Author: Guestblogger (Page 2 of 16)

Exploring the Thrifty Side of Uppsala – By: Andis Polaks

We all know that being a student in Uppsala is quite fantastic and exciting in all the ways possible. However, sometimes the student life does take up quite a big chunk of you budget, so we do need to look for a way to save some money. Fortunately, Uppsala offers a fantastic solution to this conundrum: a treasure trove of second-hand stores that cater to a variety of tastes and preferences.

Second hand shopping is very popular in Sweden, both in order to save some money and more importantly, to make your purchases more sustainable and environmentally friendly. There are many second hand stores around Uppsala and you can find incredible gems there. Going to a gasque but do not have proper clothing? The second hand market of Uppsala has got your back. So let me tell you a bit about the second hand stores in Uppsala.

In this blog post, I’ll take you on a comprehensive tour of some of the fantastic second-hand stores in Uppsala. Whether you’re on a tight budget, an eco-conscious shopper, or simply enjoy the thrill of finding unique and pre-loved treasures, these stores have got you covered.

Myrorna Uppsala

Location: Kungsängsgatan 20

Myrorna is a household name when it comes to second-hand shopping in Sweden. The Uppsala branch is no exception. This store is a real gem, offering a wide range of clothing, home decor, and even furniture. The best part? It’s not just a thrift store; it’s a social enterprise, with proceeds supporting various charitable causes. You can shop guilt-free, knowing your purchases are making a positive impact.

Kupan Red Cross

Location: Danmarksgatan 20 B

The Red Cross store in Uppsala is another wonderful place to shop with a purpose. Here, you’ll find a diverse selection of second-hand items, including clothing, accessories, and home goods. The proceeds from this store go toward various humanitarian projects and initiatives both locally and internationally, making your shopping experience even more meaningful.

Erikshjälpen Second Hand

Location: Bolandsgatan 8A

Another great second hand store. Here you can find pretty much everything you might need starting from fancy clothes for a gasque, to vintage kitchen utensils and even interior design stuff. A big second hand store with multiple sections, so you can find whatever you are looking for!

Uppsala Loppis & Second Hand

Location: Skolgatan 33

Uppsala Loppis & Second Hand is a true hidden gem. It’s not as large as some of the other stores, but it’s a fantastic place to hunt for unique items at bargain prices. From clothing to books, records, and bric-a-brac, you never know what you might discover here.

Helping Hand

Location: Bolandsgatan 17B

Helping Hand is a second-hand store with a mission to support Uppsala’s homeless population. Not only can you find affordable clothing and household items here, but you can also take pride in knowing that your purchases contribute directly to providing essential assistance to those in need. It’s a win-win!

Uppsala’s second-hand stores offer not only an opportunity to save money but also a chance to reduce your environmental footprint and support charitable causes. These stores reflect the city’s diversity and inclusivity, making it easy for students from all walks of life to find something that resonates with their style and values.

As a student at Uppsala University, I can confidently say that exploring these second-hand stores has not only enriched my wardrobe but also given me a deeper appreciation for sustainable shopping and the power of giving back to the community. So don’t forget to carve out some time for thrifting adventures – you never know what treasures you might unearth while making a positive impact on the world.

Uppsala Unplugged: A Student’s Guide to the Nearby Hiking Trails – By: Noah Godin

Hey there, my name is Noah and during my two years as a Master’s student in Uppsala I had plenty of opportunities to explore the nature around the city. If you’re a nature lover like me, I think you’ll enjoy this small compilation I’ve put together. Uppsala, with its breathtaking forests and lush greenery, offers an array of fantastic hiking trails to explore. Today I would like to share some of the trails that are worth checking out when you feel like you need to take a break from the computers, textbooks, and lectures. Lace up your hiking boots and let’s take a closer look at the wonders that await us in and around this beautiful city.

Light hiking in Gamla Uppsala

Let’s start with an easy hike close to the city: The Gamla Uppsala Mounds. This approximately 6 km hike is quite easy and even if you don’t have much experience you’ll be able to enjoy it. For a perfect introduction to hiking around Uppsala, the Gamla Uppsala Mounds trail is an excellent choice. This easy hike will take you back to Sweden’s ancient past. Along the route, you’ll encounter historical mounds and burial sites, which hold great significance in Swedish history. Take a moment to admire the view of Uppsala and its surroundings from the top of the mounds – it’s quite the sight! If the weather allows you can also jump into the Fyris river at the Storvadsbadet swimming spot; around 0.5 km from the mounds. More info here.

The challenging Sigtuna-Odensala trail

If you are looking for something a little more challenging, you can hike the Sigtuna-Odensala trail. Also known as the 5th stage of the Ingegerdsleden, it’s a stunning hiking trail. This mesmerizing trail begins right at the heart of Sigtuna, leading you on a pleasent loop along the scenic Garnsviken. Picture yourself strolling alongside the glistening waters and basking in all the beauty along the shores of the Mälaren lake. From there, the path takes you on a north-easterly course, guiding you past the captivating Rävsta nature reserve and eventually you’ll arrive at your destination, Odensala. The hike is approximately 14.6 km and I would say that the difficulty is moderate. Sigtuna is short train or bus ride away from Uppsala, this hike promises an unforgettable experience. More info here.

