Chat With Our Students

Do you wonder what it is like to study at SSE Riga? Want to know more about the Bachelor study programme and student life? Worried about accommodation, health services or average living expenses in Riga? 

Send an e-mail to one of our friendly student ambassadors – they’re here to help and share their personal experiences. 

If you've got a question about the application process, our best advice is to send an email to admission@sseriga.edu.

 

Elizabete

Elizabete from Rēzekne, Latvia 
erupa@sseriga.edu

"I know how hard it is to choose where to study after graduating from high school. Especially if you have various fields of interest (from history to math and from languages to arts, as it was in my case). So don't hesitate to ask me any questions, I will be glad to answer them and help you as much as I can."

 

Matiss

Matīss from Saldus, Latvia 
mkokins@sseriga.edu

"The one thing that defines my SSE Riga life the best is a never stopping strive for the perfect balance between social and academic life. It is a family-like community and always a helpful hand of the faculty, making sure that we keep up with the sometimes challenging study routine and have the most out of social life. That hands you the perfect equation for the most amazing student experience SSE Riga has to offer. Let me be the one to ensure you about that - feel free to contact me!"

 

elva

Elva Paula from Limbaži, Latvia
epmartinsone@sseriga.edu

"Things I love the most: my friends, coffee, and making new friends.. thus I'll be more than happy to answer your questions and become your buddy! As I faced a lot of doubts when applying to SSE Riga myself, I know the feeling when you are in need of a little push in the right direction, so if you feel similar, do not hesitate to write to me!"

 

liga

Līga from Vaiņode, Latvia
lmame@sseriga.edu

"I'm a first-year student at SSE Riga. I am doing my Bachelor's in Economics and Business. However, the major you chose to study in university doesn’t mean that’s all, hobbies picked up in high school or even before that are still a part of us all. For me, that’s dancing, sports, traveling, music, debate mentor and the list goes on. It’s not impossible to multitask while in university, with the right people around to motivate you. Any questions about studies, the application process, student life, etc? - Just ask! Looking forward to receiving your messages!"

 

Evelina

Evelīna Daniela from Riga, Latvia
edbaltina@sseriga.edu

"For my whole life I have lived in Riga and always studied here. Now I am a Year 1 student at SSE Riga. While studying can be exhausting, I still find the time for myself and talking to friends, even during Covid times when it has to be online. The things I enjoy most are spending time with friends and family, and the occasional satisfaction of a really good grade on an exam. I feel like life right now for me needs to be a good balance of studies and adventures, which I try to do my best to achieve."

 

Titas

Titas from Lithuania
tgalkinas@sseriga.edu

"Hey! My name is Titas, and I am a first-year student from Lithuania. If you are considering SSE Riga as your university, you most likely have some questions regarding the study program, organizations, or maybe even the student life. I am here to provide you all the necessary information, so feel free to contact me any time!"

 

kris

Kristina from Saint Petersburg, Russia
kmatiakh@sseriga.edu

"I am a professional dancer and make-up artist studying economics and business now. Russian girl trying to live alone in another country and being responsible. Love to talk, meet new people, and drinking coffee in the mornings. I will gladly share first-hand information about SSE Riga."

 

Daryna

Daryna from Lviv, Ukraine
dkoval@sseriga.edu

"I have an explorer mindset and enjoy learning new things and meeting people with different life perspectives. Traveling, meeting friends, and cooking are the things that help me to restore my energy. I like to stay active by finding a balance between academics, extracurricular activities, social life, and a good sleep. In SSE Riga, I found a balance I was looking for. Now, I am happy to share with you my SSE Riga experience, or talk about life in general."

 

Valerya

Valeryia from Slutsk, Belarus
vmakhlai@sseriga.edu

"Work, study, have fun, occasionally die of tiredness. Don't get involved in most of the party life of SSE Riga, but if you are a quiet person who seeks for a like-minded student to get consultations on the coziest places to hide in, I am here to give you the guide."

