Deciding to study abroad is a big step and the question of how to finance this great experience concerns most of the people that made the decision. So, here are some of my experiences on how to finance your studies at LiU 🙂
1. Part-time jobs
First things first, working in a part-time job is not the rule and finding a part-time job besides your studies can be difficult if you don’t speak Swedish. However, it is not impossible to find something where you can get along with English. Most of my classmates that have a part-time job, me included, work in the hotel and restaurant business. The good thing with working in a bar or a restaurant is that working hours seldomly overlap with course times at the university. The bad thing is that you mostly work nights and weekends. But for those of you who rely on working to finance their studies, this is a good opportunity to solve the distressing financial situation ;-). How can you get one of these jobs? Those jobs are usually not announced on the national job agency’s website arbetsformedlingen.se. Thus, I recommend walking into bars or restaurants and ask if they’re currently looking for staff.
If you are a fee paying student or applicant from a country outside the European Union, you can apply for several scholarships that cover at least your study fees. LiU offers scholarships for outstanding international students. You can find information on how to apply and who is eligable here: https://liu.se/en/article/scholarships
Please note that the application period is very short. It opens on April 3rd and closes on April 7th. Furthermore, there are scholarships offered by the Swedish Institute (SI) and other foundations, associations and organisations. You can have a look into these other options through the link above (scroll down).
CSN is the Swedish national study finance for Swedish nationals and foreigners with a comparable residence status. Getting CSN as an international student is unlikely and you shouldn’t rely on that option. However, it can be worth applying if to see if you’re eligable. The rules for foreigners are complicated and a little bit confusing. For example, you can get CSN if you have lived in Sweden for a certain time period before you started studying, if you are related to a Swedish resident or if you have a Swedish live-in partner, or if you are working in Sweden. In order to get more information on rules and regulations I recommend checking the website (https://www.csn.se/languages/english.html#expand:none) or giving them a call. They have an English speaking hotline. You can apply directly through their website. However, you require a Swedish personal identity number that you will get when you move here (see earlier blog post on Swedish bureaucracy).
I know that study finance is a distressing topic and I hope I could give you an overview on possibilities. From my experience I can tell that usually a solution will add up. Nevertheless, I highly recommend to have some savings that will bring you through the first few months in Sweden until you have figured something out. If you have questions to the topic don’t hesitate to ask me 🙂
All the best,