Accessible hiking outside Uppsala

If you are looking for a wheelchair-accessible or stroller-accessible trail, check out Fysingen! Lake Fysingen is a true gem for all fellow bird lovers out there and for those craving an escape from the city and a brief stroll in nature. This short 1 km trail kicks off at the parking lot near the reserve’s southern entrance, also known as Åholmen. From the get-go, it offers a wonderful mix of natural wonders, featuring scenic landscapes along the water’s edge and charming beach meadows. The trail itself is hard-surfaced, making it super easy to navigate. As it winds through the lively wetlands, a wide wooden walkway comes to the rescue, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable journey for all. More information here.

Experience Norrland by visiting Skuleskogen

For the seasoned hikers and those with a thirst for thrilling adventures, Skuleskogen National Park is a must-visit. Located a bit further from Uppsala but definitely worth the weekend trip, this park boasts a diverse range of trails catering to various experience levels. Several trails of different lengths are available. Prepare to be awestruck by the rugged beauty of towering cliffs, dense forests, and the mesmerizing view of the Baltic Sea from the Skuleberget mountain. Remember to pack enough water and snacks, as some trails can be quite demanding. I would not recommend this as your first hike ever, but if you have some experience, you should put Skuleskogen National Park on your list! More information here.

Stay close to the city in Fjällnora

If you prefer to stay closer to Uppsala, the Fjällnora-Länna trail is an ideal choice. Located just a short bus ride away, this nature reserve offers a peaceful and refreshing escape from the city bustle. The hike is approximately 6.5 km and could be described as easy to moderate. The serene lake, lush greenery, and charming picnic spots make it perfect for a day trip with friends. The well-marked trails cater to various fitness levels, making it suitable for both beginners and experienced hikers alike. During summers you can hop on the Lennakatten heritage railway from Uppsala Central Station to Selknä and catch the heritage bus to Fjällnora. Return by bus from Länna. If you’re feeling up to it, be sure to look at some of the rental options such as canoes or pedal-boats as well! More info here.

Hiking etiquette and recommendations

As you venture into the great outdoors and explore these hiking trails, remember to be a responsible hiker. Respect nature, leave no trace behind, and adhere to local guidelines to ensure the preservation of these natural treasures for generations to come. One last honorable mention to check out are the trails in Uppsala’s Stadsskogen! Lastly, always check the weather forecast and trail conditions before setting off, and make sure to inform someone of your hiking plans for safety purposes. Carry essential items like a map/phone, first aid kit, and enough food and water to keep you energized during your journey.

So, now I hope you’re a bit more prepared to immerse yourself in the stunning beauty that surrounds Uppsala. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just beginning to dip your toes into the world of trekking, these trails have something for everyone. Grab your backpack, put on your hiking boots, and get ready to experience the best of nature right here in Uppsala.

Happy hiking!

The Hidden World of Uppsala’s Smallest Residents – by Noah Godin

Walking through the main streets of downtown Uppsala you may encounter quite an unfamiliar scene. However, you’ll have to be attentive or you might just miss it. Nestled into the exterior walls of some of the city’s otherwise commonplace buildings, close to Güntherska, exists miniature worlds occupied by the most ordinary of rodents – mice.

These snapshot scenes depicting this dynamic mouse society captures its residents in moments eerily familiar to the residents here in Uppsala. If you look close enough, you may even be able to see a bit of yourself in the lives of these special Uppsalians. In one display there’s a polka dotted skirt wearing mouse haphazardly watering their plants on the balcony. In another, you can see groups of students enjoying our very own Fyris river. In the third there are mice kneading dough together; something that is sure to be reminiscent for some of those students occupying Uppsala during the pandemic’s wave of amateur bread makers.

Local Jekaterina Pertoft is the artist

Admittedly, it took me around three months of living in Uppsala before I first noticed the unsuspecting installations, but now that I’m familiar with their locations I’ll frequently adjust my walking route to take a quick peak and get a little hit of dopamine (especially in the winter months). These works are made by local artist Jekaterina (Katja) Pertoft whose been a resident in the city since 1999. While Katja typically is best known for her portraits, illustrations and landscapes, she established a puppet theatre in 2006 with her friend Svetlana Dmitieva  named Marielunds Dockteater.

Mousy Malmö and Amsterdam relatives

After having witnessed Pertoft’s work for the first time, I immediately felt that the work seemed comparable to something I had seen before. After a quick search online, it would appear that Pertoft’s mouse-based artworks are not alone in Sweden. In fact, I had the privilege of living in Malmö during my BA where the works of art collective Annonymouse MMX, had been on display in a number of locations. The two representations of these petite realms are distinct in that Pertoft’s works feature the daily lives of these mice in full swing, whereas Anonymouse’s work is empty of its residence and instead invite the viewer to fill the scenes with their own imagination. An additional variation between the artists is the spread of Anonymouse’s exhibits which range from Malmö and Lund to Quebec, Boston and the Isle of Man. Anonymouse’s prevalence across the globe has even picked up some pretty impressive media attention.

On my quest to determine whether this is a strictly Swedish phenomenon, I took to the internet searching for similar mouse-based art and while I came across some similar art pieces like ‘Fairy Doors’ in Australia, the only other mouse-specific endeavors I found was The Mouse Mansion. This miniature museum in Amsterdam is home to a huge collection of mice in a variety of scenes. While the Mouse Mansion is an impressive feat, I think I prefer the more scraggily looking mice here in Uppsala over their more manicured Mansion residents that appear to be either felted, sewn or a combination of the two.

