Should I stay or should I go? Challenges of thinking about exchange


New semester, new exchange dilemmas! Every autumn and every spring many students from XAMK start their exchange studies abroad while other students are applying for this program in the future.

For many international students being in Finland already means ‘being abroad’. However, almost all of them don’t want to stop on the beautiful northern country and want to keep conquering Europe (and not only Europe, actually!). What for, you may ask? Well, being at home is always an option for those who don’t really like changes and travelling or simply don’t want to leave Finnish friends or studies. Anyway, what about the most incredible international experiences you can get during your exchange? What about all the beautiful places you may see? All the opportunities that are waiting for you somewhere outside of Finland? ‘The world is a book and those who don’t travel read only one page’.

What questions can appear when thinking about it? What challenges can be faced? Does the exchange process have more cons or pros? Analysis time!


Pluses of the exchange program:

+ Previous positive experiences. Whoever you ask (out of people who went for the exchange), I’m pretty sure 98% will tell you they are happy they decided to go.

+ A chance to live in another country. To be local in the different country with different language and culture. Isn’t it great?

+ Another educational system. You will have a unique opportunity to be a student in the countries with the highest education level, such as Switzerland, Korea, Germany, etc.

+ New friends. Imagine how many people from different countries from all over the world you can met! You never know where you will end up. What if in some years you’re going to live and work together with the person you’ve met during your exchange? Who know!

+ Change. Finland is a great country but sometimes you just need to move somewhere in order to develop yourself more.


Minuses of the exchange program:

– Fear of change. Not everybody is ready to move and change so many things. Leaving stuff you love and getting used to new lifestyle is a challenge.

– Material issues. Some exchanges may take more money than your living in Finland. However, there are only few of these and you get the grant anyway.

– Education is different, that’s why it is really difficult to study. Just consider it as a new challenge for yourself!


Obviously, there are more pluses than minuses. Therefore, the best option for you is to try it. Give it a chance! It’s not going to be that bad anyway. It’s better to regret something you’ve don than something you haven’t (even though you definitely won’t regret doing your exchange). So, open the list of your partner universities and choose the place of your dream! The world is waiting for you.