 

Ahmad

Ahmad Jahid Sakhi from Kabul, Afghanistan
asakhi@sseriga.edu

"Hi! I am passionate about finance and accounting. I like to work in consulting firm. I enjoy reading books and traveling to different countries to learn more about this amazing planet. This school is designed to help you to discover the joy of learning. Contact me and I tell you more!"


 

Student Blogs - In Their Own Words

 

Seminars - learning & teaching experience

Written by Aiva

Before starting university, I knew that there would be mainly two types of teaching and learning methods - lectures and seminars. However, I did not fully understand what seminars are and how they are organized. Of course, every university, even every study program, and each of its courses has its specifics, but there is one big difference in the very essence of seminars at SSE Riga.

What is different at SSE Riga from other universities in Latvia is that seminars here are led also by students, not only lecturers. It depends on the course, but mostly seminars are led by students themselves.

Students who are leading seminars are called teaching assistants or simply TAs, and they are students year higher who had received the best results in the course a year ago when they took it. For example, Year 2 students lead seminars to Year 1 students and Year 3 students lead seminars for Year 2 students. The students who will be leading seminars are chosen from applicants for this position and they are the ones that got the best grades in the particular course. They are usually a group of students (about 4 or so) who work closely together with each other and with the lecturer to prepare for the seminars, solving the tasks given by the lecturer in advance, before the actual seminar is happening.

Then, when the seminar is held, TAs are explaining the tasks to students in groups - one TA for 30 students. Students can ask questions if something is unclear, and the TA will try their best to explain, give examples, and so on. If there arises some misunderstanding or the TA is not sure, he or she asks the question that is unclear to the lecturer and in the next seminar clarifies everything for his or her group of students.

Because of online learning, there are some changes also in this aspect of studies. There are still approximately 4 people as TAs for a course, but they are leading the seminars online now. Sometimes there are two TAs in the Zoom seminar, sometimes one. They are dividing the seminars they have to lead between them, and each TA puts an effort into helping students.

However, leading seminars is not the only thing TAs do, they are also checking students’ assignments (homework tasks) and in some courses even grading the exams. As with everything, there are pluses and minuses to it.

TAing takes some of the students’ time and every TA still attends all of their courses and is learning their own course material, doing their own assignments. Another thing that can happen sometimes is that TAs get confused themselves when there is some very complicated problem in a task or a concept is unclear and confusing. But that happens very rarely and is not such a bad thing because it gives Year 1 students a possibility to dig deeper into the concept and they can even prove their reasoning to the TA. Continuing with plusses, TAing helps to strengthen TA’s knowledge and makes them much more confident about the course material that they are teaching. Additionally, they can give students examples that are easily relatable since TAs have been in the same place just a year ago and they know very well what were the most difficult things to understand.

I have to admit that at first, it seemed a bit odd that students, only a year older and only a year ahead of me in studies, are teaching some of the course material and helping me and other Year 1 students to correctly do the tasks given to us by the lecturers. Now I have adjusted to it and it feels completely normal.

I guess it takes time for everyone to adjust to new circumstances and the best thing that one can do is use all the opportunities that have appeared. So, regarding this a little bit of unexpected university experience, I have decided that I want to be a teaching assistant, too. That is why I am studying hard and truly appreciating that I can learn from the best. And quite likely, I will be writing a blog post about TAing next year from an entirely different perspective.

See you in seminars!

Scared from English?

Written by Elizabete

Since childhood, we all the time study, write tests, are compared with others, and have the same valuation and rules as everybody else. But how is it possible to judge by the same principles if people are different? This big question appears, when in the 12th grade you apply for university and your study place depends on your grades, however, maybe you didn’t like a few important subjects, or maybe you just had competition in sports during school days. Because of the nonstop competition, students are scared to try something new, get out of their comfort zone, and take risks. Being scared is normal, but you don’t have to be scared about studies in English, especially in SSE Riga, and let me tell you why.

