Why I Chose To Finish My Finance Studies in Germany
Why I Chose To Finish My Finance Studies In Germany
It may seem odd to some, that as someone studying finance in at a leading school in London that I should decide to finish my course in a foreign country, especially when Brexit looms and my path to living abroad complicates. For now though I can study in Europe at a discounted rate, in a country that has only been strengthened by the prospect of being the major player in the financial market. I chose Munich as my destination because it is home to the leading universities in Germany, and its international status.
Benefits to studying abroad
I had decided to study abroad after hearing of experiences from my older sister who had chosen to finish her studies in Australia and my older brother who spent a gap year in Vietnam. They had equally fascinating adventures, and I had seen first hand how travelling had accelerated their personal growth.
For me to achieve the same, I really wanted to strengthen my use of foreign language which I had not spoken since studying German at A level. The idea of having to speak it everyday and forcing myself to put my studies into practice was very exciting.
I was toying between calling this making friends, or widening my networking, but the reality is that after a year they are all friends. I have mostly German friends in Munich, although at the university I have befriended Americans, Spanish, and Dutch nationals. Being able to mingle with those from a different cultural background has been amazing fun, and I feel much more adventurous than I did in London where I got too comfortable.
Being friends with, and learning off different nationalities also brings different perspective. Traditionally, and historically, Germany has set out different fiscal policies to its English counterparts, favouring a debt-free society for example. These different ideologies only further my understanding of the economy, and has proven instrumental in me completing my degree before applying to enrol on a masters degree.
Quality of Lifestyle
While average costs are only slightly cheaper than in the UK, I have found that there is a higher emphasis on quality and healthier produce, so the actually true costs are much lower. The average rent for a one-bedroom flat is far cheaper in Munich compared to London or New York City.
I have also found that the quality of infrastructure is much better in Germany than England, which is what you would expect or a country who prides itself on organisation. The healthcare has been very good for me, although expensive as you will need to have valid health insurance, something that should also be thought about when considering dental check-ups.
The German visa application process is much like the requirements asked needed for a UK visa. You will need to have a letter confirming that you have been offered a place at a German university, and that you have the funding required to live for the duration of your stay. On the immigration website, they advise that this would be 7908 Euros, although I managed to ease this by having a scholarship offer. It recommends that you apply at least three months in advance, which is a good suggestion, as it is a lot of work to move yourself from one country to another.
I would recommend getting help when completing a student visa application. I used the services of specialist immigration lawyers in London who advised me the whole way through the process, and instructed me to apply for a permit of residence.