Testimonial - MSc in Geology-Geoscience – University of Copenhagen

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Don't hesitate!

My biggest problem in Denmark is that everybody speaks English and so I'll never learn Danish. And it's a bit of a joke for a geology student to choose a country like Denmark, so far from the rocks and so close to the chalk, ha ha! But it was the right decision.

Ben Townend, from England, is studying geology.

I got an Erasmus scholarship from the EU to spend a year at Copenhagen as part of my BSc. If possible I would like to come back to do a PhD when I have finished my last year at Birmingham. I can say that already. I wanted to study in Europe, and I'd never been to Scandinavia. So when some mates suggested Denmark and Copenhagen I had a look at the University of Copenhagen website. I checked out the courses and a few articles written by people from Copenhagen in various scientific journals. The ranking looked good, and so did the courses and visiting professors from countries like the UK, Canada, and New Zealand. It all looked good. But it was personal contact with the geology coordinator at the University of Copenhagen that made up my mind. I got loads of help. And after quite a few issues with paperwork and misunderstandings, not from the University of Copenhagen, but mainly from my own university in Birmingham, a week before term started there I stood with four suitcases at Copenhagen Airport with nowhere to live. But I did have a mate from England who lived in Copenhagen and he let me stay at his for a bit. I ended up staying in four different places in three months, but now I've moved in with an old lady. She's a nursery school teacher and I have taken over her daughter's bedroom, as her daughter has left home. It's a great room and she's a really nice landlady. I've been living there nearly a year now and I really like it.

I get on with the Danes although of course I don't know what they're saying behind my back, ha ha! Everybody speaks English here. There are plenty of social activities, at the University and also in the city. I do a lot of stuff at the Union. It's a meeting place in the city centre where foreign students, Danish students and other people get together. I work on the bar. And I DJ there because I love music. And there are concerts there too, including concerts as part of the Copenhagen Jazz Festival, when there is music all over the city.

Copenhagen is a great city in every way. I feel really at home here. It's a good place to get around by bike or bus. Everything works. And it has the benefits of a city as regards what's on, but it isn't vast like London, where you can spend years without meeting anyone you know. Copenhagen's not like that. Here you meet people you know. Including a whole bunch of people from England who've moved to Copenhagen and whom I've gotten to know.

My advice is that if you're thinking of studying at the University of Copenhagen, don't hesitate: get in touch with the University. And another thing to think about: most of the classes on my course consist of small groups, so you will get to know your fellow students well from day one, and you'll have loads of opportunities to socialise in your spare time if you choose Copenhagen.