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Sweden easier for students?

Fredde
post 11.Feb.2006, 01:27 PM
Post #16
Joined: 13.Dec.2005

QUOTE (Leonard)
A few points.

I didn't read all the mumbojumbo above because people wrote so much.

- Most people on this website complaining about integration are people that don't speak Swedsih - hence the English news page - so don't worry about that

- Studying a international master's degree in sweden is not the same as studying a master's degree in the USA - they are not the same at all - a master's degree in sweden is basically the last 2 years of a bachelors degree

- It is easy to meet people at university but it will be much easier if you start in Sept then in Jan. In Sept everyone is new and hence want to meet new people.


Correction: International MBA programs may have quality concerns. If you go for a MEng (CivilIngegor) or MA Economics (Civilekonom) you get a kickass education. I would only really recommend Handels in Stockholm if you want international recog and also excellent networking. There is a factory style pipeline from Handels feeding the banking sector in the UK as an example.
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Loke
post 11.Feb.2006, 04:28 PM
Post #17
Joined: 26.Oct.2005

[quote="Catchrndry"]Hey all, I've been lurking and carefully reading these forums for awhile. I really don't want to be like another uninformed newbie saying "HAY GUYZ I WANT TO MOVE TO SWEDEN IT SEEMS COOL".

I'm an American engineer, basically looking to do something different. I make a comfortable living yet I feel the urge to shake off my dead suburban soul and take damn risk for once, before I lose all the youth fo my 20s. I think living abroad for about a year would be good sorta character development. And hey, I was quickly enlightened to the fact Sweden has free grad school for dirty foreigners like myself. I've been to Scandanavia for about 3 weeks, 5 of those days in Stockholm. That hardly makes me an knowledgable on anything, but at least I got the flavor.
After reading through most of these threads, the main complaint is the difficulty of true integration.

Honestly? It depends on the language. There are some cultural differences, but I found that once I learnt the language it got a hell of a lot easier. Swedish isn't too hard to learn - it's a germanic language, much like our own beautiful mother tongue, the grammar's fairly simple and most words are spelled phonetically. In the beginning people do have a tendency to reply to one's feeble attempts at Swedish in English, but with time (and practice) it'll come (I remember wishing that the buggers would switch back to English as it made life a hell of a lot easier).

I'm a born and raised US citizen of ethnically Chinese. Will I be treated differently than my fellow Americans?

Nah, you'll be hated for the neo-imperialist swine you are ;-p
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*Catchrndry*
post 12.Feb.2006, 01:56 AM
Post #18


QUOTE (Haz)
its not the cold, its the wet and the dark. The summers are wondeful, they are mild and i think there is a law against girls wearing skirts longer then an inch above the knee. If anything you will find sweden "a change." You will make of it what you will. There is no one who can tell you how you will feel about living in sweden. So what exactly (like in the form of a list) are you looking to get out of sweden, and what exactly (also in the form of a list) do you think sweden and the swedes are like.


Considering I live in an area that gets perhaps the most sunlight out of anywhere in the populated world, and hasn't rained in 3 months...

What I would like to get out of Sweden:
-learn about a new culture and adopt some of their lifestyle and perspectives.
-passable social life.
-decent relatively free education.
-the intangibles that come with being thrown somewhere unfamiliar.

What I think Swedes are like:
-liberal
-polite
-quiet to strangers, outwardly stoic even to friends
-difficult to get to know personally, even more difficult without language skills
-will not initiate socially
-helpful if approached
-pragmatic
-non spiritual

The Scandanavian place I've stayed longest was Iceland, and I think their reputation for friendly xenophobia is larger than the Swedes. People would pass without so much as a nod of acknowledgement, but if for example I ever got lost and asked for directions though were more than helpful.


QUOTE (Dev)
I think there's a management school called Handels in Göteborg. Its connected to Göteborg University. All the universities in Sweden have many programmes in English and they are all at the Masters level as far as I know. Just check out their web sites for International Master's programs. I did my Masters in Dependable Computer Science. My personal opinion is that Chalmers is very good for Computer Science, Automotive Engineering , Fluid Dynamics etc and there are lots of engineering companies in this area so these courses have a pretty good support. I think if you are looking for a change and experiencing something different its good to just go on and do a course here. Even if you don't stay here long term its not a waste of time. And of course you are in Europe so you may spend time travelling around Europe during your study as well Wink Don't count on getting part time jobs out of school here , its very difficult and knowing Swedish for that is almost a must.


