What else should a PhD student do?

Through making the blog, I have detailed the process I have been through. The past year has seen me being stuck in the UK, moving to Denmark and being able to start my own research. I have talked more in depth about this and have explained some of what it is like moving abroad to study. However, I have now been doing my PhD for a year and have lived in Denmark for eight months and wanted to update you on what else I have been doing now I have settled into the city of Aarhus.

Moving abroad to live for an extended period of time has been a strange process. You move your entire life to a new unknown place and leave what you know behind. It has been an exciting process and as part of InterCat I have done a lot of new things as I have talked about in this blog. From my experience, you should do three things once you have settled into your new city. The first is to see more of the country you have moved too, the second is to try to do or try something new every so often and the third is to keep up contact with the people you have met up to this point. I would recommend anyone who moves to a different country to work or study, to do these things. I realized that in 8 months I had not seen much of Denmark as it is easy to forget there is more to your new home than what is in your immediate surroundings (as nice as they are). Therefore, to remedy this I have been on road trips to the very north of the country, to a place called Skagen.

The map of Denmark with Skagen labeled

I did this with a few of my friends I made when I lived in my student dorm and it was good to catch up with them again. We stopped several places along the way to Skagen and it was a good experience to see more of the rural parts of Denmark. In a few weeks, I will be also visiting the capital city, Copenhagen. I figured it was about time I see Denmark’s biggest city and see what it is like on the Danish islands (despite being assured its worse than the mainland by the Jutlanders). Despite going for only a weekend, I have been assured we have a full plan of things to do and so I am really looking forward to it.

Covid restrictions have been lifted here too, which is great as it means we are now able to enjoy things again. It has meant that the new courses I am taking and teach can once again be in person, which is a much more enjoyable experience.

It is good to remember when you are a PhD student to experience as much as you can as you have a great opportunity to do so and it helps you have some variation so you are not in the laboratory all the time!

We saw the point where the Baltic meets the North sea (it was very cold)

Posted by Alfred Hopkinson

A PhD student at InterCat studying the formation of organic molecules on carbonaceous grains.

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