In the US, the conventional wisdom tells us that the US academic experience is superior, but is that really the reality or is that the story we are told. In this episode, Jenn talks with Samantha Savage. Samantha received her undergraduate degree in International Studies from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She received her master’s degree from Malmo University in Global Political Studies. Samantha talks about her experience getting her master’s in Sweden compared to her undergraduate education at Carolina.
At some point in the conversation about college in Europe, the question of safety comes up. People usually ask whether it’s dangerous for students to live in Europe. In this episode, Jenn explores the ideas of fear and risk and whether the reward can outweigh the risk. She talks with Ansel Mullins, who has lived with his family in Europe for 14 years.
Ansel is a native Chicagoan and lived in Istanbul, Turkey from 2001 to 2016 and now lives in Lisbon, Portugal. He is a co-founder of Culinary Backstreets, a company devoted to telling the story of the food of urban environments. He also started the blog, Istanbul Eats. To support his writing habit, he has restored old homes, tended bar, sold mobile phones and taught physical education in a kindergarten. His writings have appeared in the New York Times, Saveur Magazine, Monocle, The Guardian and other publications.
Episode 5: College in Europe: What You Need to Know
In this podcast, Jenn covers the basic concepts about going to college in Europe. She explains the different types of higher education institutions in Europe, the types of degree programs, along with housing and student life.
How useful are college rankings actually? What do they measure? Do the factors that rankings measure map to the undergrad experience? Are there excellent schools that aren’t ranked? How can one determine whether a school would be a good fit if it is not ranked? Jenn talks with Miwa Kitmura, Head of External Relations from Vesalius College in Brussels to answer these questions and more in this episode of the Beyond the States podcast. They also talk about the areas students should investigate to determine school quality.
This episode of the Beyond the States podcast focuses on tuition cost. Jenn presents information on the astronomical tuition in the US and related problems. She then demonstrates how tuition for the English-taught bachelor’s and master’s degree options in Europe allow an international student to pay less for her entire degree program-including travel costs- than one year of tuition alone at many schools in the US. Peter Kumble, an American professor at Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague, Czech Republic joins the discussion. They explore how it is possible for international student tuition to be so reasonably priced and dig into information about the continued savings students have for other related costs like housing, fees, books, and health insurance.
Jenn begins by touching down on the problems with the US higher education admissions processes and the increase in the number of US schools with extremely low acceptance rates. Maarten Dikhoff, an administrator from Groningen University, explains how different the admissions process is when students apply to schools in the Netherlands and Europe. The transparent and objective admissions criteria present a refreshing change to those accustomed to the US systems. Spoiler alert-they don’t care about your SAT scores or extracurricular activities!
In the spring of 2015, Jenn Viemont happened on a Facebook post about a US student who was attending college for free in Germany. Little did she know that article would start her on a journey to build a database of the thousands of English-taught bachelors and masters programs in continental Europe. In this episode, Jenn Viemont talks about why her kids will opt out of US higher education and go to college in Europe instead. She provides an overview of the benefits around this which include affordable tuition, transparent admissions requirements, employability, and the life changing experiences offered by living abroad.