What do you think? To read more about Uppsala’s Street Art you can look here.
(Non-Swedish speakers may need to use Google Translate)

The Who, What and Whys you should know as a Student at UU – By: Noah Godin

Whether you’re beginning your BA, MA or PhD, it’s never too late to ask the questions that directly affect you and your studies. At the start of a new cycle of education we are bombarded with information, webpages and contact information for the various people overseeing our area of research.

I’ve now been a student representative at Swedish Universities for 5 years and I actively participated in a number of student associations as well as within the Student Council during the final year of my BA. While these positions varied in intensity and commitment, I’ve come to understand a small handful of reoccurring obstacles students face and I’d like to take a moment to elaborate upon them here.

Who should you know?

I would argue that one of the most crucial things to understand as a student is the organizational structure of your department and of the organizations made to represent you as students. In practice, the benefit of familiarizing yourself with this information is to expedite your communication with the people who are meant to help you.

There are two places to look for this information.

  1. Department Organization and Staff
  • First, if you don’t already know, you should determine which department your programme falls under; this information should be on your programme’s webpage.
  • Next, you should navigate to the Organization and Staff webpage, from there you can search for your department in the provided search bar and open the corresponding link.
  • Once you’ve done this you will be able to see the various individuals responsible for your department, such as the Head of the Department and the Directors of Studies; there may also be contact information for other staff such as administrators and/or counsellors.

Saving or knowing the location of the contact information for those directly responsible for your studies is something I highly recommend. Your teachers will likely go over this information during your first classes along with the expectations they have for you and other important information like student health services. However, I know from experience that it can be quite difficult to retain this information on the first day within a new programme or university.

As an example, I will refer to one specific Union – Uppsala Studentkår (Uppsala Student Union), as they are the most prominent on campus for the widest variety of students but please open the hyper-link above to see which union(s) best fit you and your studies.

Uppsala has a rich history of student unions and they are some of the most important organizations to familiarize yourself with during your time at Uppsala University. Their staffs are committed to helping students optimize their education, facilitating engaging activities for students and ensuring that students are represented at as many places as possible within the university’s infrastructure.

What should you know?

Another thing to prioritize as a student at UU is finding out what type of services and benefits are available to you.

Student Nations

The center of social life for students at UU, student nations are more than just places to have drinks, parties, and dinners. Student nations also frequently offer lunches at affordable prices, hold activities such as choirs, and some even have special housing initiatives for its members. It can also be a place to work or volunteer at to meet students you might not have otherwise crossed paths with. Lastly, members of nations also have exclusive access to a number of discounts through To read more about what nations are up to on a day-to-day basis you can look here.

Health & Support Services –

Uppsala University has quite a bit of infrastructure in place to make sure your needs are met. If you’re into working out, sports, team sports, climbing or personal training the on-campus gym Campus1477 has you covered. UU also offers a Lightroom to help with fatigue that can come with the darker months here in Uppsala.

Most importantly is Uppsala University Student Health Services, they offer a number of lectures and seminars as well as advice on mental health. They can also point you in the right direction either through their own individual counselling or through external support.

Another critically useful service offered through UU are the services aimed at promoting accessibility. This support mainly comes in two forms, the first is Language and Reading Resources offering; language workshops for written and oral guidance; the reading studio at Campus Blåsenhus which has programs to support students with reading impairments; Audio books, braille books and e-books; text-to-speech tools; and spelling support. The second form is Long-term disability support, which is more customized to the individual needs of students with various other forms of long-term disabilities.

Other Services –

Housing and Finance Services is a webpage available on UU’s website which offers information on finding housing in both Uppsala and Visby as well as some basic finance information for students new to Sweden.

Study and Career Counselling is another resource offered by Uppsala University which aims to assist students regardless of which stage of their academic career they are at. You can book appointments through the hyperlink above.

Library and Library Services is one of the most valuable assets you can utilize at the university, they have a large, dedicated staff that can help you navigate a wide array of obstacles and challenges. One place you can keep an eye on is the Library Calendar; here you can find a number of events both in-person and online that aim to help students and researchers develop their research skills and a variety of other skills. Another great resource offered through the library is their ‘Suggest a Purchase’ webpage which puts the power in the hands of students to request the literature important to their field of study. Otherwise, the libraries and their staff can assist you with locating sources, citations, printing on campus and much more.

Student Rights

The Student Rights webpage on the UU website is the number one spot for information on the University’s different policies, protocols, and responsibilities in place to protect you as a student in a number of different circumstances such as discrimination, injuries & incidents, cheating & plagiarism, student working conditions and more. Additionally, there is some information at the lower half of the webpage on who to contact in the case of some of the listed situations.

Why should you know?

So, why know all this? What’s the point in the end? To put is concisely, over the past few years acting to represent my cohort(s) I’ve found that students frequently underestimate their power to positively affect their education and their quality of life as students.


It is relatively standard for courses in Sweden to send out an anonymous feed-back form at the end of each course, asking students to detail their likes, dislikes, desires, and other ways they would like to see the course improve. These surveys are often the only feedback educators receive on the quality of their courses and because they’re voluntary, they are often neglected by students. It is understandable for students to want to wipe their hands clean of a specific course after they’ve handed in a stressful exam – I’ve been there, but the idea is to refine the education to best prepare students in the years to come and we can only hope that our predecessors have done the same for us.

Going above and beyond these feedback surveys is also a great way to improve upon the existing education and can have surprisingly quick results. Even small acts such as suggesting an article or book to your teachers can go a long way and have lasting effects. There is also the ‘hands-off’ approaches you can enact such as requesting libraries to make specific purchases of books pertaining to your field of study.

