Tartu, you will never stop surprising, challenging or supporting me. You will never leave me one day left without a reason to get up and push myself to do. Do something. Anything. Neither I will ever be able to forget you. So now, when I’m already halfway trough my 5th semester here and just one step away from graduation, I start to feel an aching pain in my heart that reminds me that all this will soon end.

I remember as if it was today, first day here in Tartu, away from family, friends, away from anything that I knew or trusted. It started in just one second that I had already jumped into new life. Just like that in one second English was my language, course mates were my new family, teachers were my parents and faculty was my home. Never had I known that such a small city would be able to change me in such a short notice.

What’s so outstandingly special about this modest Baltic city?

When in fact, there is really nothing much not to love about Tartu. Yes, the winters can become impressively depresing and unpredictable weather can really bug you to death. And, yes, Lossi street hill might be too steep to climb every single morning and during the road you will for sure re-think at least 10 times whether lecture is worth the hustle of getting up the hill to the faculty, but then again you will never find a more perfect place then this. At least for me.

I guess the thing that I will miss the most is that Tartu is really a student city. Literarlly everywhere you will go, you will meet some students, and in fact there is a high chance that they will come from completely other side of the world from your home country. Either they will be your course mates, dorm mates or just a person that seemed nice to talk to while going to lecture. You will overcome the fear of talking to strangers and it will open up doors for you to explore so much more about other countries, their cultures and world will really seem way much smaller.


Proximity here in Tartu is just to die for because everything is literally 10 minutes walk. Either it’s dormitory, faculty, sports club, cafe or club ( and don’t you dare tellling me that it’s not damn convinient to be at home in few minutes after a good night out). And as everything is so conviniently close, you may end up realizing that you know all of the streets, all of the short cuts. The funny-nostalgic thing is that every single corner will remind you of something so close. Place where you always went for a walk and met a person who most probably will end up as your life-long friend. Already traditional place where you went with your friends for a tea, coffee or some sinfully delicious cake. Even your own faculty and the rooms where you spent so much time studying for exams will become just like home. By the time when you will end your time here in Tartu you will have walked trough your own footsteps at least hundreds of times adding yet another memory. And these memories will never go away, they will just accumulate and remain here even if you never come back.

Lastly, the University

Let’s just forget for a second all the rankings and education system, all the things that always could be improved and let’s be trully honest. I can put my hand on my heart and say that University of Tartu has been the most supportive and sincere compared to any other Univeristy I have ever heard of. Either it was an issue regarding resident permit, study loans or accomodation. Either it was an exhange programme or internship that you didn’t know how to apply to or even a project idea that you were so excited to realize, yet not able to do it on your own. You could always turn to any person of University and they would always be there for you. At one moment all of the people of the University became so close that even the most strict teachers trully became those who you were happy to see and smile. University of Tartu made me feel safe and protected, it made me feel like home and now I’m not fully sure whether after graduating I will be going back to my home or I will continue living in Tartu.

Liene (Latvia)
BA in Business Administration