Hygge December 18, 2022

By (Economics, Brandeis University) - abroad from 08/20/2022 to 12/16/2022 with

DIS Copenhagen: Semester

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I definitely learned a lot from my course. It was also cool to live in a different country and learn to plan a budget or travel on my own. It just made me become a more independent person. I do think it's very worthwhile.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Overall I think this is a good study abroad program. Lots of field study and study tour opportunities in which you get to know and learn from different professional people.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I was living in Stads Kollegium near Amagerbro. It was quite close to DIS and the city center (15-20 mins by bus or metro). I shared a room with another American girl and there were also two Danish girls in our apartment, and everyone was just so friendly. We shared a kitchen and a bathroom, and the laundry room was in the basement. It would be much easier if you download the laundry app and reserve the washer in advance.

* Food:

People living in kollegium got a stipend card for purchasing supplies. There were also many cafes near DIS, although the price could be a bit expensive.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

We learned a lot about Danish history and culture in class, but in daily life I didn't really feel integrated with the local culture. I do wish DIS could do better in cultural integration and provide more opportunities for experiencing local activities.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Denmark provides free healthcare for citizens and long-stay residents. I didn't use my healthcare card this semester but it's still good to know that.

* Safety:

Copenhagen is perhaps one of the safest cities in Europe. I feel completely comfortable going out even late at night in the city.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

Overall I really enjoyed studying and living in Copenhagen. It's a cozy city with friendly people and convenient public transport. Arctic geopolitics and development economics are my favorite classes. I really liked that we had the opportunity to visit different companies, think tanks, and nonprofits during our study tours and field trips.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

The cost of living in Copenhagen could be higher than at home. I feel like the price level was more or less the same as in Boston but much higher than in my home state Maine.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

We were required to take Danish 123, which is just some basic expressions like how to order food or what I usually do during the week. Danish is very hard to pronounce though, and I rarely had the opportunity to speak Danish outside of Danish class because most Danes would think I wasn't from this country and speak English to me.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Try to talk more with your Danish roommates or host family in Danish. Danish is difficult, and most Danes know that. They will be happy to see people learning their language and will help you improve your pronunciation.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Study tour and field trip
  • Variety of class
  • Location
* What could be improved?
  • Cultural integration
  • Volunteer opportunies
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Budget planning is very important. Also, I didn't really like my core class, so if I had a second chance, I would probably take an IR class instead of Econ. It's not because the class was bad though, it just wasn't for me.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Arctic Geopolitics

Course Department: IR
Instructor: Alexander Hviid
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This is my favorite class of the semester. Alexander is definitely a great professor. He really knows how to teach students and get everyone engaged. We got to learn a lot about arctic affairs: the Arctic Council, A7 countries, Denmark-Greenland relations, Arctic Indigenous people, etc. Honestly there's nothing I can complain about this class.
Credit Transfer Issues: