For those last days of June, I decided to do a small serie of articles with useful informations about what will happen when you will arrive to Sweden. They will have as theme : the Arrivals Days, the Welcome Programs, and the International Student Union (GIC, IntU and IntET). I hope they will help you to chase away your possible fears and doubts and fully enjoy your stay here. Welcome To Göteborg and see you soon =).
International Students Unions in Göteborg
Student unions are an important thing in Sweden and it is common for the students to join one of them. Among those student unions, some of them have a branch specialised in “taking care” of the international students coming for an exchange or as free mover (students here for a whole programme). In Göteborg, three unions are there to welcome you : IntU for the students at the business school Handels, IntEt for the students in medicine at Sahlgrenska and Göta International Committee (GIC) which is here for all the students. As an international student, you are automatically part of them and you don’t have to pay any fees to ask for help or participate to the events.
Göta International Committee
As a member of GIC (former GISA), I will mainly introduce you to this student union, but similar values and activities are present in all of them.
Who are we ? What do we do for you ?
We are volunteers students from various countries, living currently in Sweden and interested in welcoming and helping international students. We enjoy investing our time in organising events to help you finding new friends through the welcome programme (c.f. latest article). We also like to organise events throughout the whole semester. We are also here to help you with any administrative problem with university or in general.
Beside organising big events and activities, we also have a buddy programme, in which a group of students (10 to 20) is associated with a “local” (not necessarily Swedish but knowing the city and the Swedish way of life). This buddy is here to help its group more specifically, with more personal issues and of course organise events in small groups. Those groups are usually made by shared points of interests, therefore the events can change depending on your buddy (hanging out, cooking, visiting the city, lasergame…)
Finally GIC, has also some group of interests that anyone can join, managed by some of us. As far as I know, we have an international dining group, a photo-walk group, some sports groups… Don’t hesitate to ask us to join a group, or even if you have some idea to create a new one. We are really here for you and open to every idea.
GIC proposes to the Students different things and not all the same persons are involved in the different part. We have a board in charge of the global organisation, the management of the fundings and the communication. Around this board, some students are just here to help organise activities, some others just here to be a buddy. Therefore, if your own buddy cannot help you with a particular problem, or if you have a suggestion, please contact a member of the board who will send you to the appropriate person.
How to contact us?
You can contact us easily by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or through our Facebook page or within our Facebook group for the next semester. Do not hesitate to ask us anything or to contact any of the board member by PM.
Local : How to join us and why ?
You are currently living in Sweden and would like to give a bit of your time for such incredible adventure ? You are more than welcomed. We are always looking for more people to help us to organise our events or be a buddy for the new students. You are totally free to invest the time you want and every hand, even for a short time, is welcomed.
Send us a message by email or PM and we will add you to our internal group and explain you what you can do.
If you are staying for one year or even the whole master, do not hesitate to join us for the second semester or the second year, we are always glad to see new volunteers. Last year, we had a really good surprise with lot of “new” students joining us for the second semester.
Being part of GIC, is a real opportunity to meet students from all over the world and help them to integrate in their new life in Sweden. It is truly an adventure from a human and cultural point of view that can only make you richer. Also, if you want/need for the future, the president of GIC can write you a recommendation letter.
We are all looking forward to meet you as international student or as a future GIC member,