The University of Groningen is a top 100 university with a
great employability rating , and all the information I found on the
city and Dutch culture really appealed to me. In Spain, the
university atmosphere is quite laid-back and I missed learning in a
motivating environment. Back home, students don't take the first
year particularly serious, but here people are really pushing for
top marks. Groningen is a university city, and being around other
students wherever you go makes it easier to feel at home, and to
stay motivated to study hard.
I had done some scientific research when I studied
Psychology in Málaga and hoped to find a similar opportunity
in Groningen. Computing Science makes you think in an analytical,
logical way, and although it's tough, I really enjoy it. I have
worked hard, and got into the Honours College, a group consisting
of the top 10% of students. We are allowed to take extra classes,
both in and outside of the faculty, and are invited to do research.
I guess the Dutch mentality of trying to get the most out of your
studies rubbed off on me.
I really enjoy the student life here. Classes are
focused on practice and examples rather than the dry theory, and
the lecturers know how to share their knowledge in a concise,
focused way. They all speak English well, which is great, but I
would probably advise prospect students to learn a little bit of
Dutch too. Although everyone speaks English in the Netherlands, it
can be difficult to find a part-time job if you have no knowledge
Fortunately, Dutch people are very direct, and it is easy to
make friends. There is so much to do and see in Groningen: I spend
my afternoons in the park, or go to one of the many activities
hosted by the international students. You hear the most amazing
stories: I have met more interesting people from all over the world
in these six months than I have in my entire life.