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Studying in Brussels... the capital of Europe

Brussels is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world. The Brussels-Capital Region, one of Belgium's three regions, is also a city with 19 boroughs covering 162 km2 and housing a million inhabitants. It is officially bilingual (French and Dutch), although it boasts an astonishing variety of cultures, styles and nationalities .

Being the capital of an expanding Europe, Brussels is an international city like no other . 31% of its population is of foreign origin, and this makes for a unique atmosphere in which cultures interact easily with one another.
English is rapidly becoming an important language in Brussels because of the numerous international political organizations. Language is not a barrier in the capital of Europe. These same differences and contrasts can be found in architectural Brussels' various styles, where you will find Gothic cathedrals and churches next to beautiful art nouveau and art deco houses.

The Grand Place (Grote Markt), with its splendid guild houses and the impressive Gothic beauty of its Town Hall, is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful town squares in Europe.

Brussels is a historical centre . Whether you want to unravel the mysteries of Brussels by exploring the Atomium, symbol of the 1958 Brussels world fair, or by checking out the different outfits of the world famous Manneken Pis, discovering Brussels will yield many surprises.

Brussels is also a centre for the arts . Feel like delving into its rich cultural heritage? A wide variety of museums, theatres, and concert halls will see to your every need. Grab a movie at Kinepolis, one of the largest in Europe with 24 cinema theaters and a giant IMAX movie screen. Catch a glimpse of the Eiffel tower, the Brandenburg Gate, and other miniature sized major European monuments at MINI EUROPE. Or relive the adventures of Belgium's comic book heroes like Tintin and his dog Snowy at the Comic Book Museum.

Brussels is also a delight for your taste buds . Chocolate, delicious local cuisine, the smell of hot waffles on a cold winter's day, bars and pubs that never close. you'll find it all. Belgium boasts an incredible diversity of beers, many of them flavoured with herbs, spices and fruits.

A great many people work in Brussels . It is the headquarters of the European Commission, the European Council, the European Parliament. The Brussels-Capital Region accounts for nearly 18% of all of Belgium's exported goods and services. The compulsory medical insurance system provides comprehensive coverage, making health care affordable for all. Patients have free choice of hospital and insurance provider.

A lot of people study in Brussels . Education is free and compulsory until the age of 18. The cost of attending university is very reasonable (especially compared to the US and the UK). This investment in people pays off.

In a 2001 study of the OESO, the Flemish Youth (aged 15) held the world's highest scores in mathematics, ending third in sciences (after Japan & North Korea).

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Hugo Thienpont
Prof. Dr. Ir.
Hugo Thienpont
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Nadia Cornand

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