On this wet & dull Sunday evening here in Dresden, I find myself watching the World Cup on monitor #2, while searching for compelling study abroad programs on monitor #1. How great is it to have two monitors? Go get yourself a second monitor and enjoy the greater multitasking abilities that come with it. Germany is playing tomorrow (Go Schland!). The mood here is elevated! I too find myself excited about soccer – unbelievable.
Back in 2010 I decided to leave my home country and move to Germany. For a citizen of the EU a decision like this is not a huge deal because it’s fairly easy to move within the Union. I knew that I wanted to live in Dresden – a town 2 hours south of Berlin & roughly 2 hours west from Prague. The town is most popular in connection to its WWII past – it was bombed and later Kurt Vonnegut wrote about his experience in the amazingly weird book Slaughterhouse Five. Apart from history, the town is well-known for its wonderful baroque architecture and distinguished art galleries. This is also the place where the expressionist art group Die Brücke had its start. Dresden is also a town of many colleges and universities: Dresden University of Technology, Dresden University of Applied Sciences, Academy of Fine Arts (located in the heart of Dresden), Dresden University of Music, Palucca University of Dance & several more you get the main idea, which is the focus on art&technology.
I am a student of Dresden’s University of Technology where you have a wide range of fields to choose from. My bachelor studies were dedicated to the study of Art History and English and American studies. I can, therefore, speak best for my institute and only for the TU Dresden. Prospective students need to have a circa B2/C1 level of German. If you do not have a certificate you could also first move to Germany and then take an exam – many universities also offer one semester of German language prior to beginning your actual studies. So, if you are considering studying in Germany but think your level is not high enough, say you have a B1 level, you could apply for the summer semester (usually semester begin is April 1). Master students may choose from English taught programs, at the TU Dresden you have – Computational Engineering, Distributed Systems Engineering, Computational Logic – 4 semester-long, English language Masters of Science.
With a few hours of research online you’ll be able to find the location, university & course you’re interested in. Campuses in Germany tend to have a very friendly and open-minded atmosphere. Students are diverse and clubs & societies – plentiful. Life, depending on the city, is affordable (Dresden is quite cheap, but Hamburg, for example, rather expensive). many German universities have no tuition fees and it is therefore fairly simple to change your major and try out something new.
To get back to the point – Study abroad. Why Germany – 5 reasons?
#1 To avoid going in debt (if you come from a country where tuition fees are sky high).
#2 To experience life in a new country & become a well-rounded, independent individual.
#3 To live in the heart of Europe – all European countries are easily accessible => travel through Europe: both cost and time-effective
#4 Great night life combined with great infrastructure => you can go out, get drunk and not worry about getting home safe because many buses and trams run at night too.
#5 German universities are internationally renowned. A degree from a German institution will look pretty good on your CV.
I’ll leave you with this wonderful website full of helpful information on everything students need to know if they want to study in Germany – DAAD. I am also here with info on how to get by in Deutschland.
In & around Dresden – architecture, chocolate & rocks!