Ekaterina Zhdanovich and Ilya Efremov completed an exchange program at the University of Helsinki.
In the fall semester, we studied exchange at the University of Helsinki.
We have already heard many stories from the guys who went on this program. But due to coronavirus restrictions, things turned out to be a little different.
Campuses were closed and training was conducted remotely. Despite this, the training was very well organized. At lectures and practices, the teacher interacted with students constantly. For example, a teacher conducted surveys to get feedback. 1-2 times per lecture, students were assigned to small groups of 3-4 people, where we discussed issues or solved tasks based on the material covered.
The university also organized many interesting distance events, which are usually held in full-time format.
We lived in a student hostel, each person had his own fairly large room in the apartment, where there is a common area – a kitchen, a living room and a large terrace. Each house has a laundry and a free sauna.
Despite distance learning, we had good English practice because we talked a lot with students from other countries.
Helsinki is a wonderful city. Here nature and a well-organized urban environment are combined. Finns are very responsible about the situation with the coronavirus, they wear masks both in stores and on the street.
Finland is a very expensive country, one of the most expensive in Europe. But there are many discounts for students here – you can dine at the museum, shops, cafes, a student cafe for 3 euros.
Due to the coronavirus, many restrictions have been introduced. Unfortunately, we were unable to fly to other countries and attend the events that were held at the beginning of the training, as we were in quarantine.
But despite the limitations, it was a great experience – to live in another country, to study at a foreign university. Of course, there were some difficulties, but we coped with them.
If you are in doubt whether it is worth participating in the exchange program or not, it is definitely worth it, it will be a good experience anyway.