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  • Sara Maria @ssaraelf

Introducing: Sara Maria

In the next few articles we will be introducing some new students that are currently preparing for their adventures as international students at VU Amsterdam. Follow them througout this exciting period and share your experiences with them! Next up: Sara Maria from Finland! Follow Sara's journey on Instagram: @ssaraelf

Who am I?

My name is Sara Maria Elfvengren. I am 20 years old and from Finland. (Yes, the small country between Russia and Sweden. Yes, we are great at hockey. No, we don’t have any penguins or polar bears. And Angry Birds are Finnish, sauna is Finnish, skates are Finnish and Santa Claus is from Finland.).

I’m going to study BA Psychology at VU.

What is my background, and why am I coming to Amsterdam?

I grew up in a small town in the Savonia-Karelia area of Finland (in the middle). I’ve been a competitive dancer my whole youth. I graduated from lukio (Finnish equivalent of high school) spring 2017. So after that I had a gap year. For my gap year I worked and studied basic courses of psychology and statistics in the open University of Tampere. And danced.

I always dreamed about the idea of living abroad. Then I figured that now was the time I should go and live that dream. Being brought up in a small town in a small country the idea of something so vibrant and big and wonderful as Amsterdam just called out to me (also, I have a couple of relatives there). So that’s what I did, applied, got in and now I am a month away from picking up my whole life and moving it across Europe.

Where am I with my do-to-list?

I still have to pay my tuition fees, but that’s all technically taken care of. I do have a one-way plane ticket ready and for now three empty suitcases waiting for me to pack them. I have terminated my rental contract and job here. But I’m homeless starting 1st of August. I do have places to crash in Finland for the half month of August, but in Amsterdam I’m still looking. But I’m trying not to stress about it.

I think this is it for now, and I’m so excited about coming to VU and meeting tons of new wonderful people.

See you in Amsterdam!


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