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The city of Gothenburg is very clean and everything is well organised
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Merle Raven went on an exchange semester to Sweden

Merle Raven from the Erasmus University Rotterdam who is studying BSc Economics and Business Economics came to Gothenburg and spent one semester as an exchange student at the School of Business, Economics and Law

How did you hear about the School of Business, Economics and Law?
-When I decided to go on exchange, I had a look at the list with all the different countries and universities we could go to. Handelshögskolan was one of those universities. The first thing I looked at was the time schedule, and whether the semester matched with my home university. Many countries and universities were therefore not an option for me, because the time schedule did not match. After this selection, many Scandinavian universities were left. I had only been to Scandinavia once before, so for me it was the perfect opportunity to explore more of Scandinavia. There were many reasons why I decided to choose Gothenburg. The first reason is the fact that Gothenburg is a port city, which makes any city absolutely beautiful and creates a great atmosphere. Secondly, the university of Gothenburg could provide housing, which was also quite important to me. Thirdly, the supply of courses was large, there were many interesting courses you could choose from. And lastly, from Gothenburg it is really easy to travel to other countries, like Denmark and Norway!

How was the introduction and the start of your semester here?
-In my opinion, the introduction and the start of my semester was great. Handelshögskolan organized many activities for incoming exchange students. However, before the introduction period, I met many students from other faculties. Their faculties organized an introduction week all together, however, 
Handelshögskolan had their own separate introduction week. For me this was a bit unfortunate. I would have liked it a bit more to experience the introduction period with all the different faculties. However, it was still nice that Handelshögskolan organized so many activities for their students, and it was a great opportunity to meet students from the same faculty!

There were many international students and everyone could speak English very well. Moreover, everyone was very motivated, the education level was high so this also lead to very motivated students

How is the atmosphere at the School?
-I think the atmosphere was very good and very international. There were many international students and everyone could speak English very well. Moreover, everyone was very motivated, the education level was high so this also lead to very motivated students.

How was your social life as an exchange student at the School?
-I met many international students, and my room-mates were also studying at Handelshögksolan. So, my social life was good. I also met new students at the School since we had to do some group projects.

What are the teachers like?
-I think the teachers were very nice, they knew how to motivate the students and they were very knowledgeable. Also their level of English was very good, which made it easy to follow and understand their explanations.

I followed a course for international students about the economic history of Scandinavia, and I would recommend other students to follow such courses as well. It is an opportunity you won’t get at your home school, it’s very nice to learn about the economic history of the country you are studying in

If you could give any tips to future exchange students, what would you share?
-I followed a course for international students about the economic history of Scandinavia, and I would recommend other students to follow such courses as well. It is an opportunity you won’t get at your home school. It is very interesting to learn about the economic history of the country you are studying in and you also have the opportunity to meet many international students during those courses. 

How did you solve your housing situation?
- I applied for housing in time, and therefore I received a housing offer. I could choose a place where I would like to stay during my exchange, so I did this immediately. I heard from other exchange students that I should stay in Olofshöjd if possible, so I decided to choose this accommodation. And I can tell you now, 
I am so happy I was able to stay there! The housing was amazing. There were so many international students staying there, so it was very easy to meet others and spend a lot of time with all the students!

The city of Gothenburg is very clean and everything is well organised. You can go anywhere by tram so it’s easy to go to many places in the city without a bike or car. 

What was your experience of life in Gothenburg?
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It was amazing! The country is really beautiful. The surroundings and the nature in Gothenburg are amazing. The city itself is also very nice. There are for example many parks where you can go to to have a walk, and as I said before, I also like the fact that Gothenburg situated next to the sea. The city has some beautiful islands as well. Gothenburg is also very clean and everything is well organized. You can go anywhere by tram, so it is easy to go to all the different places without a bike or car. 

How was it to live here and not speak Swedish?
-It was no problem at all! Everyone I spoke could speak English very well. In the stores and restaurants the level of English was also very good, so that was not a problem at all!

Your favourite memory from your time as an exchange student?
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Definitely the trip to Swedish Lappland. I never experienced anything like that before, with the amazing Northern Lights, snow scooters and the huskies. It was amazing to experience this with a group of international students from all over the world. 

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Merle Raven liked the combination of nature and city life in Gothenburg
Merle made many new friends during her exchange semester
Merle Raven applied for an exchange semester at the University of Gothenburg
Merle Raven spent the autumn semester at the School of Business, Economics and Law.