"Veni, vidi, da Vinci"

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Hi! I'm Iulia Corcoveanu, a senior at the National College "Gheorghe Lazar" from Sibiu, Romania.

The blog “ Veni, vidi, da Vinci ” was first created by students and teachers of our college in order to express their thoughts and share ideas about the “Leonardo da Vinci” project that they experienced in UK, almost 5 years ago. Photos of their work and fun activities were also uploaded to show others how they managed to combine their tasks with pleasure.

Starting from this year, my teacher Monica Oancea, who participated in this project, and I decided to update the blog by posting something about students’ opinions of how this travel experience has changed their future and helped them with their new job. Participating students offered us information about their future plans and sent us recent photos of them (working or travelling abroad). Most of them were quite enthusiastic when they gave reasons why the project had a significant role in their professional training.

All in all, our goal of recreating the blog is our participation in the Thinkquest International Competition 2011 as we want to make known the “ Leonardo da Vinci ” project results as well as the great experience that our college graduaters had there.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


"LEONARDO DA VINCI" Project Results

"Leonardo da Vinci" program was initiated by the European Union in 1994 as a Community Program for international cooperation in professional training field of the workforce. Romania has participated in the "Leonardo da Vinci " as a partner from 1 September 1997.

The program aims to increase quality, innovative character and the European dimension in vocational training systems and practices. The program helps to promote European knowledge by creating an area of cooperation in education and career training. The project of the National College "Gheorghe Lazar" Sibiu ELECT (E-Learning Encompassing Choice Tasks) consisted of a period of five weeks, from 1st May to 4th June 2006, in Plymouth, United Kingdom, where 15 students of 11th grade (Băcilă Oana, Bechet Andrei, Bîldea Adrian, Bucerzan Andreea, Cristea Andrei, Gancea Andreea, Hămbăşan Bogdan, Lazăr Mircea, Măerean Andreea, Marcu Victor, Marin Iulian, Părăian Andreea, Purcărea Radu, Sopa Christian, Ţuglui Ioana) and their teacher Monica Maria Oancea travelled for experiencing something new and unique.

The project was developed thanks to the company Work Experience UK, which was selected from the list of National Agency for EU Programs in Education and Training. The management team of Leonardo da Vinci project ELECT was composed of: headmaster Gabriel Octavian Negrea, Computer Science teacher Monica Maria Oancea, teacher of English as a Foreign Language Daniela Bunea and accountant Maria Săcelean who kept to fully accomplish some professional, linguistic and cultural objectives:
· improvement of English language from intermediate to proficiency level;
· development of the skills of modern information and communication technologies;
· understanding the culture and mentality of the United Kingdom and Europe.

Before travelling, students were taught in an extracurricular course how to use modern aids of teaching and evaluating activities within the AEL frame, in Computer Studies Laboratory under the guidance of teachers of English and Computer Science.

The linguistic preparation was oriented on themes that are specific to British culture and civilisation. To fulfill this objective, at The English Centre in Plymouth, UK our students took interesting classes, which drew attention to communicative competencies related to different topics.

The project was conceived to match the training needs of students in Mathematics – Computer Science, intensive courses, which were vocational training in ICT and they could get a professional certification at the end of their secondary education. The professional training fields regarded were: software developing, web design, advertising, project development, marketing, enterprising education.

The students had specific clear tasks to perform, they had the technical and informational frame, where they were permanently guided and supervised. Some of them made web sites for the firms, in their own design, or developed a part of on-line sales on already existing sites; others created different banners and commercials on the computer; did marketing studies or learnt programs for manipulating mobiles on computers.

Living in English families, the beneficiaries have enjoyed their hospitality and joined their social life. Cultural aim of the project consisted of numerous visits to representative museums in London, Plymouth, Cornwall and Dartmouth. At the Theatre Royal in Plymouth, they have spent an unforgettable evening enjoying a musical comedy "NHS - National Hospital Service, and other places of real interest were visited such as: the historic Barbicans, National Aquarium, National Library, the University, Plymouth Dome, Tower Museum of Natural Sciences, Science Museum, Madame Tussaud’s, National Gallery, St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, London Bridge, London Piccadilly Circus.