I really have no desire at this point work in Sweden, considering I haven't spent more than 4 days there. I've found their degrees very strange, even after their various "conversion to US degree charts". For example, in the US or UK, a degree may be called simply "Master of Science in Project Management". I don't think that exists in Sweden, they would call it like "Masters of Management in Personnel Development and Marketing of Technical Projects" or something needlessly wordy. Is there degree of "Master of Business Adminstration in (Insert subfield here), really the equivalent of an MBA?


QUOTE (Leonard)
A few points.

I didn't read all the mumbojumbo above because people wrote so much.

- Most people on this website complaining about integration are people that don't speak Swedsih - hence the English news page - so don't worry about that

- Studying a international master's degree in sweden is not the same as studying a master's degree in the USA - they are not the same at all - a master's degree in sweden is basically the last 2 years of a bachelors degree

- It is easy to meet people at university but it will be much easier if you start in Sept then in Jan. In Sept everyone is new and hence want to meet new people.


Even though you didn't read much of the above you seem to hit my questions pretty well. I am most willing to learn Swedish, but from reading this message board and others, that seems to do little good for any stay less than 4 years.
Yeah, the 40-60 ECT master's degrees seem more equivalent to "Graduate Level Certificates" you see in the US. I think I have enough education currently, anything else would sort of be icing on the cake. An MBA would really be the only "useful" degree I could attain if I were to maintain my current career route.

Start in Sept vs. Jan was the answer to one of my main questions. The deadline has already passed for Fall Term applications at this point and I doubt if I can get all my personal crap together by August. Its unfortuate I may have to wait another year and half, if I don't apply for January term. Do any colleges have a large intake in Spring Semester?

QUOTE (Wilding)
If you want to do an MBA in Sweden, make sure you check out its credentials thoroughly first - there have been problems in the past. Check out these stories for an explanation:

http://www.thelocal.se/article.php?ID=711&date=20041208

http://www.thelocal.se/article.php?ID=738&date=20041216

I have not studied in Sweden, so I only have 2nd hand information about what it is like, but I get the impression that social life around Stockholm University is perhaps less lively than around, say, Lund or Uppsala. It seems that many people at Stockholm are Stockholmers, live there with their partners and therefore don't socialize as much within the university. Uppsala and Lund have more social activity centred around the universities themselves, and might therefore be more welcoming for foreigners.

I hear too that Chalmers has a very good social life.


Thanks your info really helped a lot. Besides being difficult to navigate and rather poorly organized, I had little sense of what any of the colleges and their reputations would be from just their websites. I would have thought that Stockholm University would have been the most lively. As I stated I'm not going to party it up every night, but I don't want to be sitting by myself in a flat every day. Do other people agree with his assesment of the "welcoming to foreigners" situation? It seems not many Swedish Univeristies have a "campus" per se where life revolves around like in the US.

QUOTE (Loke)
Nah, you'll be hated for the neo-imperialist swine you are ;-p


Great, I'll hide the fact that I'm a defense contractor right now.
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*Zlimness*
post 14.Feb.2006, 08:28 PM
Post #19


Being a student is probably your best bet if you want to get close to swedes. But if you're attending a international course, you'll most likely not meet any of them at the uni. Someone mentioned clubs, and that's one good way of integrating. But I don't think anyone mentioned the definite way of getting to know real swedes in an enviornment that really suits them: Dorms. Swedes are keen on their own privacy sure, but the way things work in the dorms, you'll meet lots of people who choose the dorm because of how close you live with other students.

It's really important that the corridor you choose to live in has a shared kitchen though, otherwise you'll most likely just see your neighbors zipping through, just saying "hi". People who want to be left alone generally look for this kind of dorm, while more social students look for dorms with many shared spaces where the students living togheter can socialize.

I'm a native swede myself btw and I moved to Norrköping 8 months ago to study at LIU. Had no friends here whatsoever and the dorm really saved me, since I didn't like too many of my classmates. In the corridor I live in, we're 9 students. one is bosnian, one is italian, one is iranian and the other are from all over Sweden, so you'll likely to meet at least one exhange student or second-generation immigrant whom all speak both english and swedish fluent (except for some of the exchange students of course).

