Internationals go Greifswald

Oriana Sánchez


Studies in home country

Biology (B.Sc.), University of Tolima, Ibagué, Colombia

Activity in Greifswald

Master of Science Landscape Ecology and Nature Conservation (LENC)


12/2016 - 06/2018

Why did I come to Germany?

"As a Biologist, I was always fascinated about the nature and the complex interactions of the ecosystems since I grow up in Colombia: a wonderful place where nature is the main character. On the other hand, I was very curious to experience the other face of nature in the temperate regions, to face the different seasons, colors, landscapes, culture and experience this by myself. For that reason, I decided to come to Germany and specifically to Greifswald. In my eyes, a cool place to start the adventure in Europe and continue building my carrier in the natural sciences."

June 2018 - My second year in Germany

Meeting at Greifswald's market place


The second year in Germany was very fast and fascinating.

During this time, I continued working on my thesis and attended different lectures such as vegetation ecology, conservation genetics and plant experimental biology.
Because of that I enlarged my theoretical and experimental knowledge and the most important part was that I felt during this time I grew as a person.

So, If I have to summarize my experience in Greifswald and abroad I just can say that it was a fantastic experience. So, if you are thinking to make this nice trip abroad do not be scared and start preparing your luggage.

I promise you, life will surprise you or rather Greifswald will!

October 2017 - Excursion to Helgoland

Participants of the Helgoland excursion
Seals relaxing at the beach


Another great adventure was the participation of the excursion to Helgoland as part of the program.

In this time, my classmates and I discovered the interesting aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems of Helgoland. A beautiful group of island located in the North Sea.

It was very surprising for me that even these cold ecosystems exhibit several species of animals from marine mammals such as the seals to incredible invertebrates.

This experience was important because it was the perfect occasion to share time and work together with classmates from many countries. And one more time I was totally convinced that cultural diversity is the key factor to have wonderful results and unforgettable moments.

March 2017 - Great time in the research group

Meeting in Vietnam
Typical Vietnamese landscape


From the second semester on, I started working on my master thesis.

In March 2016, I traveled to Vietnam to collect the samples for my thesis together with another classmate that also worked on a similar topic.

In this research group, I learned different molecular techniques and many other skills such as scientific writing, preparation of moist chamber cultures and soft skills fundamental to the research work. Moreover, I had the possibility to work with high qualified researchers and technicians who work everyday on interesting innovative topics, develop scientific reports and by this way contributing to the scientific community.

So, was very excited for me to be part of the process by participating with my research topic.

February 2017 - End of the first semester

Exploring Greifswald's surroundings


At the end of the first semester, I had a good impression of the educational system since I found very interesting that the students can inscribe the exams when they feel prepared or the perfect occasion to present them.
This, in my opinion, encourages the students to take the time to prepare for the exams and enjoy the whole process of learning.
On the other hand, I had the great opportunity to be part of General and Special Botany research group of the Institute of Botany and Landscape Ecology were later I developed my master thesis in the fascinating topic of Myxomycetes.

December 2016 - First time in Germany

University of Greifswald in winter

Since the beginning of my trip to Germany, I was totally convinced that this was an excellent opportunity to continue with my studies, learn about a new culture and increase my work network. Nevertheless, at that time I did not have a clue this was going to be one of the best ideas I could ever have.

I arrived in Berlin in December so the temperature at the beginning was cold for me but rapidly this cold feeling was changing to curiosity and good memories.
The first weeks were very short since I was busy studying, making some documents and adapting to the cute city of Greifswald. I found the environment very comfortable in this place since it was very easy to concentrate in the lectures, move to every part of the city, to recreate and make friends in the evening.  On the other hand, I also faced some challenges during this first period such as the short days in winter, the cold temperatures and the Christmas time without my family for the first time. Nevertheless, in Greifswald, I met wonderful people that now I can consider as good friends and my family in Germany.