Why the Netherlands?
"The Netherlands has the largest range of English-taught programs in Europe."
Deciding on a country and university to start your education can be challenging. While I was doing my research, I had 10 pages of university choices with the pros and cons of them. When I narrowed down my choices, the Netherlands always came up first, and here are my reasons to start my master’s journey here.
High-quality education at reasonable costs
Whether you are coming from the EU or non-EU country, the Netherlands tuition fees are much more affordable compared to other countries. Also, there are some good scholarships that you can apply in addition to the university’s own scholarships such as Orange Knowledge Program, Holland Scholarship, and the Orange Tulip Program.
When you look at the education, Dutch people have different teaching systems than other countries. It is interactive and the students are taught not just to think for themselves but to work together in groups. It makes you develop skills that will be useful in the working field. Such as analytic thinking, practical problem solving, working in a team, and creative thinking. You can also check the international polls like THE World University Ranking, the QS Top Universities, and the Academic Ranking of World Universities to get more insight about the quality.
Any other thing I personally like about Dutch universities is that they mostly have their specific education field and they are focusing to be the best in that globally. To give an example, I am doing my master’s in Nutrition and Health at Wageningen University. I chose to be in Wageningen because the university is based on life sciences, human health, and agriculture and it has been pronounced the world's best agricultural university for a fifth consecutive year.
The Netherlands has the largest range of English-taught programs in Europe. You can easily interact with the students as an international student and furthermore with the Dutch people since 70% of the Dutch population speaks English. Because of that, there are so many international students who got attracted by it.
Additionally, this diversity of the students makes you feel at home. You can easily find someone from your home country and also you will find the opportunity to get familiar with a lot of new cultures. Knowing different people from different ethnicities gives you advantages in the working field as well, since the companies have a diverse environment too.
The Netherlands has beautiful nature and city life. It is quite a small country when compared to other European countries but it gives the opportunity to live the city life while you can easily enjoy nature just with 30 min. of a drive. On weekdays you can enjoy the city life between your lectures while at the weekends you can communicate with the beautiful nature of the Netherlands by traveling around easily.
Another point is that in 2019, it is announced by the UN World Happiness Report that the Netherlands is the 5th happiest country in the world. This classification takes into account a lot of reasonable marks to measure, like, life expectancy, social satisfaction, generosity, freedom, and support.
As the Netherlands located in the center of Europe, it is a perfect point to start the journey to other European countries. Traveling to other famous cities like Paris, London, Brussels, and Berlin is easily possible with the train. Also, you can gather with a group of friends and drive up the other nearby cities within hours.
By all that said, I feel so lucky that I had a chance to study and live in this atmosphere. I really overwhelmed with these many good opportunities and starting my education in the Netherlands made me see the possibilities that await me in the future, with its educational, open-minded, and friendly environment.