Vibrant Swedish architecture with the Mariahissen building in central Stockholm.

From Ethiopia to Sweden: My First Month at Karolinska Institutet

Hey there, fellow adventurers! I am Yohannes, and I couldn’t be more excited to share my journey and my first month at Karolinska Institutet with you.

Imagine fulfilling a lifelong dream of studying at one of the world’s top medical universities – that’s what my journey to Karolinska Institutet (KI) has been all about.

In this blog post, I will recount my journey from Ethiopia to Sweden and share my experiences – the challenges I faced and connections made during my first month at KI.

1. A Dream come true

From the very start, it was not just a goal for me but a dream to be part of KI, renowned for its excellence in medical education and research. This reputation motivated me to work hard and pursue this opportunity, fueling my determination.

After a lot of research and effort put into the application process, I finally landed at the best university in the world.

Yohannes in front of Campus Biomedicum with iconic Aula Medica building in the background.
Embracing the journey at Karolinska Institutet with the iconic Aula Medica in sight. 🎓🏛️ #KIStudentLife 📸 Photo by: Yohannes

2. Overcoming challenges

My journey to Karolinska Institutet was not an easy one, dreams sometimes come with challenges. One of the challenges I faced was the uphill task of securing funds for my studies.

Therefore, to make my dream a reality, I had to apply for scholarships including the Swedish Institutet Scholarship for Global Professionals, which is highly competitive.

It was a tough battle, but I didn’t back down.

And guess what? After putting my best efforts, I emerged victorious! I was fortunate!

Winning the scholarship of course opened doors I couldn’t have imagined. It is amazing how a simple ‘yes’ can change the course of your life.

3. Opening doors – networking

Winning the Swedish Institutet Scholarship opened numerous doors for me. Within my first month as a Karolinska Institutet student, I had the opportunity to meet influential people and expand my network.

One of the highlights of my journey was the send-off dinner organized by the Swedish ambassador to Ethiopia. Meeting His Excellency and the embassy team was an unforgettable experience, and it was just the beginning.

Yohannes, the Swedish Ambassador in Addis Ababa, and his colleague at a special send-off dinner for students for their awaited journey.
A memorable evening with His Excellency, the Swedish Ambassador in Addis Ababa, and his colleague at a special send-off dinner for students. 🌟🇸🇪 #DiplomaticMoments 📸 Photo credit: Michael Endale

In the whirlwind that was my first month at KI, I continued meeting so many incredible people. From my wonderful fellow classmates to corridor mates, new SI-scholars to senior SI-KI scholars, and my fellow KI digital ambassadors (yes, I’m one of them as a blogger), each connection has been a treasure.

Group selfie with diverse SI scholarship students at KI during a picnic during my first month at KI.
Cherishing moments with these incredible SI scholars at our KI picnic 🌍📸 #KIPicnicMemories Photo by: Yohannes
Selfie with excited digital ambassadors in KI-DA hoodies at our first meet-up.
Our first meet-up as digital ambassadors, and we’re sporting our brand-new hoodies with pride 🌐💻 #KIDigitalAmbassadors Photo by: Yohannes

These connections exposed me to a world of diversity – diverse backgrounds, cultures, and networks that I wasn’t accustomed to.

It’s been a journey of discovery in every sense.

4. Cultural experience

One of the most enriching aspects of my journey was the chance to immerse myself in Swedish culture. I had the opportunity to travel to various places, experiencing the beauty and diversity of Sweden. In fact, every country has its own highs and lows as Emily details in her blog.

I’ll take you on a journey to some incredible places I’ve been to and explored during my time here. These experiences and cultural exposure will be shared in detail in another blog post.

A sneak peek – “The funny thing is, Swedes may seem reserved at first glance, but trust me, they’re actually some of the most social folks you’ll ever meet. Let me spill the beans – they absolutely love getting together, sharing a fika, and celebrating even the tiniest moments. I mean, I’ve been to five welcome parties, so I should know!”

5. A love for my course

At Karolinska Institutet, I found a deep passion for my course. The comprehensive curriculum and dedicated faculty members have instilled in me a sense of purpose and determination. In a future blog post, I will delve into the details of my course and the impact it has had on my personal and professional growth.

I can’t wait to share my passion for what I’m studying.

Finally

But before that, as someone from a tropical country, I’m gearing up for a whole new adventure – experiencing the Swedish winter. And on my bucket list is Skiing!

Anyway, my journey from Ethiopia to Sweden to study at Karolinska Institutet has been a transformative experience. It has allowed me to pursue my dreams and connect with a global community of scholars. I am grateful for the opportunities and experiences that have shaped me into the person I am today.

So, dear readers, my first month at KI has been a flurry of aspirations accomplished and bonds formed. In a nutshell picture this: a mix of nerves and excitement, a backpack filled with dreams, and a heart full of curiosity. That’s the recipe for my unforgettable journey to KI. Stay tuned for more stories and adventures!

Yohannes - Health Economics Policy and Management

Yohannes - Health Economics Policy and Management

Hi there! My name is Yohannes, and I come from Ethiopia, the Cradle of Humanity. I've always been curious and ambitious, and my journey to Karolinska Institutet is a testament to that. I studied medicine and developed a deep fascination with the intersection of healthcare, economics, policy-making, and management. This passion led me to KI. I look forward to learning more about healthcare economics and becoming a part of the vibrant international community at KI. In my free time, I enjoy writing and drawing, always exploring and trying new things.

14 comments

k

k

Thanks for sharing. What an exciting journey!

Meti Kebede

Meti Kebede

Hi Yohannes! What an exciting journey! I’m a student at KI too. I would like to have a chat with you regarding a few of my questions. Please DM me back and good luck with all! e few

Helen Ta

Helen Ta

Hello Yohannes. Congratulations and thank you for sharing. May I send you an email. I have further questions that I hope you can help me with. Thank you. :)

Hiwot

Hiwot

Thank you for sharing Yohannes! Its inspiring.

Deqsan mahamed

Deqsan mahamed

Please help me

Birhan

Birhan

Thanks John for sharing your experience ! Keep shining You're representing the cradle of mankind 🇪🇹 in your field!

Rahel

Rahel

Thanks for the share and wishing you all the best 🌸

Zerihun

Zerihun

Thanks John for sharing your wonderful journey &experience

Luwam Kibrom

Luwam Kibrom

Thank you for taking us with you on your exciting and beautiful first month experience. I wonder🤔 what the next blog would be about? I can’t wait!

Meseret

Meseret

Thanks for sharing your mind-blowing journey and experience. I hope you will share us more stories.

Senait

Senait

Thank you Yohannes for sharing the experiences!

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