Study Abroad in Copenhagen: A Day In The Life

While I was planning my study abroad experience, I thought about everything: what I was going to bring, who I was going to hang out with, what my travel plans were going to be, etc. I thought about everything...except the fact that I was there to study.

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of going abroad and forget that you’re going to be away for a really long time. One of the things they tell you when you arrive is that not every day is going to be an Instagram-worthy adventure. Some days are simply going to consist of the typical events that come with any college experience no matter where you are.

Here is a day in my life as a study abroad student in Copenhagen, Denmark:

It’s Monday, February 19. I have class at 8:30 a.m. so I wake up at 7 a.m. and get ready. I get dressed in warm clothes, eat breakfast and then I’m out the door. My 20-minute walk to class is pretty amazing so I don’t mind it. When I get to class it’s an hour and 20 minutes of discussions on readings and current events. It goes by pretty quickly and none of it is taken as seriously as it would have been at UMD.

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When class is over, I have a lot of time to kill so I go into a coffee shop with some friends. We order drinks, which they serve with little biscuits or cookies to try. At the coffee shop, I’ll alternate between doing homework and applying to internships for the summer. I’ve found that I’m more productive at cafés than I am at home.

As lunch time rolls around, I’ll go up to the counter at the café and order a small salad or a smørrebrød—an open-faced sandwich and common Danish lunch. I’ll then continue to work while eating my lunch until my next class.

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My next class is also an hour and 20 minutes. This class consists of discussion, small video clips and group work. When class is over I walk down Stroget, the longest pedestrian street in Denmark. This street has shopping and dining for anyone and everyone to enjoy.

When I get back to my building I check up on everyone else on my floor to see what they’re up to. Then I usually change and go to the gym. Most of the gyms give a student discount which is really nice and you can pay just for the time you’re in Copenhagen.

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After the gym, I go back to my room. I shower and then make dinner. My building usually eats together while we do homework and hang out. Since it’s a Monday, we don’t go out but we do stay up watching a movie or talking until about midnight, and then the day is over.

Your study abroad experience is what you make it. I decided I wanted to live for the next four months as if I was living in Copenhagen forever. For me, this means that some days are not too exciting, but some days are full of exploring Copenhagen and the nearby areas. When I leave, I really want to feel like I lived here.