Every week we find a student at Narvik University College and get to know them better. This week we meet Giovanni Genta. It was a very enjoyful and funny interview. Let’s know him better!
Text: Zeynep Yarkin. Photo: Håvard Johannes Nielsen.
How old are you?
I am 23 years old.
Where are you from?
I am from Reggio Emilia in Italy. It’s a very nice city two hours south of Milan.
What are you studying and which year are you at now?
I have a bachelor degree on Mechatronics at University of Modena and Reggio Emilia. I am doing my master degree now again on Mechatronics. This is my last year. I came to Narvik as an exchange student for the autumn semester. I have been here since August and will go back to Italy at the end of the semester.
Why did you choose this study programme?
I wanted to study both Mechanical and Electrical Engineering. Mechatronics is the meeting point of both topics. I like it very much.
Why did you choose Narvik?
Living in Norway for some time is the most interesting and different experience for me that I had out of Italy. First I decided on Norway, and in Norway the best, and honestly the only option to study the topic I am interested in, was at Narvik University College.
Narvik University College is important and in a way, Narvik means Norway for me. It is also important for me that it’s an English programme, so I do not have problem with the language. Apart from the school, Narvik and Norway has a very nice nature and many places to ski. This also had an effect on my decision of coming to Norway for an abroad experience.
What is the best thing about studying in Narvik?
Let me think…Theoretical lessons finish before noon.
What is the worst thing about studying in Narvik?
I don’t think that there is something negative about here or at least I did not have any negative experiences so far.
What is the best thing about your country and city?
Italy has a very beautiful nature and also very deep and varied historical and cultural background. And of course we have really delicious food!
The best thing in my city is for sure a traditional Italian dish called “capeletti”. It’s a kind of pasta like ravioli, filled with meat and mostly made by grandmothers.
Where can we eat the best food in Reggio Emilia?
If you like eating meat, there is a place called “Macelleria Fornaciari”. They are both selling and cooking meat. You can buy delicious meat to cook by yourself or you can book a place to also eat there.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I love being in nature, so I mostly do mountain activities like climbing, skiing and hiking. I also love playing guitar and drinking beer with friends.
I studied in a conservatoire in Italy for ten years and specialized on playing guitar. I started when I was 11 years old and graduated when I was 21, on the second year of my bachelor degree. I can play any kind of guitars and music with the guitar. So I love playing guitar but it’s just like my hobby now; I don’t think it as a profession for myself. I could not bring my guitar from Italy but here I asked one of my neighbors to bring his own guitar from Bodø and it’s so great for me that I could keep on playing here.
Do you have a nickname that your family or friends call you?
My family calls me “Gio”. It’s quiet funny but some of my friends call me “Bomber”. It’s a word used for star football players who makes the scores but I don’t even play football! So I don’t know why, but one day they started to call me “Bomber” and it still continues.
What is your favorite food?
That’s a hard question for an Italian, but tortelli filled with boar meat is the best, I think. I increased my cooking skills here in Narvik a lot. Me and my friends say “Let’s make homemade pizza”, “let’s make homemade pasta” and we make it. This was one of the best things we did in Narvik: increasing our cooking skills…
What is your favorite movie?
I love many movies but “Apocalypse Now” is the best for me. It’s a movie made in 1979 about the Vietnam War. Also I like “The Intouchables” very much.
Who is your favorite musician?
Peter Gabriel for sure. He is the front singer of British band of the 80’s “Genesis”.
What is your best memory in Norway?
People I met here are the best for sure. But I also love the northern lights in the middle of nothing on top of a mountain or out of the city, all trips that I made and nature and the landscapes. I will never forget these.
Would you like to come back to Norway in the future?
I love living in Italy but who knows, this is life. Why not!?
Ok, as a final question, can you summarize your experience in Norway with one word?
“Ja så havna vi på fyllefest igjen, hei skål!”