My exchange semester at the Jönköping University in Sweden.
Before, during and after my exchange semester in Sweden, a lot of friends and family from back home asked me: “Where in Sweden are you studying now?” and my answer was: “In Jönköping – it’s pronounced somewhat like ‘yœn-shœ-ping’ and it is a city between Stockholm and Gothenburg near a large lake.”
Exactly at this lake, the lake Vättern, the exchange semester started literally with a “jump into the cold water”. During the ‘Kick-Off Week’, an introduction week for all new students, the water was approximately 16 degrees and we had a lot of activities on the beach, in the lake and in the city centre. The students were split up into groups depending on their department and subject at the University. Therefore, there were about 150 international engineering students who spent the whole week together and we often met during the semester as well to further develop our friendship.
The flexible time scaling of the projects also made it possible to save time for leisure activities and travelling. I visited Gothenburg, Stockholm, Bergen, Oslo, Tallinn, St. Petersburg and Helsinki. During this time, I hiked a glacier, embarked on a husky sled ride and rode a snowmobile. I was able to share these experiences with other students from all over the world, who thereby became friends.
The semester abroad was a valuable, positive experience for me and I would like to encourage all those who think of spending a semester abroad to do so.