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Italian Paola Forni doing internship at KU: “I feel sad when I think that I have to leave“

Italian Paola Forni came to study at Klaipėda University (KU) under the ERASMUS+ programmme. In Italy, Paola studies Environmental Biotechnologies at Ferrara University. Klaipėda University was recommended to her by her academic supervisor.

Please introduce yourself: your full name, where you came from, what you study in your home country and where?

My name is Paola Forni, I‘m from Italy, I‘m studying Environmental Biotechnologies in Ferrara University.

As much as I know, you are here under the ERASMUS+. Why did you choose Klaipėda University (and if you did not, then how did you appear at Klaipėda University)?

I wanted to write a thesis on ecology, in particular on macrobenthos, so I asked my supervisor in Italy where I could go. She suggested Klaipėda to me.

How long will you stay here? When did you come?

I arrived here at the beginning of July (3rd of July), and I will go back to Italy at the end of December. I feel sad when I think that I have to leave this place in less than 2 months…

What were your first impressions of Klaipėda and of Klaipėda University? Did they change, and how?  

The first impression was good, and now is even better!! At the University,  I feel like in a “scientific family”, the people I meet are really friendly, and if I need any kind of help they are always ready!! I already know the city, I was here last year as a tourist, but these months allowed me to discover every part of Klaipėda.

What are you doing at Klaipėda University? Tell us about your studies and/or research here, and about these crustaceans (I hope I got the name right).  

My research is focused on killer shrimp, a new invasive species, it means that it is not native of Lithuanian waters. We are studying  its distribution inside the Curonian Lagoon and its relationship with the other amphipods and with zebra mussel. I‘m really excited about this thesis!!

What are you doing in Klaipėda after lectures, after your finish work in the laboratory? Do you have your favorite places here in Klaipėda?

I usually go out with friends for a couple of beers in Zveju baras, Faksas, or Herkus Kantas or just to eat something and talk a lot! 🙂 But I also love to spend time outdoors, I love to go to Smiltyne‘s beach or do birdwatching and take pictures of every corner of Klaipėda and Lithuania in general.

Would you recommend Klaipėda University to other students and why? What do you think of Klaipėda University?   

I think it is a good university, unfortunately,  I can‘t say much  because I do not attend lectures, but many people in the Institute are also professors and they are really prepared and competent. The Marine Research Institute is completely new and fitted with a lot of new equipment todo all kinds of lab tests, it is really amazing!

Do you live in a student hostel? What can you tell about it? 

Yes. I live in the dormitory in Universiteto aleja, 12 (I don‘t know its official name). It is new, comfortable, and really cozy. The only negative point is that the receptionists don‘t speak English, that‘s all, but they are really nice and friendly, they helped me many times, even if we don‘t understand each other.

Thank you!