Exchange Student Testimonial
Marina Fateeva, a student of the Institute of Philology (“English Language and Literature, German Language”), became a participant of the exchange program and studied at Tampere University (Finland) in the 2019/20 academic year.
Marina attended courses in English, Linguistics, Finnish, and studied culture and communication-related disciplines.
“First of all, I was surprised by the opportunity to choose courses and build up my schedule. Starting from school, we are used to the fact that curriculum and schedule are made by someone in advance. In Finland and many other countries, students choose courses, sign up (and make it in time) and make a convenient schedule because some courses are conducted simultaneously. If you don’t like a chosen course, you can quit it with no sanctions. After all, everyone is responsible for their education. Your main goal is to complete compulsory courses (this rule is applied to undergraduate and graduate students) and to gain the necessary number of credits,” said the student about the specifics of the educational process.
The rapid spread of COVID-19 did not interrupt the educational process. Some classes were conducted in Zoom, for other courses students had to read lectures and to complete tasks. Exams were also held in the remote mode.
There are some features in communication with teachers.
“All teachers are helpful and friendly. At Tampere University I had a feeling that both students and teachers are colleagues who stride to one goal – to gain knowledge and skills,” Marina noted.
The girl also shared her feelings about study space organizing and other social services at the university.
“It is organized simply but modernly and conveniently. There is free Wi-Fi; many cozy places for individual work; a gym, a subscription to which is inexpensive; a large library; many computer classes and printers, located all over the campuses. The university has a medical center, where you can go in case you feel unwell. Lunch in canteens will cost you around three Euros with a student card. At Finnish universities canteens work at weekends, so students can no longer bother themselves with cooking”
Student life is not limited to studies at the university. There are many projects and events in which international students can participate.
“As I am concerned with waste sorting and recycling, I took part in one of the projects of the Demola international organization. I joined a team of students from different countries and we sought ways of resolving the problem of promoting waste sorting and worked with a local company, engaged in waste collection and treatment”, told Marina.
Marina also noted that during the year she has spent in Finland she has had absolutely no issues with not speaking Finnish.
“There is nothing to worry about, after all, many Finns, especially young generation, speak English fluently”
You can learn more about exchange programs and opportunities to participate in the Exchange Programs Division of PetrSU.