Students are more open-minded, more keen on socializing and are usually among the more "intresting" crop you'll meet in Sweden. And while we are the most internationalized of all the groups, you'll still see old swedish culture from counties all over Sweden.

Anyway I hope you decide to try Sweden for a year and I hope your stay will be pleasant.
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*Catchrndry*
post 15.Feb.2006, 08:53 AM
Post #20


I feel a little guilt from the self-indulgence of this thread. HEY HAY GUYS ADVISE ME and I hope others are gaining insight from it. I want to be a good member and participate in other threads, but I really have nothing useful to add.

It seems like Lund. LIU and Goteborg seem like friendly places for students. You mentioned living in a dorm. Man, I've been out of college for 4 years now, I couldn't imagine sharing a room again. I mean if its your own room and common areas that seems great. But also, I'm 26 and will probably be even older if I decide to go to school (and grad school at that). Would I seem out of place and the "strange old guy"?

The more I read and learn about Swedes (I really learned nothing in my week in Stockholm about the true culture), the more I feel I am similiar to them in personality. Also, the ads for Sweden remind me a lot of tourist ads for Arizona. Open spaces, plenty of nature, but punctuated by very modern metropolises. Generally quiet but friendly people, I don't know if this is a good thing or not.
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Haz
post 15.Feb.2006, 09:07 AM
Post #21
Joined: 5.Sep.2005

do you like being alone when you around people?
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Alfredo
post 15.Feb.2006, 09:28 AM
Post #22
Joined: 1.Dec.2005

Sweden is a great place for students ...

At least it always used to be, because tuition fees were free, accommodation was cheap, and so was the student entertainment (ie. beer) ...

Not sure, how much of this is still true,
because I was a student here in 1992 !
Rock and roll ...
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Haz
post 15.Feb.2006, 10:02 AM
Post #23
Joined: 5.Sep.2005

well tution is still free. so that about does it for what is still true.
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*Brathair / Don't Be Lagom*
post 15.Feb.2006, 07:11 PM
Post #24


Nothing is free.
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*Catchrndry*
post 15.Feb.2006, 10:57 PM
Post #25


QUOTE (Haz)
do you like being alone when you around people?


I prefer a balance, but I'd rather be around people than alone if I had to pick one.
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*Brathair / Don't Be Lagom*
post 16.Feb.2006, 02:47 AM
Post #26


Holden,

I think he means that being around Swedes is like being alone. (i.e. Swedes = vegetables)

Do you enjoy being alone even though there are "people" around you?
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*Catchrndry*
post 16.Feb.2006, 06:59 AM
Post #27


That's a very Zen question. Somtimes its reassuring sometimes its annoying to be around someone and not have them acknowledge you. This is good though, I'm really learning quite a bit.
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Haz
post 16.Feb.2006, 12:13 PM
Post #28
Joined: 5.Sep.2005

Oddly, i feel that sweden's slow pace is, maybe not equally likely, but it is possible that a stay here could expedite personal growth or hinder it. I was having a conversation the other day at how little excitement i have in my studies these days. I feel i could sit around and do nothing for a long time. "Ambition impossible." I could blame the wheather. But some people like the slow pace, sweden can makes you soft. That is soft on ambition and hard in personality. If you want to slow down your life then sweden is the place to be. If you want to use the emerstion into a new and dynamic the expedite character growth, then sweden is not the place.

I can tell you are less interested in studying. Thats ok because you can be as relax as you want and get by. Not that the courses are easy, but that there is just alot of time to get anything you could want done.
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*Catchrndry*
post 17.Feb.2006, 07:53 AM
Post #29


well, yes I am less interested. As I said, I just want to experience a new lifestyle and maybe get something out of it, like an education. My main fear at this point is feeling socially isolated. That's all. I've been to Sweden before and I loved it, but I was a backpacker for 4-5 days. once again I really appreciate all the advice you guys have given me.
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Haz
post 17.Feb.2006, 08:01 AM
Post #30
Joined: 5.Sep.2005

QUOTE
My main fear at this point is feeling socially isolated.


This will be the case to some extent in any other country and to a large extent in sweden.
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