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European Studies
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Sarah Osei-Bonsu

'European Studies has so much more variety than other programmes, and gives me the chance to learn Arabic, which has always been an ambition of mine.'

Sarah Osei

Sarah Osei-Bonsu is a Bachelor's in European Student specialising in European Law. She shares her experiences of the programme and the city of Amsterdam.

I went to an international high school in Ghana where I did my A-levels. I had no idea what or where to study after high school. I applied for many different programs at several universities across Europe. My decision came down to weighing the pros and cons of all of them. I realised the University of Amsterdam was the best fit for me because I wanted to be in a multicultural metropolitan. And European Studies had so much more variety than other programmes and gave me the chance to learn Arabic, which had always been an ambition of mine.

I didn’t know quite what to expect, but I was certain it would be very interesting and I wasn’t disappointed. European Studies ended up being much broader than I expected and delved much deeper. It made me contemplate things outside the program on a European level. But it also made me very critical of how I understand concepts such as history and culture and has lead me to endeavour to learn more outside my studies.

I chose Arabic, which is the only non-European language in the program. I wanted to get the most out of my study. I have always been interested in the Arabic language and culture and I wanted the challenge. I recently travelled a bit in the Middle East and know now that I want to pursue a career in that region and learning Arabic at UVA is greatly helping me to work towards that.

I chose European Law as my major, initially because it was practical for my career ambitions – I want to work in diplomacy or with human rights law – but when I had the course briefly in the first year I realised I enjoyed actually reading laws and cases. 

I was accepted into the Honours Programme so I am really looking forward to starting that next semester. And I am looking into possibly doing an internship abroad over summer.  

I love Amsterdam.  The city itself is really an experience and I consider myself lucky to spend three years here. I don’t see myself living here in the future but it is definitely always going to be an important time in my life.