Olha Hnatiuk, a master student of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, shares her experience of staying at the Universitat de Lleida (Catalonia, Spain) under the Erasmus + program

February 8, 2022
     About the author. Olha Hnatiuk is a first-year master student of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. From September 2021 till February 2022, she studied at the Universitat de Lleida (Catalonia, Spain) under the Erasmus + program. Currently, she is completing a master's thesis at the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Biotechnology of Animal Reproduction and works at the Department of Genetics and Biotechnology of Animal Reproduction.

    I was honored to represent NUBiP of Ukraine in Lleida, at the university founded in 1300, and ranked 16th according to the Times Higher Education's Impact 2021 ranking in the quality of education.

    Studying there was significantly different. All students are motivated to study to receive profound knowledge. They care less about the grades. University offers all necessary resources for the educational process. For example, during the classes in animal biotechnology, led by Professor Romi Pena Subira, we studied animal genetics and the latest scientific advances. During the laboratory classes we performed several exciting experiments:

- transformed plasmid vectors into bacterial competent cells;


- conducted PCR tests of animal meat and milk samples to determine the species;

- conducted PCR test of Arabian horses for cerebral atrophy.


During the classes in parasitology we studied the structure of parasites and the symptoms of diseases. During the classes in animal sanitation and animal products we visited:

- several extensive and intensive goat farms;


- a small family cattle farm with local Catalan mountain cattle;



- a small farm with donkeys and a vivarium with mice, where new anticancer drugs are being studied.



   Each time before visiting the farms we were given two layers of protective clothing.



I was invited to take part in the research of a graduate student who studied the methods of storing pig meat. She researched different combinations of gas mixtures to keep meat fresh in the plastic packaging for longer.


    The most memorable class was held by a teacher, who taught ultrasound diagnostics. After the lecture, she invited us to go to the veterinary campus to show the sensors and ultrasound machines. I will remember this class forever: the teacher applied the contact gel and the sensor on her own skin in the area of ​​the abdominal cavity, and in a moment we saw her future baby on the monitor. And in a second we saw another baby. She was expecting twins and shared this with the fourth-year students!

    I fell in love with Spain. The people are friendly and eager to help, i.e. share the Internet, help with receiving vaccinations and getting a certificate.

   To conclude, the Erasmus+ program is not just about learning! It is a cultural exchange program and a great opportunity to study abroad. If you are inspired to get such an experience, contact the international department of our university.

    You can learn more about my life in Spain on my Instagram page: @magnificent_ribbon

Olha Hnatiuk

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