Rohit from India
Why did you choose your programme?
"After completing my undergraduate studies, I tried hard to figure out what I wanted to pursue. This involved ranking different subject areas on a scale of 1-10, trying to figure out my most preferred area of study. This was how I came to decide on Molecular Biology. Furthermore, I got in contact with my seniors from the programme and got to know their take on the subjects and environment at Lund University. So, I would say it’s an amalgamation of interest, enquiring and tons of thought that went into choosing my programme at Lund."
What is the best thing about your programme?
"It’s well balanced between theoretical lectures and experimental lab work and, more often than not, you get to apply what you learned in your lectures to the labs. I have had great friends and amazing lab assistants who are very kind and always motivate me to ask more questions. But this doesn’t mean it is all easy, things do get very busy and it’s great to have a study advisor who you can turn to for advice.
The programme also offers a lot of flexibility between selecting elective courses and doing internships as well. I believe this was really important for me as I was able to acquire a lot of wet lab skills that are necessary to work in labs."
Why should a prospective student choose your programme?
"I believe that this programme is perfect for anyone who is passionate about learning more about molecular biology, as it covers a lot of the basic techniques that you would absolutely need in a lab. They also strike a good balance of introducing you to varied niche research topics like population genetics, statistics, and entrepreneurship. Moreover, new students are provided with student mentors who they can contact for advice or maybe even to hang out! The professors are amazing scientists in their fields, so it’s always nice to get an insight into stellar research while you do the course."
Have you been able to gain any practical experience during your studies?
"Yes, in fact, I opted to perform an applied work instead of an elective course, which gave me a lot of insights into how the lab and the whole biology building worked. I also gained relevant lab skills and got better at planning my day’s work, while networking with PhD and postdocs in the department at the same time. I still use a lot of the skills I gained from my applied work to perform my thesis."
What do you think of the teaching style and relationship with professors in Lund?
"The teaching style reflects what I have generally heard about Sweden and its non-hierarchical classroom structure. Students and professors interact with each other quite freely and there is no pressure of being right all the time or being judged. It is quite accepted that we are students who are here to learn and making mistakes is sometimes a part of that process."
What is it like to be an international student at Lund University?
"I think that the most exciting part about being an international student at Lund University is that you network and mingle with people from all kinds of backgrounds and learn about a multitude of cultures. For me, that was the whole purpose of studying outside of my home country. As an international student, the university offers a lot of activities and helps to get you settled in and feel like you belong. We have Unibuddy Ambassadors and mentor groups that allow new students to reach out to get advice and make new friends as well."
What advice would you give someone who is considering coming to Lund?
"Be prepared for the winter! The weather in Lund is unpredictable, so I would advise you to pack all your winter clothes when you arrive in Lund in the fall or go secondhand shopping when you arrive. Also, read up on the process involved with getting your personal ID and Bank ID. It could get quite hectic for a new student, so it is advisable to brace yourself and be mentally prepared as much as possible. There are a ton of blogs on the Unibuddy page which can give you tips and tricks on how to navigate the Swedish system."
What do you plan to do after your studies?
"After my studies, I hope to stay in Sweden to do a PhD or work in a company. So, I try to network and expand my contacts so that I stay on top of the opportunities available. From a personal perspective, I try to learn new skills and build my repertoire both in the lab and outside. I participate and volunteer in many organisations that help me learn team building and event management skills."