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The journey has begin: from the Caribbean to Sweden

To go from the Caribbean to Sweden has been a long way and I’m not just talking about miles.

But I’ve learned that: “The most reliable way to predict the future is to create it”. So I’m creating mine.

Imagine you really want something, you see it everywhere and you find yourself thinking about it in the most random places, therefore you focus, make a plan and work for it.

Imagine then one morning you wake up and you find an email with the most exciting news of all, you are going to Sweden, you start running around the house still wearing your pijamas, because you’re happy and cant hide it, so you pack your bags and go to that place that you’ve always dreamed of.

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Now you open your eyes and there you’re, what once were other people’s pictures and snaps of their everyday routine, now it’s your new reality.

But let’s go back to the beginning. How did I end up in Sweden? It’s a question I’ve been asked so many times in the last 3 months. I come from Dominican Republic, a warm, sunny and colourful island in the Caribbean Sea.

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My family is big and very supportive.

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And I’ve always had an adventurous spirit, eager to discover the world, different cultures and people.

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After I finished my Bachelor’s degree at my hometown University I started looking for Master programs abroad and scholarships.

A process that feels like hiking a very steep mountain: It demands strength and commitment, you have to reflect about what you really want and why. Also you have to be ready to ask for references, fill out applications, write personal statements, go to interviews and yet get rejected not because you’re not good enough but because maybe it was not your time. Instead of feeling defeated you have to go home, reflect on what you did, improve and try again.

During my search I came across this blog and one thing lead to another until in a blink of an eye I was applying to Lund University and the Swedish Institute Scholarship. Then it was all about waiting, and waiting and some more waiting.

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My YES finally came and looked like this:

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Can you imagine? The moment when your dreams are so close to come true, the moment when you finally made it to the top of the mountain and you get emotional, and happy and grateful all together.

It was time to start a new chapter of my life, this time in SWEDEN.

So I packed my bags and yes, my mom made sure I was not forgetting anything, because a trip from the Caribbean to Sweden is a long way to go.

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And a little more…

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It was hard to say goodbye to the only place I’ve called my home for so many years, but in order to start new things you have to be willing to leave others behind and just take what you can carry in your heart.

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After almost 15 hours of airports and planes I was finally here. For the next 2 years the city of Helsingborg will be my new home.

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I am living my dream and want to encourage you to do the same, don’t be afraid to fail, believe in yourself, take the chance and make it happen, because if is not you, who; if is not now, when?

Meanwhile let’s walk this journey together, an adventure of learning and exploring.

/Ivanna

Ivanna avatar

8 Comments

  • Anali Guzman Molina • 25 Oct 2016 at 7.56 am Reply

    Hello! Ivanna, I’m also from Dominican Republic study at Chalmers! Enjoyed reading your blog! And the memories of the caldero and Pilón. Hope you are getting ready for the cold!

    • Ivanna
      Ivanna • 29 Oct 2016 at 5.01 pm Reply

      Hola Anali, gracias por tu comentario. So nice to see other dominicas around here. Have a great stay in Sweden and yes… Im preparing for the cold hahah 🙂 / Ivanna

  • Doménica • 18 Oct 2016 at 5.56 pm Reply

    Hello Ivanna, I’m from Ecuador and willing to study in Sweden 🙂 I found your post super inspiring, THANK YOU!! I hope you are doing great in this new chapter 🙂

    • Ivanna
      Ivanna • 18 Oct 2016 at 6.43 pm Reply

      Hola Doménica! gracias por tu mensaje. I’m really happy you find it meaningful. You will love Sweden!/ Ivanna

  • Lara Nogueira • 16 Oct 2016 at 8.14 pm Reply

    Hello Ivana,

    I am a huge fan of Study in Sweden blog and I would like to welcome you to the team!

    Be sure I will be reading all your posts, specially because I am also going to apply for Lund University and SISS!!

    I have a question: Why did you chose to live in Helsingborg instead of Lund or even Malmo?

    Hope to hear from you soon!

    • Ivanna
      Ivanna • 18 Oct 2016 at 6.58 pm Reply

      Thank you so much Lara, good luck on your application. About your question depending on the master you chose some are teach on campus Helsingborg and other in Malmo, but most of them are in Campus Lund. So make sure you checked that before applying. Anyways I think all of the 3 cities have their charm! Let me know if I can help you with anything else / Ivanna

  • Mobolaji • 13 Oct 2016 at 6.57 pm Reply

    Hey, Ivanna. Great that you’ve started writing here. Looking forward to more of your write-ups

    • Ivanna
      Ivanna • 13 Oct 2016 at 8.00 pm Reply

      Hey Mobolaji! thanks for your message hope you can find many useful and inspiring things here and also with the other fellow bloguers :)/ Ivanna

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