Students said travelling is knowledge, spiritual enrichment, managing to go beyond the limited horizon of one’s own existence. For the beneficiaries of this project, in addition to the professional and linguistic objectives, personal objectives were accomplished. The participants spent a period of five weeks in Plymouth, safe from all points of view, with welcome moments of relaxation and fun, being on their feet, in fact becoming responsible like real adults. In addition, increased ability for cooperation and teamwork were seen as two real goals in terms of personal development in a wider Europe.

The first target, the linguistic one, was fulfilled beyond the presumed initial level, by all beneficiaries, each obtained from the Linguistic Centre, a diploma that certifies their linguistic competencies at advanced level. All the students were little specialists and at the end they received a certificate stating their professional competencies and an evaluation sheet with their score. The immediate impact of the project on the students was, as their parents and teachers noticed, better organisational skills, increased ability in making decisions and solving tasks more rapidly.

Another remarkable result refers to the educational and professional orientation of the participants as all the competencies acquired will help them further on in their career. The project also ensures the reinforcement of the beneficiaries’ aptitudes and competencies in ICT at European standards, students having the possibility to work better in the field of technologies assisted by the computer, and also the potential to adapt to the expectations of the European area of activity.

Host partners have expressed their positive assessment of the participants’ achievements and they were satisfied with their work and level of knowledge in English. Many companies have appreciated the professional qualities of beneficiaries, who have completed advanced sites, banners and advertising, sites for companies selling on-line and various other projects required.

The experience that Romanian students had in UK will definitely be helpful for the next projects that our college will be involved in.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


. . . remembering the way life used to be as a highschool student gives you the desire to relive some moments. . .
I tried to get in touch with the participants of the "Leonardo da Vinci" project from 2006 and most of them really enjoyed travelling abroad and representing our college.
The only things that still gather them together are the photos, which remind them about the great time that they had in Plymouth, UK. It is a gift to watch the illustrations and recall all the gorgeous moments lived as a team.

Ioana Tuglui:

"This was an unique experience for me …I saw how people in UK work, their culture and the way they deal with daily problems and I was happy to share all these with them.

Even if it was a short experience (or at least it was the way I saw it), only 6 weeks, I learned many things that helped me in my future experience in life.

This program will always remember me of my highschool years."

Oana Bacila:

"Five weeks in UK were a great experience for all of us.
We all knew at the time of departure that it would be great, that we would become somewhat friends and that we would learn so many useful, exciting and great things about working, studying and living in UK.
I definitely think this experience helped me see the world through other eyes and be more open-minded.
I honestly hope I'll come back someday to London and especially to Plymouth, where I have so many beautiful memories..."

Andreea Maerean (right), a graduate student of The National College "Gheorghe Lazar", sent me a recent photo of her together with some thoughts regarding her participation in the "Leonardo da Vinci" project:

"There are many words that come into my mind when I think of the experience in UK. However, if I would have to describe it in a single word I would use “extraordinary”. Yes, the experience was extraordinary, but not because everything was great or easy, it was extraordinary because it was complex and unique. It helped me grow and mature, I tried new things, I got an insight into another culture, I learned to be responsible and, importantly, I had fun! For me this project opened the door to what is called an international experience. Basically, it influenced my life as now I continue the international experience that I had back then by choosing to study in Denmark. I would like to end my thoughts by saying “thank you“ to Mrs Monica Oancea and Mrs Elena Bunea as they enriched my life experience by making the project real."

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Being helped by my teacher, I managed to get in contact with Bogdan Hămbăşan, another student whose work has definitely been positively influenced by the experience he had in UK.

I posted his real impression of the past project
. . . and I uploaded some photos of him working as a young architect.

Bogdan Hămbăşan
"Now, since I'm an Architecture student I can confidently look back and say that my 6 week-experience in Plymouth, UK was the highlight of all my extracurricular achievements during high school, a considerable contribution to my professional growth. My assignment was to start developing a conceptual web site for "The Drum Centre, Plymouth", a company involved in the music industry by commercializing drum kits. I was to gain my first marketing knowledge there, after discussing PR issues that had to be applied on a real, non-academic project. Overall I found the project outstandingly enriching, as it really helped me broaden my perspective and embrace life with a professional attitude. This type of experience should be a must in every student's education as the multicultural group is a tremendous environment where students and teachers overpass cultural barriers in an effort to challenge themselves and develop constantly."