Let me tell you my story - I am a girl from Riga, Latvia, and one of the biggest BUT points when I chose university was my English. I wasn’t the best or even average English speaker in the class, and I didn’t even dream about full-time studies in English. Till the last moment when I had to give an answer to my decision, I wasn't sure if this is what I really wanted to do. Studies in my native language would be easier, and most likely I would end up with a few of my old friends, but here...everything would be new and scary. However, already in the first lecture in SSE my fears started to fade away.

Firstly, professors understand that we come with different knowledge; therefore, they use easier language so that the language barrier doesn't make the material harder for us. From my experience, the first course was scarry – a lot of English, a lot of new vocabulary, a lot of new information, however, the professor talked slowly, repeated herself more times so we can catch up, used less terminology, but more examples from life, and was ready to explain differently more times till we understood. Since we had a partly online format, I didn't know how bad my English is compared to others, but this helpful and encouraging attitude from lecturers motivated me to stop stressing about my English that much and think about course materials.

Secondly, seminars are led by Year 2 students; therefore, you can ask them to explain more times till you understand, and, because they last year had studied this material, they know what helped them to understand the material, thus, can share their tips and tricks. Since we have the opportunity to have our buddy of year 2, there is always somebody to whom you can go with help - they can help with explaining specific things in a native language or in informal English. Also, we are a close community, and different activities let us meet more people with whom to find solutions together or to who go for help. As well as, we can find students who are from the same country or at least speak the same language, and ask them to explain the topics in other languages too. When I didn’t understand something, I would ask my course mates, year 2 students after seminars, or write an email to the professor - we all are people who understand how difficult some topics can be.

Moreover, we have courses which help us to improve language use: for example, courses which include reading and analyzing, as well as, English course, where, no matter how good is your background, you will study punctuation, formal writing, and paraphrasing. All courses in SSE Riga don't ask for some specific knowledge about economics or math, but since we all have different backgrounds, every course provides necessary information starting from basics.

Conclusion – of course, it is necessary to have some knowledge in English and to be able to speak; however, nowadays we have so many things in English (including Instagram, TikTok, and other social networking sites, as well as games and gaming platforms) that it is really hard not to know anything. The knowledge I get from school was enough to understand what is going on. Here many people don’t think of themselves as perfect English speakers, but when the only study language is English - it is impossible to avoid increasing progress.

All-day English – how is it for a Latvian?

Written by Aiva

Hello! I’m Aiva - a First Year student at Stockholm School of Economics in Riga (SSE Riga), and I’m from Latvia. As you are reading this, you might already be familiar with the fact that studies here at SSE Riga are fully English. If you are interested in how it feels or if you have some concerns or doubts about it, dive right into this blog post to find out some valuable insights about me as a non-native English speaker studying in English.

To begin with, of course, there are a lot of challenges. But “challenge” is a positive word, right? If you want to think about it a bit, here is a great quote from Morten Hansen, our Statistics, Microeconomics and Macroeconomics lecturer: “It is wonderful when things get complicated.” 

Going back to specific challenges, I must admit that I was quite concerned about how it will go. Being good (however, not even close to excellent) at English, I thought of studying in English as a challenge for myself. And yes, at first it wasn’t easy and natural. Yes, it isn’t easy-peasy now. But it is definitely worth it! 

As a student at SSE Riga, I spend five days a week - to be fair, it probably is five and a half or six days a week - listening to lecturers talking in English, reading course material in English, and solving tasks in English. It is very intensive, but this way I am learning faster, gaining a lot of knowledge in a short period of time, and strengthening this new knowledge. I have been doing this for some four months now, and it has become my everyday life. 

