Could you tell us the main reasons for choosing Norway as your study destination?

“I came to Norway for a practical internship at St. Olav‘s Hospital in Trondheim. The reason I chose to absolve this internship in Norway is that I really like the country and its people. I had been to Oslo and Bergen on holiday before.”

Why did you choose the institution you where at?

“I chose St. Olav‘s Hospital for my internship because it is one of the three Hospitals in Norway that have departments for Maxillofacial Surgery, which is what I would like to do later on. The remaining two hospitals are in Bergen and Oslo, but since I have already been there, I chose Trondheim.”

What was your idea about Norway before you arrived?    

“Before coming to Norway the first time I thought of it as a place where urban areas are closely connected to nature and exceptional countryside. And I found this to be true. I was truly amazed by the fjords, forests and mountains everywhere. My expectation of the hospital was that it would be equipped with mostly the same technologies as we have in our German hospitals. But I expected the equipment to be a little more up-to-date, as I thought that Norway invested more money in hospitals.”

Which are the main differences from your country when it comes to your life as a student?

“In my spare time, I spent a lot more time outdoors than in Germany because there was so much to see. I went hiking every weekend, which is something I barely ever do at home. Also I spent a lot more time cooking because I was living with a Pakistani and a Chinese student and I got an insight into making new food.”

In your opinion, what is the most important academic outcome as an international student in Norway?

“Learning about methods of treatment and operational procedures in oral- and Maxillofacial Surgery in a foreign country. Prior to my internship in Norway, I had only been to German hospitals. It seems quite appealing to work in Norway as a doctor or a dentist. The working hours are not as bad as in Germany and the work environment is a lot friendlier and more relaxed. I like to imagine working in Norway at least for a couple of years after having finished my studies.”

Are there any personal experiences as a foreign student in Norway you would highlight?

“The trip I took to Bodø at the end of my stay in Norway was a special experience.. I took the train and stared out of the window almost the entire ride. The arctic landscape took my breath away and I filled my phone‘s memory with about 300 images. Even though I have to say that Bodø might not be the most beautiful city on earth, I really enjoyed the cold wind and the snow."

What would you tell students from your country about university life in Norway?

“I would recommend an internship in Norway to anyone who is a little into adventure and who is interested in seeing a little more of the world.”

What did you miss the most when you where away from your country?

“The food. I am used to German cuisine, which is quite hefty, compared to the Norwegian seafood dishes. However, that is not good enough a reason to keep me from going to Norway for a longer period.”

In your opinion, what is the most important outcome of being an international student?

“The most important outcome of being an international student is finding out that adapting to a completely new and unknown environment is by far not as hard as one might think. I also think that gaining the ability to speak a new language is an important outcome that, if you are willing to learn, comes with surprisingly little effort. I do not know a lot of Germans who can speak Norwegian and I like the fact that I can. Of course, academic achievements are important as well, but not as important as the personal experiences that you will inevitably make when you spend some time studying abroad.”

What are you doing now?

“I am now continuing my dentistry studies in Germany at the University of Witten/Herdecke.”

What are your future plans?

“Becoming a dentist and studying medicine – hopefully at least partly in Norway, and then becoming an Oral- and Maxillofacial Surgeon. It a long journey, but I like being a student.”

20 May 2015