Ana Paula (Brazil)
I come from Sao Carlos in Brazil where I am doing a doctorate at the Federal University of Sao Carlos in the field of refractories. Co-operation projects between Sao Carlos and Limoges have been set up in recent years with 2 students in Master. So to promote a new exchange between the ENSCI and my university and, within the framework of the FIRE programme, it was planned that a doctorate student from the University of Sao Carlos should stay for 6 months in Limoges during the 1st semester of 2008. So I applied and I was accepted for the post. I particularly appreciate my stay at the ENSCI for the interaction with other groups it brings me, which enriches my knowledge in my field of studies. Moreover, this type of exchange is a great opportunity to meet people, laboratories, different companies in the field, in order to understand the world of refractories and all its prospects. After working on refractories during my doctorate, I now want to direct my career towards this subject. It is exciting work and I hope to succeed. It is pleasant to live in Limoges where the cost of living is within the reach of students. Concerning culture, there are many differences between Brazil and France. Of course, when you say “Brazil “, you naturally think of the carnival, football, the samba. But we are not just that. Our culture, rich and varied, has had many influences such as the Portuguese influence due to colonisation by the Portuguese Empire. Other aspects of our culture were brought by European, Asian and South American immigrants and African slaves. Thus, Brazil is a multicultural and multiethnic society. I like my life in France for the wide choice of cultural activities to be found here: museums, theatres, concerts… On the other hand, I must admit that I don’t much like the weather in Limoges which is often very gloomy.