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Why Studying Abroad in Sweden at KTH Might NOT Be for You

Hello everybody and welcome to today’s post! The sun is shining in Stockholm and Summer is getting closer: meaning that you are close than ever to starting your KTH journey! After discovering why studying at KTH might be for you, it is time to shed light on why it might not be for you instead. Let’s get started!

A friend of mine standing in the middle of a frozen lake
Nature can be lovely during Winter as well!

1. You are really weather-sensitive

The number one reason why studying in Sweden might not be for you is if you find cold temperatures and moody weather unbearable. Let me get this straight right away: the Swedish Winter can be beautiful, and I honestly think that it is often victim of unnecessary hatred and criticism. It allows you to do things that would be impossible to do anywhere else, like skating on a frozen lake or cross-country ski in a natural reserve (even for free!). However, it cannot be denied that Swedish winters tend to be long, dark and cold, so you’ll have to find ways to embrace it.

Picture of a snowy Stockholm street during the night
Yes, it snows in Stockholm. Sometimes. A lot.

Coming from northern Italy, I feel like it’s not that big of a deal for me. Of course, none of us like cold temperatures and cloudy weather, but if you can live with it in your home country, then you can probably live with it in Sweden as well.

If you have the possibility, it may be a good idea to visit Stockholm during the Winter: it may help you make up your mind! I also suggest you use the “Search” function of our blog to find previous articles on the matter (you can find it at the bottom of the page if you are reading from your mobile phone or on the right if you are reading from your laptop).

Frozen lake in the middle of Stockholm
This Winter was particularly cold and this meant that the Stockholm archipelago was frozen!

Ultimately, everything is subjective and we are all unique regarding how meteoropathic we are. Do you often feel sad during the winter? Do you spend half of the year waiting for summer to come back? Can you withstand spending a lot of time inside during winter? These are some examples of questions you may ask yourself before coming here!

2. You don’t like group work

In the blog, we have discussed extensively how it is to study at KTH (again, you are welcome to use the search bar!). One aspect that we have often stressed is how project-oriented KTH is. Many courses have project work and home assignments, and you are often encouraged to collaborate with other students in small groups. Some courses even require long group projects as a final examination, instead of more traditional written or oral tests.

A group visit to Stockholm Exergi
A group visit to a Stockholm company for an Energy Technology course

I find this study method very enrichingand useful for building a competitive CV or portfolio, but I do realise it may not be for everyone. When performing group work, a great deal of your energy is not spent towards achieving the project goal but may be employed in discussing with the other group members, organising the group sessions, and writing emails and presentations. It can also require a great deal of patience in case you happen to be in a group with people with different work habits than you.

Once again, everything comes down to personal preference. I do believe that group work really well prepares you for your future professional endeavours while also giving you the chance to meet new people and spend less time alone (which could help during winter).

Let me know in the comments what you think!

3. You are more of a “city guy”

Don’t get me wrong: Stockholm is a big European capital with TONS of activities and places to see. As a student, you get to enjoy many discounts and you have different places to hang out, both within the campus (ever heard about pub crawls? 😏) and in the city centre. However, I do believe that you will thrive in Stockholm particularly if you are a nature lover.

A picture of a Stockholm square with some skyscrapers
Hötorget square during Winter

Stockholm is a city on the water, with tons of islands and parks all around it waiting to be explored. Additionally, most of the city’s most peculiar activities (in my opinion) are connected to nature: from kayaking to skiing, Stockholm is a paradise for nature lovers – but may turn out to be a bit boring if you are not interested in nature and crave a more “urban lifestyle”, with tons of clubs open all night and a more chaotic vibe.

As the Swedish say, Stockholm is very “lagom”: not too much, not too little, but just the right amount of buzzing city vibes.

Picture of a park alongside water
Can you imagine that parks like this are within a 20-minute commute to KTH?

That was all for today: as always, thank you for following me along. As summer approaches, the Instagram and blog schedule will vary a little, so make sure to subscribe to keep up with all the updates.

Remember to check Sai’s post on the essentials to start at KTH and Sam’s post on this year’s Kulturnatt (speaking of events…).

See you in the next post!

// Lorenzo

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