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Predeal – a wild girl with a bunch of nerds

Updated: Mar 3, 2023

I spent a week in Predeal from 21 to 28 July, in the Brașov province and yes, very close to the famous Dracula castle.

The event that took me there was the Data Science International Summer School of the Bucharest University of Economic Studies. I am really bad at this kind of study, I call myself ‘technologically stupid’ so what was I doing among all those brains and nerds?

I was in the organisers’ team and specifically responsible for social media managing the LinkedIn page of the Bucharest Business School and helping with social events in the early days. In fact, the intention was really to get people to bond. The idea in the minds of the Summer School’s creators was for this to be a complete experience, a series of social and even professional connections between all the professors and participants, not just a set of subject-specific lectures.

In the first days these social events took place, the first one was a kind of speed dating. It was curious how at the beginning everyone was listless and then those three minutes were no longer enough. In the following days, there were also physical games, so we really wanted to get them out of their bubble and mix it up. Finally, also an escape room designed for these geniuses that included things like the Rubik’s cube, the Fibonacci formula and equations to be solved among novels, plants, balloons and pasta!

But my favourite events were the discovery trips to the wonderful Brașov region, both to the historic capital city and the long hikes through the magnificent Carpathian mountain range. These were unmissable team-building moments, the teamwork in nature, but also the logistical organisation created an atmosphere of great complicity between all participants.

The thing that surprised me the most was the warm welcome of the team. I am new and not from the environment and instead they always treated me with respect and conviviality. I felt I was part of the team.

But even better, in the succession of days, I got to know all the participants, a cigarette in the breaks, a glass of wine at dinner, an outing together. These were all glimpses of which I’ve met humble and human people. Who would have thought it from all these passionate programmers? I loved that people from all over the world were gathered at this event: USA, China, Norway, UK, Syria, just to mention a few. In the end, it was like being on an Erasmus+ intercultural exchange!

It was my honour and pleasure to learn from this experience, to help the team and the participants form teams where their wonderful brains could create new software, or applications or even robotic mechanisms.

- Diletta

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