Internship in Ljubljana, Slovenia

Mindaugas Raitelaitis

Every one of us is looking for ways to find ourselves in life. It’s not an easy task, but there are things that can make it easier. Sometimes we have to move out of our comfort zone and face our fears or things that make us uncomfortable. It sound easy, but when you are facing such a moment you shiver out of fear and take the easy road, you do whatever worked for you before. How to learn not to repeat yourself?

The answer is simple – Erasmus+ post graduate traineeship (or any other international Erasmus+ exchange program). It’s the best way to prepare yourself for future and for adult life, not the one which looks boring and repetitive, the one where You have choices, opportunities and moments of full satisfaction. This is what Erasmus+ post graduate traineeship gave me.

I spend 4 months of my life in small capital of beautiful country Ljubljana, Slovenia. I worked in University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical faculty, Agronomy department’s genetics laboratory. I came there with lots of confidence and energy, with idea, that I want to do everything, work with everyone and help everyone. Soon enough this attitude helped me to get acquainted with almost everyone in the laboratory. People knew my name and I knew theirs. It was a good start for beautiful and sincere friendship. People there are different. Much more positive, happy with everything life gives them, or at least they try to be. After one month I felt like people that I work with are my family. They cared for me, helped me and taught me everything that I was interested in. The traineeship was going well; I was working with novel molecular techniques and bioinformatics tools. Everyone I knew were not only helping me with work, but also helped me to learn more about their culture. I tried different traditional Slovenian dishes and desserts, and even some homemade wines. People seemed to be happy with everything and I think they made me feel the same way. One weekend I ended up picking olives somewhere on the slopes near the coast of Slovenia with beautiful scenery of Adriatic Sea. These spontaneous, yet unforgettable moments happened because this traineeship transformed me. Soon enough I was making decisions and stepping out of my comfort zone almost daily.

This traineeship was not only a transforming experience of my personality, but also gold mine for skills needed in my field of study (biotechnology). Methods I worked with are the most used and best methods in genetics and molecular biology and the best part of it all, was that whenever I was in doubt or did not know what to do, there were always someone there to help me out. I had opportunity not only to work on my traineeship, but also collaborate on other projects going on in department maximising experience I gained.



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