Student Representation

Universities are huge and they involve a lot of moving parts, sometimes the operations don’t work the way they are supposed to. The benefit to ensuring student representation is to ensure students and staff are on the same page and that we, as students, can feel secure that someone is looking out for our best interests.

This can be small things like reminding our department staff to make our class schedules available to us within the set guidelines, sometimes things just fall through the cracks. However, it can also be bigger things like the victories across Sweden when student unions fought for our right to privacy during the pandemic when classes were online. It can also be about spreading awareness, there is a lot of information we are presented with as students, it’s imperative to have people responsible for ensuring students know about mental health support, their rights to make complaints when problems arise, as well as the fun things like student nations and associations!

Having a Fulfilling University Experience

Uppsala University is comprised of tens of thousands of individuals, each with their own interests, needs, capabilities and experiences. Knowing, early in your studies, who to contact and what infrastructure exists to optimize your time at UU is a huge advantage to your wellbeing. Perhaps you’re a student from a sunnier place; having the knowledge that the university has a light room specifically to help you out during the dark winters can result in a better mood. Students with dyslexia should know as early as possible of Uppsala University’s Text-to-Speech tools. International students may find the links for housing, bank accounts and insurance on UU’s website to be a great help when they are first settling in. Moreover, sometimes the best help we receive as students during our studies are from our fellow classmates, having this useful information in your back pocket will almost certainly help a friend during your stay here at UU.

Final Thoughts

All in all, most students appear to get quite excited about the prospects of clubs, associations, student nations or other social events and while these activities are quite attractive, knowing your rights, the university organizational structure and the services in place to serve you as students is invaluable during the moments you need them most. With that said, I encourage you to explore some of the things listed above and to contribute to spreading awareness within your own classes and social circles.

The Ramblings of a Carnivore in Transition – By: Earl Dube

Meat. Yes please. That’s it. The answer was always, “Yes, please”. I guess coming from an environment where meat was interwoven into almost every fibre of society it ceased being just about eating it at lunch and dinner time, and where fortunate, breakfast. Throughout the years, it became cultural. You’d never give it a second thought. It’s what we eat, it’s what we do, it’s who we are.

The consumption of meat back home in Zimbabwe, before economic hardships forced citizens to be more inventive and enterprising with their options, was a daily thing. You see, I come from an environment that enjoyed eating meat in its various forms. Beef and chicken being the primary sources of protein, with goat and mutton playing a more supporting role through the ages, it was always a given that when you sat down to dinner, there is a roast, a stew or some adventurous fry up that your mom or whomever was responsible for dinner that day at the table. Without it, questions would be raised.

I have lived in 4 different African countries and have travelled to many more, and the tune is the same, meat is an essential part of the diet. Nyamachoma (street grilled meat found in Kenya) stands adorn central Nairobi, Kapana (traditional grilled meat strips from Namibia) trolleys are a common site in the industrial areas of Windhoek, and the Western suburbs of Harare are home to grill establishments as far as the eye could see offering goch-goch, gango and many other meat based dishes that help lay a foundation before a night of “socializing.”

But this is not a story of meat, meat consumption and how wonderful eating meat is, neither is it a sad tale of me reflecting on how I miss digging into the perfectly grilled steak. This mini ramble is a reflection, nay a moment of realization on how meat and meat consumption is a totally different concept when you remove yourself from the situation. Since beginning my sojourn to Europe, Sweden specifically, I realised that the meat story, although prominent in the history of the land, is totally different. Apart from having to pay an arm and a leg and sometimes a kidney for the premium stuff, which, in itself, could be a deterrent to over-consumption, people watch what they eat here. What you eat becomes an almost active act of consciously thinking of what you are putting in your mouth and the journey it has taken to get in front of you.

Sustainability in the beginning was a buzz word for me, an unnecessary addition to every conversation anyone was having. I thought people had run out of ideas of what to talk about with regards to how to deal with the climate crisis and environmental challenges we are facing as a planet. I thought Europe had no options and was coming for everyone’s fillet of beef with mushroom and pepper sauce or peri -peri chicken, because the global north had decided to ignore its reliance on other ‘globe-killing’ practices. I quickly realised that for us to realise our joint mandate to “heal the world” as Michael put it, one must play their part, and that begins by making sustainable choices.

So does this mean abandoning meat consumption entirely and turning you back away from eating it. No. It means focusing your attention on not only sourcing sustainably produced meat products, but also looking at alternative ways of getting the protein into the body. I decided, out of my own convictions to walk a journey that would help me pay more attention to the food I eat. I’ll never forget when I went and told Patricia, a friend of mine studying sustainable tourism, I had decided to take on Meatless Mondays. Her face lit up and expressed boisterously (something Swedes are known not to do easily) how she was excited and proud of me. She then went on to offload a barrage of meat-free recipes for me to try, as well as offer recommendations of meat-substitutes. For the latter, I’d rather just not eat the meat than consume meat substitutes. There are very very few that are worth their weight in taste. I do thank her for the cauliflower steak and mushroom risotto one though. Epic dish.

Meatless Mondays was then joined by Planted Thursdays and before you know it, I jumped from someone who eats meat every day to meat at most during 5 meals a week out of a possible 21. Have these actions lowered global temperatures? Nope. Has this addressed the way the meat industry handles beef and beef production? Not even. Has this started a conversation on how small actions can lead to big changes if everyone gets on board and does their part? Most definitely. Have I Changed the world? I’m well on my way!

