Could you tell us the main reasons for choosing Norway as your study destination?
“Before going to Norway I had been living in Iceland and Finland, and I knew that I wanted to stay in Scandinavia. The University of Oslo seemed to be the best option with regards to study programs and subjects. After reading various reviews about Norway, I got even more confident about choosing Norway as my next destination.”
Why did you choose the institution you were at?
“During my bachelor’s studies, the University of Oslo was named one of the leading universities in the media field. I got even more eager to study at UiO after I saw that they offered a new program – Nordic Media. As I am very passionate about the Nordic countries, I had no doubts that I wanted to participate in this study programme.”
What was your idea about Norway before you arrived?
“Firstly, Oslo seemed like one a European metropolis, where it would be possible to see contrasts. Secondly, as I have been living in Iceland, I had the impression that I would also see never ending mountains and experience pure nature in Norway.”
Which are the main differences from your country when it comes to your life as a student?
“In my opinion, students in Norway have more clearly defined goals as to why they want to study. Most of the students are doing their studies not because they need a diploma or a certificate, but because they are very keen on educating themselves. The University of Oslo offers many different facilities that students can use after lectures. Very often students can get private rooms where they can stay and study in. Students are even encouraged to come to the University to use these facilities during the weekends, nights, or whenever it is needed.”
In your opinion, what is the most important academic outcome as an international student in Norway?
“At the University of Oslo, students are allowed to choose the field on which they want to focus the most. There are almost no limits, every idea is highly appreciated and discussed. Each evaluation which is provided gives a description about your strengths and weaknesses and consequently it is possible to analyse your work from a more critical point of view. Professors in Norway inspire and encourage students a lot. After living and studying in this country, you feel like you are a better person.”
Are there any personal experiences as a foreign student in Norway you would highlight?
“I was very lucky because I had amazing study friends. We were often attending or organizing events and excursions. One of my best memories is the Norwegian national day, May 17th. It is an amazing day and I encourage everyone at least once to go to Norway in May and celebrate it with Norwegians.”
“Before I left Norway, a few students from our course went for a trip. During these weeks we were spending time in the fjords and exploring Norway – fishing, hiking in the mountains, riding bikes and tasting different Norwegian delicacies.”
What would you tell students from your country about university life in Norway?
“The University of Oslo is very well organized and innovative. As my department was small, it was very easy to reach the staff and discuss all issues concerning my studies. The researchers and academics working at the university are in general very professional, and it is always possible to learn something new from them. In my department, students also had a common space for their leisure activities, where we could play video games, watch TV or just read a magazine and drink coffee. With this space it was possible to make yourself at home and resume your studies refreshed.”
What did you miss the most when you were away from your own country?
“What I missed the most was my family and friends. But at the same time as I am used to being away from home, and so I try to overcome it by, for example, using more technologies in order to communicate with my family and friends.”
In your opinion, what is the most important outcome of being an international student?
“As an international student you get the experience of building your life “from zero”. I mean, it is a big challenge to meet new people and build true friendships, and to adapt to a new environment. Being an international student develops your communication skills, raise your self-awareness and motivates you to reach new goals.”
What are you doing now?
“Right now I am living and working in Helsinki, Finland. I am working in the Communication field and at the same time completing my Master’s Thesis.”
What are your future plans?
“I am quite careful not to reveal my future plans, but one thing I can say is that my plans won’t lead me far away from the Nordic countries. Once you get here, it is hard to leave the region. The Nordic countries are something special to me.”