As a Danish girl in Australia I quickly got used to share my title with this delicious, creamy, pastry from the bakery: a Danish. It looks and taste a lot like a ‘Vienna bread’ as we call it, ironically enough.
It’s all sweet and good, and it’s actually not the worst thing to be associated with when you mention your nationality. Plus! They taste yummy.
Are you curious to know what your name, nationality or favourite slang might be perceived as or compared with in another country or are you simply looking to get an awesome experience? Go study abroad. I know I have recommended it earlier, but I really do believe that it is beneficial for everyone: you, your country, the country you choose to go to and your future workplace. The only disadvantages is that its not free and you have to spend many hours of planning before you can actually go. It can be a very time consuming process and cost you sweat, tears and frustrations, but once you have everything sorted it is all worth it.
When you look back on your life, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do, more than the ones you did.
– H. Jackson Brown
I have done some research for you and here is a list of the exchange universities La Trobe has teamed up with. The list is long (over 100 universities) so I recommend you to decide which countries you would like to go to first and in that way, exclude other universities.
Before you can go you need to have completed at least one year of your degree and make sure that you will receive the right amount of credit points for the subjects you choose. If you apply for an exchange study you must meet minimum requirements such as no fail grades and a minimum course average grade of 65%.
If you choose a Scandinavian country from the list I will give you a short insight of what you can expect. First off, if you want to experience the biggest climate change you should go in January. This is the coldest month in Scandinavia and everything might be covered in snow. After a couple of months with woollen sweaters and red noses you will notice this sudden change. From the moment where the snow starts to melt and everything turns into colours, this magical transformation happens in our culture and an overwhelming joy appears in every Scandi’s eyes.
Spring is my favourite season. This is the time where you will start to see a lot of white, almost transparent, legs and arms everywhere. When the temperature reach 15 degrees we will proudly roll out our barbecues, squeeze into our swimsuits and dust off the patio. We are very stubborn and eager when it comes to summer in Denmark. We just want it to be summer so bad, that in April we just can’t wait any longer.
This is when we all become Vikings and will go to the beach and pretend that the water is amazingly warm. Invite the neighbours over for a barbecue dinner (outside off course). Sit outside all night with a bonfire, wrapped in as many blankets as possible. Go to outdoor cafés and fight over the spot nearest the electric heater. This way we get five months of summer, instead of four.
The school-system is very similar, except most subjects at our universities don’t have attendance. The lectures are generally more theoretically based in Scandinavia. We have the same expectation, as here in Australia, for students to be active, when they attend classes. If you think getting an extension is a piece of cake, you will be surprised. It’s almost impossible to get an extension on your assignments in Denmark.
I don’t think the culture is that different from the Australian. However, I see Australians as very open-hearted people compared to us, but when I meet people who have travelled in Denmark they say that it’s such an amazing little place and that people are so friendly. Maybe we just like tourists better, I don’t know. In Denmark the words darling, sweetheart or hun means a lot to us and we hold on to them for someone we love. So don’t be disappointed if no one calls you sweetheart, love, hun etc during your stay. This doesn’t mean that we don’t like you.
Before I came to Australia I had never been called darling or love by a checkout girl in the supermarket. If you called a Dane this, they would probably blush and think you were flirting with them. Maybe that’s why we love tourist better.