Ekaterina Mandova

Nationality
Bulgarian

Age
27

Motto / Life vision
You can achieve your goals only by pursuing your dreams

Study programme
Erasmus Mundus Master's in Journalism, Media and Globalisation

Personal profile
My name is Ekaterina Mandova and I am a dedicated journalism student that hopes one day to be capable of bringing social change through writing. I have a flair for story-telling, languages, coding, graphics and radio production, but still my biggest passion is music (though I do not really play a music instrument). I like to keep myself busy and to get involved in various projects and causes both as a journalist and a volunteer. I worked, lived and studied in different countries as a result my identity is mixed and diverse and I consider myself multi-local, so 'home' has an extended meaning for me. Foreign language acquisition is a topic I have been involved in for the best part of my life. As a child, I attended a bilingual school, then I pursued a Bachelor degree in Indian studies and linguistics, I had been teaching English as a foreign language to adults for around four years and not long afterwards I had the chance to carry out an internship at the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML) of the Council of Europe. Currently, I continue being involved in foreign language acquisition through my work for the ECML Contact Point Denmark and Lærdansk Aarhus. Moreover, I am currently carrying out an internship at the Aarhus BSS Career & Alumni, where I am in a constant touch with Danish because I correspond regularly not only with my Danish colleagues but also with a lot of students.

Your student experience at Lærdansk Aarhus
The experience at Lærdansk Aarhus has always been nice. Going to language classes makes me feel as if I were back to school and I really enjoy it. Along with the language, I learn a lot about Danish traditions, songs and the Danes, and I make good friends on the way.

A funny experience from when you started to learn/use the Danish language
What I have noticed is that Danes are very tolerant when you try to speak Danish on the streets, even though they hear your thick accent very well. It happened to me once that I ordered a coffee and a croissant in a café, but I guess I pronounced 'croissant' in such a way that made the girl behind the cashier switch to English. I believe that she noticed my frustration and switched quickly back to Danish. Besides this, I make my Danish friends burst out laughing as I mispronounce 'lyder' and instead of 'Det lyder godt' (It sounds good), I say 'Det luder godt' (It / prostitute / good). They still get what I mean, though.

Your experience as an Ambassador
It is a great feeling when people approach me with Lærdansk-related questions. It is even a greater feeling when I have the right answers or I can assist them in some way. The project not only helped me develop skills in social media and design, but helped me meet amazing people, which is a very important aspect when you have just arrived in a new country. Moreover, I feel more committed to learning Danish and, due to the regular Facebook and blog posts, Danish has become an integral part of my daily life.

Short description of your individual project
Well, I mentioned music earlier, didn’t I? Another Ambassador and I believe that music is a great way to learn a new language. So, we decided to team up and bring to life a project called 'Lærdansk med musik'. We think it is an easy and funny way not only to enrich your daily vocabulary, but also to learn some tunes that are popular in Denmark at the moment. See an example of our posts here and follow us on our blog.  

Contact details
E-mail: kate.mandova@gmail.com // LinkedIn profile