Oxford versus Karolinska

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James_0011
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by James_0011 » Wed May 10, 2017 11:19 am

Im not sure if this helps, but I went to a fairly expensive prestigious university in the US (although it certainly wasn't at the same level as oxford). and I regret it a lot. If I had to do it over again I would opt for a cheaper state university or even a super low ranked school that would give me a full scholarship.

I realized that I don't really care about a "career" and would much rather reach FI sooner. So, the question is do you care about your career? Or do you want to reach FI sooner?

You also state that you have a lot of different interests - having a graduate degree is going to make it harder to move from field to field not easier but I'm sure your realize this already.

Smashter
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by Smashter » Wed May 10, 2017 1:10 pm

I agree with James_0011. If you just want to be FI, prestige shouldn't matter.

I went to a US school on par with Oxford. It cost me a whole bunch of money. I have very minimal savings because I am still paying off my loan. All for a liberal arts degree!

If I could do it again I would make a different choice. It's not like my degree hasn't come in handy, it was just incredibly expensive.

Seems like you'll be fine either way, good luck!
Last edited by Smashter on Thu May 11, 2017 7:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

Crazylemon
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by Crazylemon » Wed May 10, 2017 2:52 pm

On the Van in Oxford side...You will likely need to move around a lot and certainly in the picturesque centre you would be unlikely to have any time unnoticed unless very stealth (not that there is any free parking there by and large anyway). As a wealthy pretty city people will take notice of an odd van if it stays around for long.

As an aside I find the idea of Oxford as a large bustling city somewhat amusing but then I guess I have 'london bias'.

On the Brexit challenge front. We haven't left! Yet...But be aware as other have mentioned in 2 years time staying probably won't be so easy, our just about to happen election will confirm that. Especially if you are thinking of public health given there Government aspect of that sector has had massive cuts which are set to continue making a large number of qualified people start looking for work...

From your Pro/cons it looks like you think Karolinska is a better fit.

saving-10-years
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by saving-10-years » Wed May 10, 2017 4:21 pm

+1 on parking in central Oxford being a notoriously big problem. Van living will involve a lot of moving around and/or taking a bus in from the outskirts. You might find this advice on parking zones useful https://www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/cms/cont ... zones-cpzs. While not car friendly it is cycle friendly (at least relative to other cities in the UK).

Being involved in college life is part of what you are paying the large fee for so it would be a great waste of opportunity if you were nowhere near your college for most of the time, especially on a one year course. In calculation of living costs remember that its not only a university town its a top UK tourist destination so relatively expensive CoL and busy all the time.

Congrats on having several great places to choose from.

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TheWanderingScholar
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by TheWanderingScholar » Wed May 10, 2017 5:32 pm

First, from raw financial numbers it makes sense to go to Karolinska. You don't pay tuition and you can always get a six month lease if you need to sleep in an apartment. Besides Stockholm is a cool city from the time when I visited a couple years ago.

Second, looking at future job prospects you might be limiting your connections to NGO's in EU proper as the current PM seems to be shooting herself in the foot recently as possible getting a decent deal, and burning brings while she is at it. (From an American's perspective who looks upon whats going in Europe currently)

Third, if you don't know what you are going to pursue a career, take the option that places you in less debt so as that will mean you have to worry about less things immediately.

Besides we need more people for a Baltic ERE Meetup ;)

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C40
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by C40 » Wed May 10, 2017 10:35 pm

If it's very important to you personally to be able to say "I went to Oxford" to impress people, go to Oxford.

Otherwise, go to Karolinska.

In either place, rent out a room somewhere. Put off the van thing until you can travel in it. Don't buy a Vanagon or Kombi. They look really cool, but they are old now and have nearly all gone to shit mechanically. If you try to drive one, you'll probably be fixing CV joints left and right and probably have to rebuild the engine a few times.

EMJ
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by EMJ » Thu May 11, 2017 12:16 am

you can always get a six month lease i
No- unless you are willing to pay lots, or find someone who is willing to rent you a room. The rental housing market in Stockholm is broken.

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TheWanderingScholar
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by TheWanderingScholar » Thu May 11, 2017 3:39 am

EMJ wrote:
Thu May 11, 2017 12:16 am
you can always get a six month lease i
No- unless you are willing to pay lots, or find someone who is willing to rent you a room. The rental housing market in Stockholm is broken.
Ah okay. Not sure exactly the rooming situation in Stockholm is.

Sorry about that.