So, allow me then to re-introduce myself. Hi, my name is Earl, and I identify as a transformed carnivore in transition. I am now fully conscious and aware of my consumption habits and look to always eat in a sustainable manner. Though I still love a good steak and enjoy the pleasure a hamburger brings, I know toning it down does the planet more good than it does me, and I am going to continue to be an ambassador, especially to those who cannot be separated from their prime ribs and chicken wings. It’s all about making small changes and being consistent.

If you begin this journey, I wish you luck.

Internship: What do I do? – By: Sam

So, you want to do an internship, but don’t know where to start? Well, hey, hola, hello, it is I, Sam, ready to bless you with another blog. This time it’s about internships! Internships are awesome and can be done in two different ways, the first is your programme offers you internships you can follow through them or, the second way, is finding your own internship, be it in Sweden or another country. To provide you with the best information possible, I’ve done both! Let’s start with internships through your programme.

Programme Internships

At the start of my academic year at UU, I got an entire week filled with information. The first day, especially, I got to learn about the different learning platforms, how to apply for courses, and how my programme schedule could look like. On this very first day, they told us that we could do an internship for credits if we wished to. So, from the very first day the university was great in giving me an overview of when I could do an internship within my 2-year schedule. But what do I do? Where do I apply? Well, the very first chance my programme coordinator hears about internship options for us, she would send us an email with the differing internships offered by the programme. I study Sociology of Education, so all my internships were related to education in some type of way. She would send us the internship descriptions and how to apply as well as the deadline to apply. For my programme, I had to write a motivation letter as to why I believe the internship fits with my background but also what I could learn from it. In my year, I applied for two internships. One about student mobility and the other, I honestly don’t remember… oops. BUT, I sent a motivation letter for both, it didn’t need to be long (half a page max), and also told my programme coordinator which I would prefer of the two. After some time, the internship supervisor contacted me to let me know I got accepted for my first choice, hooray! Most internships in my department look for a group of students, so I got accepted with a group of other students and we got to work on a project together.

But what can a university offer you? Well for me, it was mostly research. Professors, PhD students or companies would like to research a specific topic and students could apply to help with their research and choose one that interested them. I could also choose how long I wanted to do the internship for and for how many credits. I could choose to do it for 7,5EC or 15EC, for a few weeks or stretch it out for an entire semester. It was up to me how I wanted to use my time and credits. This is communicated with my internship supervisor and my programme coordinator.

For my internship, my group worked on finding previous research in Sweden about international student mobility We located trends and presented our results to a group of PhD students and professors. It was very valuable research experience, and our work felt appreciated by the researchers. At the end, we had a nice dinner with the professors provided by the university. But after this, I also wanted some experience in the work field. So, I went to look for another internship, this time without the universities’ help.

Finding your own internship

So, you want to do an internship but your programme coordinator sent you a list of internships and you don’t like them. What do you do? Give up? NO, you look for your own internship! Finding an internship on your own can be difficult. What are you looking for? Where do you go? Who do you contact? How do you contact them? All very valid and scary questions.

Now, to start with. You need to kind of know what you’re looking for, so you know where to look. I knew I had to find something related to education, so I went to the most obvious place: a university. I contacted them through their main contact information on the website and asked to arrange a meeting with whoever is in charge with interns at the university. In this case, it was the dean. I got a meeting, spoke to her and explained everything I had to offer in terms of my educational knowledge and background. She then told me they’re looking for an educational researcher assistant and voila, I have an internship.

It sounds very easy, but honestly it took a lot of emails and lots of asking who to talk to, where to go and especially, what can, and will I do? But after lots of emails I finally got in touch with my internship supervisor. He sent me an overview of what I can do for the University and a schedule of how many hours this would take in total. This was VERY important because I had to send the University of Uppsala an overview and description of everything I’d be doing at the other University and this had to align with the amount of EC’s. After sending it, I had to wait for it to be approved by the university. Once it was approved, I could plan when to go back home for my internship. But if it was not approved, this doesn’t mean I can’t do it, but it would mean that the internship would not count for my degree and would be a separate project. So, getting the university’s approval is important to get credits and to pair it with your degree.

Now, it’s important to know I did not look for an internship in Sweden. I found one back in my own country because I am finishing my Master and was going to go home anyway, so I might as well go back home, finish my thesis and internship, and then hopefully find a job here at the university. But know that many Swedish companies prefer Swedish speaking students, so finding an internship or even a job can be very difficult. BUT I also know that in Stockholm, there are many English-speaking organizations and that finding an internship there might be easier. So, if you’re limited in traveling because of your visa or residence permit, and you would like to do an internship outside of Uppsala, you can look in Stockholm or even other parts of Sweden.

ALSO, very very important: most internships are unpaid. Especially, all internships through the university are also unpaid. So, I would suggest not to expect money when applying for an internship. It is a time to build experience in your field which can be very helpful in the future.

That was it folks! I hope you enjoyed my internship experiences, and it helps you a bit in how internships can work at Uppsala University. Thanks for reading and goodbye!!

Saving money and working opportunities during your studies – By: Sam

You arrive in Uppsala, you’re enjoying the weather, you’re enjoying your program and making new friends. You join a nation, start going out and start living your life but then you realise Sweden is a bit more expensive than you anticipated. What do you do? Do you save money? That’s probably a good idea, but maybe you want to gain some extra money too! Well, you’re just in luck because in this blog post I am going to give you all the tips and tricks to gain some extra cash and teach you some tricks to save you some money too!