Andrei Bechert travelled in UK in the summer of 2009, three years after participating at "Leonardo da Vinci" project.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Victor Marcu, who participated in "Leonardo da Vinci" program in 2006 together with other students and teachers from our college "Gheorghe Lazar", travelled in USA with "Work and travel" program last summer. Nice picture with Statue of Liberty! :)

Have you ever wondered which are the benefits of participating in all kinds of projects during school time and traveling abroad for changing experience? Some of us think that this activity is just a waste of time, but others can give us a lot of good reasons why they are definitely willing to experience something new, unique and useful for their future.

There has been such a long time since 2006, the year when students of our college participated in "Leonardo da Vinci" program for five weeks in Plymouth, UK. They worked at different companies and were involved in great activities such as uploading companies’ websites, learning to create a good advertisement and studying marketing issues.

I decide to post something about students’ opinions of how this travel experience has changed their future and helped them with their job. I set up an interview for our graduaters and they nicely answered my question.

Here are their thoughts of what “Leonardo da Vinci” program meant to them.

Andrei Bechet said:

“ My drive for learning new technologies lead me to participate in the “Work experience UK” project which required us to stay in Plymouth UK for six weeks and in my case to develop a website, this actually being my first one. In my opinion, this project was very important, as it held implications in both my professional and social skills. It was a real challenge because we had a very short time in which we had to adapt to the new environment, to a new and intriguing culture, and also to do a very good job at the work place. In my opinion, I managed to meet all expectations. Later on, after we returned to Romania, I even had a small part-time job for one month for my employer in Plymouth. It involved doing some Google AdSense work. “

Andrei Cristea said:

“ Hi there. Being able to take part in the program was a great thing for me. It was quite an experience and surely it did help me a lot in my future career. I was able to see and play an active part in an advertising company (Adfab of Plymouth) and that was great because I was able to see how a company runs in UK and internationally. Apart from that my English skills got significantly better during the period I spent there. ”

Victor Marcu said:

“ England 2006" was one of the most important projects in my life, the first time when a was traveling abroad and where, in the magnificent UK. This new and interesting experience helped me in many ways: taking contact with a new culture, practicing English, live and adapt in a powerful economy. I can consider this project like a door opener, because after this I have traveled two times in USA with "Work and travel" program and I'm going to do this again next summer. My advice for everyone is to take every chance of travelling abroad, because this experience can change in many good ways their lives! ”

Radu Purcarea said:

“ It was definitely an enriching experience. For me, it was the first time I went abroad and the first time I was involved in a project like that and the first time I ever worked (even though it was just an internship). So…many firsts. But nevertheless it taught me a lot about teamwork, group effort, involvement, planning and in contrast to that, just how to be on your own. I was also able to explore and admire the wonders that England has to offer. Great country, hope I'll return there one day. And hope others will enjoy the experience I had. ”

Monday, April 23, 2007


Andreea Bucerzan and the others
at language preparation...

Andreea Maerean assisted the work of the pupils at HOLY CROSS RC SCHOOL in Plymouth...

Radu Purcarea, Hambasan Bogdan and Victor Marcu studying at WORK EXPERIENCE UK...

Andrei Cristea working in advertising in a firm called AdFab...

Sopa Christian studying at ATLAS GRAPHICS Design and advertising...

Visiting Andreea Gancea at PURPLE TELECOMMUNICATIONS...

Visit at OPEN EYE MARKETING at Andrei Bechet's workplace...

Visit at VALLEY VILLAS LTD at Oana Bacila 's workplace...

Andreea Paraian working at GRANBY ISLAND Community...

Ioana Tuglui uploaded the site at SOUND LETS- firm...

Adrian Bildea realised an on-line sales site at JOBLAINE MUGS & PROMOTIONS...

For some hours we worked on language preparation...