University: Riga Stradins University
Field of study: medicine
Study type: Other courses
Study in Riga? A good idea!
As with everyone before me and also with you, I lacked the necessary credits to study in Germany. So what to do? Either start an apprenticeship and hope that you will meet the criteria of individual universities or go abroad. There are many options, but they are naturally reduced because you don’t have the desired combination of subjects. Check liuxers.com to see vocational training in Romania.
Thus, often only the universities of the Eastern European countries remain. Some have well-known names, but one that I initially discovered by accident spoke to me the most.
Riga Stradins University initially stood out with a good website and the positive reviews here on MicroEdu tempted me to come to the open house and see the university and the city itself.
In a small group of about 10 interested people, some of whom are even now in my semester, we were shown around the university campus. At first, like pretty much everywhere else, you are set back by the old eastern buildings and you wonder whether this is really the right thing, but just like with the apartments, it says: outside fie and inside hui. The university is constantly being modernized and expanded, so we saw modern classrooms, laboratories and an inviting cafeteria. The dental clinic, which has the most modern treatment rooms and practice materials, stands out in particular.
In short, I applied and soon got a positive response, because those who apply early seem to have a better chance of getting a place.
I came to the orientation week with my one-way ticket and stayed at the NH hotel until I found an apartment. The hotel is very good for the price (RSU students discount) and the location (5 minutes from the university). Another good hotel is the OK Hotel, which is ideally located between the university and the anatomical center. Both are very cheap, often even cheaper than hostels and even some apartments. That’s why some students like to live there for longer periods of time.
I took part in pretty much all the offers of the orientation week (cinema, excursion, paintball, etc.), because these bring a relaxed time and are a great opportunity to get to know people. However, this also has a downside, because good apartments are being sold at this time. So you have to weigh up whether the apartment or the roommates are more important to you.
Just one more thing: It is particularly important for dentists to settle down quickly, because then their studies quickly become serious and there is not so much time left to look for apartments.
The course itself has been well described by others, so I can only add my own opinion here and there. For example, you not only have lectures, but also classes that take place either with the study group or with another one. So there are often only 10 or even 20 students. I think the small class sizes are very good because they give you the chance to ask questions, because even if studying medicine involves memorizing a lot, it helps a lot to understand the subject. Most of the teachers and professors are easy to understand as they are very young themselves and speak clear English. Only the older teachers can be difficult to understand, but these can often also speak German and Russian. As already described by others, it helps to overcome one’s weaker self and to prepare in good time.
But that’s all doable, even if you get stuck, because you have three attempts to pass the colloquia. It is only important to make up for the failed colloquium soon, otherwise you may fall behind.
Riga itself is a beautiful city in the Old Town and a diverse one in other districts as well. I think it’s the right size, not too big and not too small. Every now and then you run into other students and you can be there by bike or tram within 15 minutes. everywhere you need to be. It has most of the shops that you can find in Germany and many restaurants. Most bars and clubs are free (yay) but the music is, well see for yourself but you’re going to spend more time at housewarming parties in the first semester anyway.
The supermarkets are ok, maybe a bit more expensive than in Germany, but there is everything you need, you just have to be careful that the fruit and dairy products are not expired. But it’s best if you go to the market, because it’s cheaper and fresher there.
In summary, I can say that Riga is a great city that has a lot to offer, the university is good and you feel comfortable here. Of course there are small problems here and there, but I think that every foreign city in a foreign country with its own culture brings something like that with it. But those who have the courage to go abroad to study medicine/dentistry will definitely be rewarded here.