Swedish student Saga Barnard came to Strathclyde to study in September 2011. She is in the final year of a Politics degree and has greatly enjoyed her time in Glasgow. Saga reserved special praise for the Strathclyde International Society and how it helped her settle in her new home city.
Why did you choose to study at Strathclyde?
I went on a tour of Scottish universities before making my decision; I really liked coming to Glasgow and Strathclyde was the friendliest place. I had an hour-long chat with different lecturers and I had a nice meeting with the International Office.
Was this visit part of the University open day programme or was it arranged yourself?
I couldn’t make the University open days but I managed to arrange a visit and came over with my dad and a friend of mine who was also looking to come here to study.
What do you enjoy about studying/living in Glasgow?
I am never bored! Glasgow is the kind of city where you can have privacy when you want it, but socialising and having fun is just around the corner whenever you’re looking for it, too. Compared to a lot of places in the UK, Glasgow is a very cheap place to live; it is 50% cheaper for me to live here than it is in Sweden.
In what ways has the Strathclyde International Society helped you?
I can’t begin to describe how incredible the society has been for me in terms of meeting people. This is mainly because I have been involved with the committee, rather than just the society itself.
What advice would you give to an international student thinking of coming to Strathclyde?
Join as many societies as you can, even if you can’t continue with them all long term. This the best place to meet friends, get social support and you learn so much from talking to other students. Also, try and be friendly and open during your lectures. Come to the University for Freshers’ Week, not just the week when your lectures begin. This way, you’ll meet lots of people.
What has been the best thing about coming to Strathclyde/Glasgow?
It has been very nice for me to leave Sweden and come to a new country, a country where nobody knew me, I knew nobody and I could just re-invent myself. Strathclyde is a very diverse university, there are so many people from so many different socio-economic backgrounds here.