I can easily say that the improvement I expected has taken place. There is a saying in Latvian that could describe my overall feelings about studying in English as of now: “To feel like a fish in the water.”  No doubt that there are still many things I do not know and many possible ways of how I could progress, but, thanks to my studies, I am feeling more and more skilled and confident to write, talk and read in English. With this, I don’t want to say that I could do everything in English and that I have become some English language superhero because of studies, no, nothing like that. It’s just that I feel completely okay in this kind of environment - this English language environment.

The thing that I can say for sure is that spending this much time surrounded by English, it just is different. Now I sometimes wonder how unusual it would be if I actually studied in Latvian…in Latvia. Isn’t it surprising - to think like that!?!

What is interesting, I often realize that I’m also thinking in English. It happens when I have to decide on something or when I am thinking about my feelings and emotions. Sometimes it makes sense for me to think in English because I feel that I can express and understand my mood and emotional state better. Maybe it is the fact that the English language simply has more words than the Latvian language, or maybe it is instinctive to do that because of spending so much time in this English atmosphere.

It has nothing to do with economics and studies as a learning process itself, but the use of English has become so frequent that I find English to be appropriate also for conversations with myself. It might sound weird, it might not, but what I want to say is that this experience is something out of the ordinary. As time goes, the idea of it sinks in and even if I start to feel familiar with this, it is never boring. 

To conclude, I can say that even though studying in English feels natural now, I still look at it with a glimpse of the excitement and see many possibilities of improvement that would undeniably be useful in my future. Challenges are still there, but that’s what moves me forward!

And a small suggestion to you, dear reader: don’t be afraid of challenges! Let it be studying in English, let it be anything else, believe in your abilities and I wish you good luck!

Debunked stereotypes about SSE Riga students

Written by Evelina Daniela

Starting university can be a scary experience for anyone. Especially when it’s at one of the top schools in your country. And so many stereotypes about the students are in the air and you don’t know what to think.

I felt the same way. When I was applying and when I was starting my studies. I want to ease the minds of prospective students by sharing some of the stereotypes I had before. And explain why they are in fact not true.

SSE Riga accepts students only from state gymnasiums

I had heard this one so many times that I lost count. I didn’t know many students from SSE Riga, so the people I talked to about the school had no real connection with it. But many of them said that SSE Riga is such a prestigious school, that it only accepts gymnasium students.

This didn’t concern me personally, as I was studying at Riga State Gymnasium No.2. Yet it still seemed strange – how can there be such separation judging by what high school you go to?

Obviously, this was not true. I think it’s just something that people say because they know a friend of a friend of a friend who went to a gymnasium and ended up studying at SSE Riga. I myself have actually made some pretty good friends already, most of them not even being from Riga and instead of coming from smaller Latvian cities.

Students at SSE Riga are conceited and full of themselves

This is another misconception that I heard from multiple people. And this was the one that scared me the most. I thought – if the school is filled with the brightest minds, they’re all probably stuck up and judgmental.

I mean, when you think about it, it’s a private and international university. Students are bound to think that they are so much better than everyone else, right?

Wrong.

Well, but it’s quite expensive in comparison to the other universities in Latvia, so most students HAVE to be stuck-up rich kids…

Also wrong.

It was definitely a bad mindset to have when starting studies, I admit that, but that was what I was thinking at first. Thankfully, I was pleasantly surprised by everyone here. The students at SSE Riga are actually some of the nicest people I’ve ever met, and I’ve only been here for three months.

What I mean by “the nicest people I’ve ever met” is that my peers are very forthcoming. Missed something a lecturer said? Ask someone, they’ll tell you. Don’t understand a topic? Someone who understands it will be more than willing to explain it to you. Talked to someone once during an event? They’ll say “hi” every time you see them on the SSE Riga premises – something that never happened to me in high school.

SSE Riga students don’t have any free time – it’s all just studying

Well, yes and no. Studies can be overwhelming at times, there’s no doubt in that. But that also brings up the question of do you actually have a lot to do or are you just procrastinating and have poor time management?

