Tarjei B. Aaser: Martin in one sentence? Quiet, safe and comfy place with an amazing student community!

Tarjei B. Aaser is student from Norway, who found out, that field of medicine is more than hobby to him. Together with his friends, he decided to apply to study at The Jessenius Faculty of Medicine and passed it. Today, he is starting his 6th year, which means final year of his studies.

How is thelevel of education at the Faculty of Medicine in Martin, what would he recommend applicants to in order to pass an entrance examination or how is international community in Martin like? All these questions were kindly answered by Tarjei.

Tarjei, thank you very much for accepting our invitation for an interview. Can you please say few words about you ? What do you study at the Jessenius Faculty of Medicine in Martin and in which study year are you currently?

I’m a 29 year old „boy“ from Oslo, Norway. Studying general medicine at JFMED in Martin. Just finished the 5th year, now entering into the 6th and final year in Martin.

How did you learn about option to study medicine in Slovakia? What were other alternatives and why did you decide for Martin in the end?

I was studying a year of pre-med, included in the Osteopathy education that I also was doing at the same time, when I figured out that I liked the medical subject way better than the manual medicine of Osteopathy etc. The school that I was attending gave us info about the upcoming entrance test in order to get admitted. We were a group of friends who all sat down, read chemistry, biology and then went all-in on leaving Norway for an adventure in Slovakia.

Student of General medicine in Slovakia coming from Norway.

Tarjei – Student from the Jessenius Faculty of Medicine in Martin

Were you (or your parents) afraid of something before coming to Slovakia? If so, what was yours/theirs biggest fear and was it relevant?

No, not really. My parents are very open-minded and not really too worried.We did our research and everything went well. My mother had actually visited Czechoslovakia during the Communist era, and thought is sounded like a great adventure for me.

Can you describe level of education, teachers and professors at Jessenius Faculty of Medicine in Martin?

I believe the teachers and professors are highly educated within their own subjects, but the teaching style is quite the opposite from what we are used to in Scandinavia. A more rigid way of teaching, with little or no room for creativity or discussion. Sometimes this has caused problems and uproar, but we learn along the way, and during the later years it has created no major obstacles or difficulties.

Which are yours most favourite subjects and why? And which subjects were the hardest?

I enjoy a whole lot of subjects, but I must say Pathology & Ophthalmology. Pathology is the first real peek into the world of diseases, while in ophthalmology we had an amazing teacher originally from Argentina (I think so at least). Pathology & Anatomy were probably the two hardest subjects, a lot of info in short amounts of time.

There are many international students in Martin. Do you support each other when preparing for examination or in other means?

Depending on your classmates and in which year you are studying. Our classmates are amazing, we all know each other and have helped each other out in desperate times of need. Sharing of info, having open forum on the internet etc. We have a great group of people from all over the world: Portugal, Poland, Norway, Sweden and some other countries.

Our classmates are amazing, we all know each other and have helped each other out in desperate times of need.

What new skills have you already acquired thanks to studying medicine abroad and what are your chances with finding place after you graduate?

Well, hard to say. I guess some language skills, definitely medical skills and also some communicating skills I believe. Greater knowledge about other nations and their culture. We wish it was a bit more of practical teaching and focus on practical procedures and so forth.

Imagine you are a tutor of applicant who are deciding to come to study medicine in Martin. What would you recommend him/her to do in order to prepare for entrance examination and what should he/she arrange after being accepted?

Check out the school‘s web page in order to obtain knowledge about the requirements to be admitted, and the list of subjects tested on the entrance exam. Chemistry and biology!

What social activities do you have when living in Martin? Is it good place for students?

It’s a quiet place for students, but with an amazing student community. Parties during the weekend, hiking trips, bike riding, football, running, skiing, swimming, martial arts, hockey, you name it.

It’s a nice place for students to live, safe and comfy. But I think most people wish to get back home after six years abroad, due to lack of family nearby, friends etc.

How do you like the city? Which is your most favourite place to stay and chill out?

I like it. You get used to the place after a while, even though it’s a very different place from what most of us are used to. Short distances, easily accessible grocery stores, training facilities and all the other things poor students need to get trough the week.

Short distances, easily accessible grocery stores, training facilities and all the other things poor students need to get trough the week.

For partying it has to be Cosmopolitan/“Vegas“. For relaxation, maybe going for a hiking trip in the mountains or going for a jogging.

Thank you for great interview and good luck with your finals!