Record-breaking amount of incoming exchange students welcomed to the Sibelius Academy

This academic year, a record-breaking amount of exchange students – altogether 85 students - are arriving to study at the Sibelius Academy. In late August and early September, they have been orientating to their studies and getting to know the ways of the university. One of them is music education master student Michiel Dondeyne from LUCA School of Arts in Leuwen, Belgium. He is spending this Autumn as an exchange student at the Sibelius Academy Music Education department.

- From the beginning of my studies I knew that I wanted to attend an Erasmus exchange period somewhere, and the Sibelius Academy was one of the institutions offered to us. I looked at the programme and it was very appealing to me. The school and the University has a very professional look, and I feel like we are not here as ”only students” but are also appreciated as future professionals. Spending this much time abroad is something I’ve never done before so that includes many new aspects, the one thing I’m really looking forward to is making new friends all over the world. I love saunas, too, so I was very happy to come here, says the enthusiastic man on his first days in Helsinki.

- My special interest is in composition and I like many genres. I have done writing for a pop group I play in but have also written for a more classical ensemble. I’m also interested in composing together and co-writing; it would be fascinating to see what it leads to. In my own university I find we are very open minded towards different opinions – with always the tendency to reflect; what did I achieve or learn, what might I do better next time?

Spending an international student exhange period abroad is quite a common way to enrich one’s studies. During their exhange periods, music students may get a chance to enjoy the teaching of a teacher who is especially interesting to them for example in a specific instrument, repertoire or genre. Read more about student exchange