Elis: studying, living and biking in Denmark

Hi! My name is Elis and about two years ago I thought it was a brilliant idea to apply to studying in Denmark. After submitting in a bunch of papers, doing skype interviews, getting into my top choice school I realised I am actually moving to Aarhus, Denmark.

I am studying an AP degree in Multimedia Design and Communication at Business Academy Aarhus. Behind this long which almost nobody will understand name is a degree where I have learned web design for example designing a website for a mattress company and then later actually making the website, poster/print design by making posters to events in school, creating social media strategy and content for SUP surf agency, idea creation by designing the future wallet and more. After speaking to my favourite teachers Line, Maria and Jeanne I always get inspired no matter the topic.

My school building, which is called the Golden Tooth in really cool light one evening

Weekly we have per average 3 schooldays, but there tends to be more of them in the beginning of the semester and less in the end. A normal school day for me would be having lessons from 8:30 until 14:00.

In one school day, we are covering one topic for example learning how to make a social media strategy. The teacher would present us a topic and most of the time would be spent doing different exercises in groups.

Our lesson free days are meant for doing bigger projects, which are mostly in groups. In these we have a client with a problem, and we will try to solve it using the new things we learned in lessons. To put it lightly we have A LOT of group work.

In Multimedia Design programme we don’t get that many grades, but we get a lot of feedback for our projects form our teachers and classmates, which plays a big role in evolving.

What working on a group project looks like – normally involves lots of post-it’s
Hands on approach for doing projects

Housing, paperwork and working in Denmark

Finding living in Denmark is in general a huge headache especially with a tight budget in August/September because all new students will be looking for housing. It is a must to sign up to a student housing organisation early (in winter or spring) which is free, because most Danish housing systems have a waiting line, so the earlier you sign up the higher is the likelihood of getting housing in time. I have moved a lot in Aarhus but started in an apartment which was for 1 semester, then lived in two different dorms and now I am sharing an apartment with 3 friends.

Getting all the paperwork (living registration, id number/ health care card, working permit) done for living in Denmark can take a while, so patience is the key. For me it took about 1 month until I was able to open a bank account. The waiting times vary widely from city to city.

Having a job is a great way to finance studies in Denmark. Similarly, to paperwork finding a job will take time. It is important to ask friends you find in Denmark who have jobs about how they got their job, and do they know any free positions.  A bonus is that students from EU countries, who work approximately minimum 12 hours a week, can get a student grant which is approximately 800 euros a month.

Biking and transport

A really cool thing about Denmark is biking. Bikers are the kings of the streets in cities. Since I bike year around it is important to know a little bit about fixing a bike because I feel like I have had a million flat tires during a 1,5-year period. Also, in bigger cities stealing bikes is a thing so having a lock is a must.

Unusual weather conditions, which lasted for about half a week

My crew

I got lucky with my classmates, I have amazing international friends from school. They are from Denmark, Canada, Poland, Lithuania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Romania and form many more places. Together we go to different events, go out, but also do more unusual things like paint apartments and in general try to do different things together.

I have made friends by going to interesting events and trying new things. I go to an international salsa club and I have met many amazing people through salsa.

post-exam stress reliever – rooftop basketball with Robert and Petr from Czech, Hanna and Tyson form Poland
painting Shereen’s from Canada apartment with Petr from Czech and Melissa form Finland
Lunching in school, on the picture me, Melissa (Finland), Tim (Denmark), Andrea (Romania), Robert (Czech Republic), Shereen (Canada) and Petr(Czech Republic) taking the picture.

The end

Now I am starting my last semester by doing an internship as a user experience designer in a small start-up. Coming to Denmark has been definitely one of my best decisions. Besides getting knowledge in school I have also found new friends, learned how to live in a new environment and have had many amazing adventures.

If you feel like you need have more to ask about living in Denmark you can contact me or Dream Foundation to get more information.

Tyson and me (on the right) on top of a viewpoint in Aarhus centre, on the 2nd day of school and enjoying the sun(rarity)

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