Saving Money

So, let’s start by saving some money. Sweden might be very expensive, but they also have lots of different shops and ways to save some money. Let’s start with the cheapest supermarkets in Uppsala.

Uppsala has a wide range of different supermarkets, with ICA being almost everywhere you go. While ICA has lots of different options, they are nowhere near the cheapest supermarket. If you’re looking for cheap supermarket options, I would suggest Lidl and Willy’s. They also have a wide variety of items but at a cheaper price than ICA. I would also suggest checking all the discounts offered at different supermarkets. You can find discounts on their app or online, or just by walking through the supermarket. Any discount can help save you money! Another tip to avoid spending too much in a supermarket, do not shop while hungry. I can assure you you’ll get home with lots of snacks you didn’t need but at least we have some ice cream now, right?  I know I’ve been guilty of this, woops…

Next, let’s talk buying clothes and shoes in Sweden. You might come from a warmer climate or didn’t move with all your clothes to Sweden and you are looking for good winter coats, or just some more clothes to wear. Well,’ you’re in luck because Uppsala has LOTS of second-hand shops you can buy clothing, shoes, books, kitchen items, you name it! The second-hand shops often have really good clothes and its really cheap! Here is a list of my favourite second-hand shops in Uppsala you can check out:

  • Loppis Poppis
  • Myrorna
  • Stil Uppsala

Aside from these second-hand shops, you can also find cheap clothing at outlet stores. These stores are usually near Ikea and have lots of clothes on sale or at a cheaper price than regular clothing stores. My favourite outlet store is Stadium Outlet.

Some extra tips to save money is to catch any student discount you can! Once you are a member of a nation you can get an app called: STUK and they show you ALL the discounts you can get in Uppsala but also in Sweden in general. This can be coffee, food, clothes, and even train tickets in Stockholm. It’s a great way to save money and know where you can go for a cheaper price!

Another great thing about Sweden is their sustainability. When you buy plastic bottles, these bottles have something called Pant. This means that when you return your plastic bottles to a supermarket, you can get money back that you can use to get a discount on your groceries. So, next time you buy a plastic bottle, don’t throw it away! Keep it and bring it back to your nearest supermarket for a nice discount on your groceries. Just look for one of these machines:

Working in Uppsala

Now, let’s talk working and earning some extra money. Before I go into working in Sweden, it’s very important to tell you that there is no way that working part time can cover all your living costs and that working aside your studies can be VERY difficult timewise. Especially, since some programs have a lot more hours on campus or higher workloads than others. So, I would focus on your studies and see whether you have time and energy to work aside your studies at all. If you think you do, great! Let’s talk about the opportunities to make some extra money in Uppsala.

First up, nations always have job offers for students. You can work at a nation at the bar, in the kitchen, waiting tables, at formal dinners, etc. These jobs are always open, and nations are always looking for students to help. You can get paid at nations in money, but this is only if you have a personal number and Swedish bank account. If you do not have this, you get paid in free food and drinks or free tickets to different events, such as Valborg! Working at a nation is a great way to earn some extra income, get some free food and, especially, make new friends.  Nations are run by students, so you can easily meet other students there and have such a fun time while working at a nation!

Secondly, getting a regular part time job. Now, I am not going to sugar coat it, it is VERY difficult to find any part time jobs in Sweden that do not require you to speak Swedish. Aside from this, most jobs require you to have a Swedish bank account as well which means you need to have a Swedish personal number. It is also important to note, most jobs that don’t require Swedish are hard labour jobs, like working in a warehouse, or delivery jobs which usually requires you to have a car or driver’s license. Most jobs that do not require Swedish are also in Stockholm, not Uppsala. This means you should be willing to commute to Stockholm for your job if you find one.

Let’s talk finding a job. Looking for a job is going to be a very long process and is going to be very difficult. You will most likely not find a job in your field. You can look for jobs on Indeed, LinkedIn or contacting a Swedish company you think might be interested in hiring you or accept an open application. After a month or two of job hunting, I found a part time job on LinkedIn. I looked for jobs in Sweden but also for remote jobs. I would suggest looking for remote jobs aside from jobs only in Sweden. This way you don’t need to commute, and you can work from home! I was lucky to find a semi remote job in Stockholm. I could go to the office when I wanted to, but also work from home if that worked out better. But it did take me at least a month to find, and I had to go through an interview process that also took some time.

I won’t say getting a part time job is impossible, but it can take a lot of time to find something. And I can say it is also very tiring since you will not have much free time aside from your studies and work. So, think hard about whether you can work and study without your job hurting your studies in any way, because this can be very difficult for many. I know it was difficult for myself too, because a program is full time and requires a lot of attention.

A Solo Adventure – By: Earl

The time came for me to celebrate yet another turn around the sun. This was not my first birthday in Sweden, well in a way it was. See, I left home in August, and my birthday is in January but during my first year in Sweden, I thought, why not go somewhere and celebrate my birthday there. So I packed up my bags and grabbed my partner and we headed to the airport. Merely two hours later, we were in beautiful Vienna, Austria. So in essence, this year was the first time I celebrated my birthday on Swedish soil. But enough of trying to figure out the meaning of it all, let me get right to what I want to talk about.

