In the field of experiential learning, there is one known as job shadowing.  The trip to Reykjavik, Iceland, organised as part of our Roma Stories project, meant an exchange of know-how for a group of five Roma people. Their experience in Reykjavik, where they encountered diverse cultures, captivating landscapes and opportunities that broadened their horizons and participated at a series of workshops and one-to-one meetings with members of Icelandic organisations, so that on their return home they could develop and implement cultural, educational or social projects.
The first day consisted of “non-formal” meetings where the five participants talked about their projects and activities. In the second part of the day, the five relaxed on a walk through the streets of the Icelandic capital and visited some of the tourist attractions.
Sergiu Pleșa, 34, a teacher at a secondary school in Cluj, said he was very enthusiastic about the places he saw and the people he met. The fusion of people, places and projects added to his professional activities and he says he would repeat the experience without a second thought.
Another member of the group, Alex Stan (23) said he enjoyed the experience of ‘FlyOver Iceland’, which is Reykjavík’s newest attraction and uses state-of-the-art technology to provide the sensation of flight. What actually happens? As you fly virtually (you hover, feet dangling, in front of a 20-metre spherical screen) over glaciers, stunning fjords and Iceland’s most iconic landscapes. There are special effects such as wind, fog and scents that combine with the motion of the ride to create the impression of flight.
Ionuț Șerban, who is an actor by profession, recounted an encounter at university where he came into contact with curious students. These students expressed a sincere curiosity about the Roma people, sparking a dialogue that crossed geographical borders. This exchange embodied the global connectivity fostered by such experiences.
Bianca Neștian, the youngest of the group, enjoyed meeting teacher Sofiya Zahova and her students. Their dedication and enthusiasm for education left a beautiful impression. The profound impact of this interaction extended beyond mere professional enrichment.
One of the things they learned during their stay was to discover affordable ways of financial support to make their innovative ideas and projects a reality. Thus, they learned about cultivating entrepreneurial aspirations and opportunities to turn ideas into tangible realities.
In retrospect, the trip to Reykjavik, Iceland, and the Job Shadowing activity highlighted the transformative power of people and their ideas. The encounters with diverse Western cultures, the curiosity of the students, the inspiration of the mentors and access to financial support for their projects enriched the lives of the participants.

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