Stefania, Italian, arrived in Luxembourg 20 years ago from London. A very open personality, with very positive attitude she integrated easily in the Grand-Duchy thanks to the people that she met and helped her.
When did you arrive to Luxembourg and why?
I arrived in Luxembourg with my family (my husband and two very young children) in 1999 from London, where I had lived for 5 and a half years. At the time, I was expecting my third baby. We arrived here because my husband had found a job here with an international bank.
Do you remember how you felt when you first arrived in Luxembourg? What were your first impressions?What did you do to integrate at the beginning?
From the start, I have had a very positive feeling with this country. Of course, at the beginning I felt alone, but very soon I had the possibility to meet people who gave me valuable advice on schools, doctors, etc.
3 kids and 20 years later is your vision of Luxembourg changed?
After almost 20 years here in Luxembourg, I still think that this was the best decision we could take for our life and our future.
You have 3 kids and eachone of them has experienced a difference eductational system.
Concerning my children’s education, they all attended the Luxembourgish public primary school. This was a positive choice as it enabled them to learn the local language. What I found very negative was that the orientation towards the secondary school (classical versus technical school) was completely in the hands of the teachers. Fortunately, this approach has now changed.
Can you share with us your insights about the different schools you have chosen?
Afterwards, they followed three different school systems. My eldest one continued with a Luxembourgish public Secondary School, Lycée de Garçons. The second one went to Belgium, Athénée Royale d’Arlon. The third one attended the French school, Lycée Vauban.
I think the Luxembourgish high school was very good and very performing. The added value is that my son could further improve his practical knowledge of the Luxembourgish language and culture, and hence he could feel very integrated in this country.
The Belgian school was very good too. However, the environment was less international in comparison to Luxembourg.
The French school is probably the best one in terms of quality teaching. However, one has to consider the competitive approach of this school.
If you were to leave Luxembourg what would you miss the most?
I don’t want to leave Luxembourg. If I were forced to leave, a part of me would always remain in this country. Luxembourg is very humane and at the same time very orderly. Moreover, it offers a lot of different opportunities to people who have an idea to develop.
Finally is Luxembourg your home now?
I have no doubts: Luxembourg is my home.