One of the hardest decisions during the study abroad process (besides actually deciding to go abroad) is choosing a location. When picking a location there are a lot of factors to consider. For example, you may consider cost of living, study programs offered, culture, atmosphere of the city, student life, and opportunity to travel. UNM offers so many programs across the world that it is almost a guarantee that you will find a program that meets your criteria for a location. In this blog, I will talk about how Estonia could be a great option for you!
I’ve been in Tallinn, Estonia for over forty days now and truly believe this will be one of the best years of my life. If you have already decided to study abroad, I would definitely recommend you to consider coming to Estonia because of the following:
Money: The main reason I have heard people use to avoid studying abroad is because they say they don’t have the money to go. Well this may be true if you study abroad in countries like Sweden or New Zealand but Estonia is actually super affordable! Compared to Albuquerque, Tallinn is significantly cheaper. For example, rent in Albuquerque is 27% higher in Estonia, restaurant prices are 18% higher, and grocery prices are 60% higher in Albuquerque (www.numbeo.com). You may still be thinking what about the plane ticket? Well, students from UNM who study in Tallinn are fortunate enough to be eligible for scholarships offered from Tallinn University of Technology! Also, if you come to Estonia you pay UNM’s tuition since it is an exchange program.
Location: Even though Estonia itself is a small country it is in the perfect location for travel of Northern Europe being situated very close to Russia, Finland, Sweden and Norway. Its great to be able to visit these countries without having to pay the cost of actually living there. Also, there are very affordable prices and airfare to all parts of Europe from Estonia!
Student Life: No matter where you study abroad the best part is that it is fairly easy to make friends and meet people. This is because you and the other students all are in the exact same situation. However, meeting people in Estonia is super easy because it has an amazing ESN team! ESN stands for Erasmus Student Network and Erasmus is the program that sends exchange students to different countries within Europe. Erasmus Student network is entirely run by volunteers and organizes events for all exchange students including ones like me from countries outside of Europe. The ESN team here in Estonia is fantastic and organizes about four events every week. The events range from small events like board game nights to big events like trips to Russia! Regardless of the event you are bound to meet people and make connections!
Overall, Estonia can have some small downsides like harsh weather and no public restrooms but it is a wonderful, cheap location where it is easy to make friends!!
Below are some pictures of my adventures here: