the beautiful places he has visited.

"Skagen, Himmelbjerget at Silkeborg and Copenhagen are beautiful places that I have visited with the other international students - but nothing beats Viborg. That city will always be something special for me."


Dusan is finishing his studies at Manchester Metropolitan University and has undergone an internship abroad at Dania in Denmark. The slovakian student was granted the Erasmus+ financial support for his semester abroad.

Dusan's semester abroad at Dania in Denmark was supported financially by the European program Erasmus+. An important aim of Erasmus+ is to enable as many young Europeans as possible to take a semester or do their internship abroad.

To learn more about the programme visit the Info meeting on Wednesday 25th February at 7 PM at Prinsens Allé 2 in Viborg, Denmark. 

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