Exciting differences, comforting similarities
Eric Linvill decided to leave the United States for part of his major in Aerospace Engineering at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, and decided that Sweden and KTH was his best option. Once in Stockholm, he found a closely-knit community of exchange students, new cultural codes and some comforting similarities.
Why did you choose to come to KTH?
Aside from the fact that KTH offered all the courses I needed to take for my degree in English, I wanted to go somewhere completely different. I was used to California weather and wanted to experience something new.
What do you like most about KTH?
There are some really awesome teachers here who put in a lot of extra time to apply theory to real-world problems. I really like the community of exchange students; we are all really close. It’s been a lot of fun to get to know and travel with a new friendship group.
Does the course content at KTH correspond with the program you're studying at your home university?
I'm taking graduate courses here so it doesn't quite match up to my undergraduate programme at home. Studying at KTH is more independent and project-based than studying in the United States. It's the same courses, but a different standard is expected. I've enjoyed working in projects here because it feels like you're solving real-world problems.
When I arrived in Sweden I was surprised that I felt at home so quickly. Sweden is different from the US, but there are also many similarities.
What do you find unique about Stockholm?
It's easy to forget that you're in a big city because of all the parks here. And there is always a lot going on – it's almost hard to focus on studying because there is so much to do!
What has surprised you about Sweden as a country?
How long the snow stayed around! Jokes aside, my impression of Sweden was limited to stereotypes; IKEA, vikings, and so on. But when I arrived I was surprised that I felt at home so quickly. Sweden is different from the US, but at the same time there are many similarities.
Describe what it’s like to study at KTH as an exchange students.
Well, the orientation activities by THS International [the international section of the KTH Student union] really helped me get connected with a lot of different people with whom I am still in touch. All these activities were really helpful for me to feel at home and find a new circle of friends in Stockholm.