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Riggerjack
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by Riggerjack » Thu May 11, 2017 8:35 am

Are you a social person? Or an introvert?

As an introvert, my opportunity to use the Prestige of Oxford would be very limited. So, if you are wired like me, I would say avoid Oxford.

However, most people are not like me. Most people would have use for te brand name.

You talk about going into politics/ working for NGOs. Is this because you have no ideas about how you want to spend time in the real world, and that answer works among your peers, or do you think you are a good fit for those? I don't ask because I care. I ask because you need to know to make a good decision.

So, my advice is if you are going careerist, go Oxford, skip the van, and network. If not, don't.

As to van living, that gets exponentially harder as population density and prosperity go up. Oxfordshire seems to score high on both counts. Go down the streets in Google maps, and try spotting free parking. If you choose to do this anyway, use Google maps to look for a greenhouse big enough to park in, thru the winter...

Either way, good luck.

Disclaimer: I didn't go to college. My advice is based on observation. Jacob's would be the opinion I would weigh most heavily, here.

Fiddle
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by Fiddle » Thu May 11, 2017 4:48 pm

Regarding living in a van in Oxford while studying. I would say it is possible but possibly not worth the it while studying at Oxford.

You might miss out on some of the social life of university and importantly you will have another factor to constantly be aware of - your van life, while your peers don't.

This is a good link for everything Oxford. https://www.dailyinfo.co.uk/

I lived in Oxford and the surrounds for several years some years ago and during that time I lived in a van for a few months. Oxford is a great place to live and to be able to say you went to Oxford Uni for the rest of your life, lucky person.

While in the van, I had a great time and found golden spots to park in, lots of places to go in the evenings and excellent free wash facilities. For what its worth I was there from February to April so I had some splendid weather and dark evenings to deal with.

The locals were generally friendly and I always moved about a bit while parked in residential streets.

I really know nothing about the other Uni, but Sweden looks a great place too.

PsAi
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by PsAi » Sat Jun 17, 2017 6:31 pm

I hadn't realized that there were more responses to this.


Quick update on the van front:

I've been fixing it up over the last few months and after all the work I put in it, will definitely go for living in it - no matter the place. It passed the warranty of fitness and is good to go for two years. Certainly, something will break down on the way, but I feel prepared for that.


Quick update on the #chooseauniversityfront:

I did a lot of reading and thought about some of the comments here and also gathered feedback from friends, family, and supervisors. By now, I am quite determined to go Oxford.

Why?
Short answer: Because it's Oxford.
Long answer: After diving into the realm of Oxbridge, weighing the university life, quality of teaching and its clout in virtually all fields off against the Karolinska Institute, I have come to the conclusion that going to Oxford is the better choice. The most important thing for me at this point is that I will have more optionality with a degree from Oxford than from Karolinska. Lastly, the possibilities that come with having gone to "Oxford" are a convincing argument for me as much as the impression that one makes on others when saying "I went to Oxford". Certainly, something that I will enjoy.

The drawback is the tuition, but I hope to work that out soon.

James_0011
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by James_0011 » Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:01 pm

@PsAi

Have you read the book 'status anxiety''?

ducknalddon
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by ducknalddon » Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:42 am

James_0011 wrote:
Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:01 pm
@PsAi

Have you read the book 'status anxiety''?
Written by an oxbridge graduate.

James_0011
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by James_0011 » Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:15 am

Isn't that the point of the book? The author has high status but realizes it isn't that great...

ducknalddon
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by ducknalddon » Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:32 am

There is real value to be derived from a good education, going to Oxford will open doors for PsAi. That is quite different to splashing out on shiny baubles to impress your friends which is what the book is about.

James_0011
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by James_0011 » Sun Jun 18, 2017 1:46 pm

@ducknalddon

Karolinska is ranked higher than several ivy league schools...

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Cloudberry
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by Cloudberry » Sat Jul 01, 2017 8:11 am

I guess you've already decided and I don't have any suggestions to give but I have been working at Karolinska Institutet and I live quite close to the university, if you have any specific question feel free to ask.

PsAi
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by PsAi » Mon Aug 07, 2017 4:38 am

Yup I'm decided to go to Oxford. Just bought the ferry ticket for the van. If I get around, I'll add some of the story to the journal. Thanks for all the feedback and suggestions guys.

pukingRainbows
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Re: Oxford versus Karolinska

Post by pukingRainbows » Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:16 am

I don't think you'll regret it.
All the best! I'm looking forward to hearing about how it goes.

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