– Could you tell us the main reasons for choosing Norway as your study destination?
I chose Norway as my destination because the country is promising in my field of study (Engineering). Norway is the second largest producer of oil, and the fourth largest producer of natural gas. There are excellent universities in Norway, which could help me acquire new academic knowledge. Besides, I wanted to know a different culture to obtain and share experiences.
– Why did you choose the institution you were at?
I chose University of Bergen because there are several courses here that fit the profile of knowledge I desire to acquire.
– What was your idea of Norway before you arrived?
Before arrived I used to think about Norway as a ‘good and cold’ country. Today I see Norway as an amazing place to live, with a high quality of life, polite people and excellent universities.
– Which are the main differences from your country when it comes to your life as a student?
In my home country, we spend more time in lectures. In Norway, I spend most of the time studying by myself. This way of studying has made me learn how to teach myself and be more disciplined. Now, when I am at class, I want to absorb the maximum wisdom of my teachers. I believe this is the right way to turn a student into a good professional.
– In your opinion, what is the most important academic outcome as an international student in Norway?
The most important result of being an exchange student was that I got the opportunity to experience a different academic environment, with another way to learn and teach. I could take different classes from the ones they have at my home university, and I had the opportunity to expand my knowledge.
– Are there any personal experiences as a foreign student in Norway you would highlight?
In Norway, I’ve gotten to know a new world. Almost everything here is different from my home country, so I’ve the opportunity to get many new experiences. I learned that Norwegians have a healthier life style and practice sports regularly. I also learned to appreciate the quality of life. Here I know people from the whole world and it is amazing to share experiences with other students and to make new friends. As a student, I have become more disciplined.
– What would you tell students from your country about university life in Norway?
The university life in Norway is as good as in Brazil. The relationship between students and teachers is close and everybody wants to help you. So don’t worry, don’t be scared. Studying in another country is a great opportunity to open your mind to a new world, and I recommend it to all students.
– What do you miss the most when you are away from your own country?
The main thing is the food. I think the food represents the biggest part of a country's culture. The smell of a Brazilian coffee take me back to home, as if I am with my family, drinking coffee and eating corn bread in the afternoon.
– In your opinion, what is the most important outcome of being an international student?
I think that we should make the most of opportunities we have. Since coming here, I’ve realized that the world is so big and that there are many things to do and so many people to get to know. We shouldn’t spend time feeling insecure and afraid. The world needs to be discovered and all the knowledge we acquire as an exchange student will be useful in our professional life.
– What are you doing now? What are your future plans?
Right now I’m finishing the autumn semester. I’m learning Norwegian and before I go back to Brazil, I will try to get an internship in a company in Norway.