This year I decided to celebrate my birthday alone. I love people, love being around people, interacting and finding out about them, who they are and what makes them vibe and all. I thrive in people settings where you meet new people, converse etc. I guess that’s why making friends in Sweden has not been too taxing for me. I’ll call it a gift. Without being a pest, I just hang around until you decide I am super awesome and you just have to be my friend. Nothing awkward though, so don’t stress.

So, back to the story (I don’t know why I keep getting sidetracked). I decided to have some “alone time” this year for my birthday and got on a bus and headed to a nature reserve I have always wanted to go to. Hjälstaviken Nature Reserve, located only an hour away by bus from Uppsala, is a dream. It has a large marsh with reeds, a lake great for bird watching in the warmer months and hiking trails that are both challenging and rewarding. The forest areas provide a nice serene escape from the rush of the wind in the reeds or from the busy road. It is like stepping into a different world, but so is almost every nature park in Sweden. I have a monthly bus card, so I used that as my ticket. Going during the week was a bonus, there was almost nobody there, and I made sure I enjoyed my alone time. I didn’t walk the whole route, I wasn’t about that life! I chose 2 tracks, one led to an observation deck the other led to an open area where I sat for a quiet picnic. I had bought my food before I got on the bus to leave of course, but I have been made aware that during the summer months, when the place is always packed, there is an area with a kiosk and all.

Here’s a few takeaways from my time in the wilderness alone

  1. Time in nature is always rewarding. There has never been a time when I’ve taken time off from a rather hectic Masters schedule and regretted it. I am always glad I went out and just breathed.
  2. Being alone is not and should not be scary for more extroverted people. I tend to shy away from areas where I find myself without people around me because I am an overthinker and tend to go off on a tangent, so I am happiest when I am distracted by other people or doing something. The heavy breathing from the hike made sure my focus was on the present and cleared my head of any worry or stress
  3. Most areas and parks are easily accessible by public transport. After I got off the bus I walked a little bit to get to the nature reserve (about 20 minutes). Other parks have stops closer, whilst others are quite further away. Don’t forget to include that.
  4. Some areas are very isolated so you need to always be careful in case of an emergency. Keep a fully charged working mobile, a bottle of water and a snack. Swedish Nature reserves are popular and Swedes love the outdoors so most of the time you are guaranteed to see someone.

So remember that being alone is not always a bad thing. Sometimes it is a perfect time to rediscover who you are, your purpose and where you are heading.

My journey to find home… – By: Sam

As a second-year student and student ambassador, often times I have been
asked the question: why Uppsala University? The world is filled with various other
prestigious universities and gorgeous countries rich with opportunities. But I
have chosen to study in Sweden. A Northern country known for the cold and hard
winters, gorgeous nature, and, of course, the famous Ikea. But I come from a
country where the sun kisses my cheeks everyday and where the beach is
always 5 minutes away. I lived in the Netherlands, where the tulips bloom and
where boats sail through the canals. So, why did I choose to come Sweden of all

I wanted to start a new adventure. I’ve lived in Aruba for 18 years and after high
school I decided to move to the Netherlands. I love Aruba and it will always be
my home, but I longed for the cold and seasons I didn’t have. I wanted to see the
leaves fall of the trees, feel the cold air on my skin and experience the flowers
blooming in the spring. I yearned for a new beginning and a new experience. I
lived in the Netherlands for 5 years. Started my Bachelor and finished it.
Experienced the sorority life and Dutch culture of riding my bike to every corner
of the city I lived in. I enjoyed meeting new people, having cool roommates and
experiencing the beautiful countryside of the Netherlands. A place I could call
home again. But then corona hit…

It was an isolating life. I finished my Bachelor thesis and was looking at a
master’s degree, but I felt trapped in my home. I love the place and it is very
close to my heart, but I wanted a new beginning again. Somewhere new to
explore. So, I looked for places abroad to continue my journey and happen to
stumble upon Sweden. A country up North I have never been to nor ever thought
to explore. In one google search I saw nature I have never explored, a cold I have
never experienced, a country I’ve never even thought about. An interesting and
new place. An unexplored area, a place for me to discover. My new home

I found various programmes that caught my eye, but which city will I pick? The
country is so big. I am from a small country, an island even. In the Netherlands, I
lived in a small city. I can’t move to a big city, that’s a big step. A step I am not
ready to take. So, why not a smaller city, a less dense city? But I want to
experience the capital, so perhaps a city close to the capital? How about
Uppsala? I quickly type Uppsala into my search bar and stumble upon a quaint
city surrounded by nature, rich in history and buzzing with student life. I find a
city that excites me and makes me want to call it home. I immediately apply for
my programme and await the day I get accepted.

It’s the day of the results. I am nervous. I am scared, but I am most of all excited.
As if my body knew I would get accepted. As if my heart new it could find a new
place to explore and love again. I open the website, and I read my result. I am
accepted! I jump in glee; I run around the house and cry of happiness. I did it!
Flash forward to the day before moving to Sweden. I am leaving behind close
friends, leaving behind family once again and leaving behind a country I once
called home to pursue a new adventure. It’s a bittersweet ending to such an
exciting start of an adventure I had in the Netherlands. It’s reliving the sad
feeling I had when I left my island of Aruba to pursue my future in the

Netherlands, but also the excitement of a new start in a new and unexplored
country. I wake up the next day, grab my luggage, leave my apartment and go
to the airport. I am ready to leave my home away from home.
I arrive in Sweden. I am welcomed by an excited team of students and all the
information I would need to start my journey. I reach my apartment and settle
my things. I start my programme, meet new people, make new friends, explore
new areas, find comfort in new things I never could have imagined. A year has
passed, I walk through the city with a smile on my face remembering where I
was a year ago. A scared but excited girl with so much awaiting her. A girl ready
to face anything coming her way. A girl that has yet again, found her home.

Amazing Study Spots that stop your procrastination (For Campus Gotland students) – By: Patricia

If you’re anything like me and find that you’re mostly unproductive at home due to the many distracting things on your study desk, or your gaming console and (non-academic) book always in reach to pull you away from actually getting work done, this is a blog post for you. I’m always in search for new study spots around Visby to get my work done, both by myself or together with my friends or group members. Changing up my study scenery easily boosts my productivity levels and helps me mentally separate “home time” and “study time”. Without further ado, here’s my list of favourite study spots around Visby!

Almedalsbiblioteket – The Library

The library is right next to Campus Gotland, so you can enter both from the street or through Campus. There are individual desks, shared tables, soft couches, and separate study rooms alike, where you can sit with your laptop and work with other students or focus by yourself. Café Foaje is also connected to the library, which means you can easily take a fika break or grab a sandwich if you feel the need to refuel.

Wifi: Yes – eduroam

Pros: The variability of study spots means there’s bound to be something that fits my mood, whether I’m studying alone or need to get group work done.

Cons: It’s a public library, so it can get noisy when there are groups of friends or children around. Luckily, the separate study rooms are always silent!

Productivity rating: 4/5

Study rooms on Campus

When I’m looking for a spot to work silently, or a place to gather with my group members and doodle ideas on a white board, I book a study room in the E Building. These rooms are all different in regards to size and furnishing, which either means I can change up my scenery with ease, or I get very disappointed if my favourite one is booked up. What they all have in common though, is a lovely view over Visby! There are microwaves too, so you can take some food with you if you’re planning to work longer. Bring your campus card to enter during weekends!

Wifi: Yes – eduroam

Pros: You can stay for as long as you need to. Even past 10PM on a weekend. I promise it doesn’t feel spooky, only your procrastination would haunt you.

Cons: The study rooms are often fully booked, so you’ll need to plan ahead from time to time. You can try to walk into an empty study room and stay until the person who booked it kindly asks you to leave, but you didn’t hear that tip from me.

Productivity rating: 5/5

Gather with Gamers in G Building

If you study Game Design, you can access the G Building with your Campus card. Alternatively, if you befriend a Game Design student, you can ask them nicely to let them into this secret lair of theirs. Here, you can almost always find Game Design students working on their projects or playing videogames together to escape from work. There’s even a kitchen, so you can warm up your food.

Wifi: Yes – eduroam

Pros: You can make new Game Design friends and play with board games you can find in this building, or sit together with your laptops to play something together. Wait, am I still writing a post about study spots?

Cons: There aren’t that many places to sit for silent individual work. On an even more tragic note, I can’t enter with my general Campus card, so visiting the building makes me “kinda sus”.

Productivity rating: 3/5

Espresso House

If you promise not to buy the last caramel cheesecake before I arrive, I can recommend studying in Espresso House by Östercentrum. It’s a cozy café where you can always expect to find a free table. You might get jealous of those who only come here to drink coffee, but you can find comfort in the fact that you deserve a cup as well for your hard work. It’s a public space, so the public will be here to chat and be noisy, but I’m usually not distracted by it.

Wifi: Yes – you can connect without a password

Pros: There are many plugs for your laptop. Also the caramel cheesecake is amazing.

Cons: Unfortunately, there is no natural sunlight here, except for that one table by the window. The lamps are great though.

Productivity rating: 4/5

H10 Café

If you wish for lots of sunlight in the early afternoon, bring your studies to H10. In this café, you can sit by the window and occasionally glance out to people coming and going along Hästgatan while you ponder over some new theoretical concepts or try to come up with a fun title for you essay. They even serve lunch here, if you’re in the mood.

Wifi: Yes – ask for password

Pros: Sitting by the window is lovely.

Cons: There’s not a lot of space on the tables, so I’d honestly just bring one book, or my laptop.

Productivity rating: 3/5

S:t Hans

This is a popular café because it has a back garden that’s situated amongst old church ruins. If you’d like to work with your study group, this is the best café to meet up in, because it has big tables that will fit all of you comfortably. When it’s warm out, you can even choose between studying indoors or outdoors. If you’re looking for a snack, the carrot cake is really tasty!

Wifi: Yes indoors – ask for password

Pros: Perfect for group work, and the candle-lit tables are extremely cozy!

Cons: It’s hard to predict how full the café is, sometimes it’s relatively empty and quiet, other times there’s a lot of people and it can get noisy.

Productivity rating: 3/5

Almedalen – The Park

There’s no better way to channel your inner main character energy than to take your book or laptop to the park. This one time on a sunny and warm day, I settled down on a picnic table in hopes of getting work done, and it was equally relaxing and distracting to study at Visby’s most famous pretty park.

Wifi: No

Pros: Ducks. You can’t possibly stress about studies when you’re surrounded by ducks!

Cons: Ducks. You can’t possibly focus fully on studying when you’re surrounded by ducks!

Productivity rating: 2/5

That wraps up the study spots I can recommend! Of course, as you settle into Visby and discover more places, you will soon have a mental note of your very own favourite spots where you can be productive both on your own and with a study group. There’s so many cozy cafés within Visby’s walls, and numerous comfortable tables along the halls of Campus. Good luck with your studies!

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