Life at SSE Riga isn’t all studies and no fun. The Student Association regularly organizes different events and parties for students to unwind from the stress of assignments and exams, as their motto is “Study hard, party hard(er)”. But some students can succumb to the “party” part and end up with missed assignments, failed courses and no time for anything besides studying. Perhaps this is exactly where the stereotype comes from, but you shouldn’t trust a bad sample.

However, if you can manage your time well, like, for example, just squeezing in some extra reading before heading out to party with course mates on a Friday night, there shouldn’t be anything to worry about.

If you don’t enjoy partying, that’s not a problem. The school has many organizations for students to take part in and enjoy their talents or hobbies. We have a choir, the Debate Club, Je Joue, Student Association and many others where you can put your various skills to use. From what I’ve seen so far, nearly every single student is in at least one organization, and many of them actually have hobbies outside of school. For example, I can’t even begin to count all of the students who are dancers or play musical instruments.

Stereotypes can be a bit nasty sometimes, and it’s definitely not good to take them as fact. The kind that I mentioned above can really be unnerving and maybe even scare some prospective students away because they fear studying in a negative community. I wish someone had told me last year that I had nothing to fear, so I hope the insights I shared from my own experience have brought peace to at least one high schooler’s mind.

Scholarships - yes, you can get them!

Written by Daria

It is not a secret that post-soviet countries have a myriad of paradigms, and higher education attainment is not an exception. With my firm decision to study abroad, I encountered many questions from puzzled relatives and acquaintances about my unwavering choice.

Many people wondered why I would decide to pay for higher education if, given my academic achievements, I could easily study at the top university in Ukraine for free. And funnily enough, the fact that I received a partial scholarship from SSE Riga that covered part of my tuition was not an argument.

I could easily study at the top university in Ukraine for free, so why would I go abroad and pay, at least partially, for my tuition?

The superior quality of the curriculum, ranking, its different approach to the study process, international staff, and student body are undeniable attributes of SSE Riga. However, my final choice was driven by the opportunities the School provided, including an abundance of student organisations as well as additional scholarships.

“All our efforts are recognized and rewarded - and that is what I appreciate the most!” is a phrase that I often share. And if you are willing to use all the opportunities available, as I was, you have high chances to receive both monetary and non-monetary benefits.

Having come to SSE Riga with a mindset to seize the opportunities, I managed to receive two more scholarships in addition to the incredible experience and self-development. Yes, it is not a mistake - two more scholarships.

Merit-based scholarship

The first one is a merit-based scholarship that is given for excellent academic standing, active student involvement, and personal growth. And I am profoundly grateful to the SSE Riga Alumni Association for motivating me and other scholarship recipients to strive for knowledge and self-development.

Ambassadors Scholarship

The second scholarship comes from the Ambassadors Program, the beauty of which is that ambassadors are recognised for promoting the School locally or internationally. And we are also given creative freedom since you can freely choose how to contribute beyond the minimum requirement.

Overall, either you seek personal development or financial support, SSE Riga provides multiple opportunities for its students. And after all, given the established beliefs, education abroad can be comparable to education in my home country, though with a much richer set of benefits

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First off, you will have to work hard and you will have to spend long hours at the School, but that's the beauty of it! You get to spend so much time with your friends, laugh about your life choices (studies elsewhere would have been easier), but at the end of the day - SSE Riga offers the best student organizations and parties.

— Adrija Voicisa
Latvia, Class of 2020

I am amazed by the great SSE Riga lecturers, engaging guest lectures, the reasonable overlap between courses and a well-connected community. I can say that SSE Riga opened my eyes to see what the finance world looks like.

— Ahmad Jahid Sakhi
Afghanistan, Class of 2023

I once sent an email to the Rector around midnight (it felt super urgent at the moment) and he responded after five minutes! It showed me that one can be the most important person in the SSE Riga universe and still be very approachable by students, which is quite amazing.⁣

— Marta Metuzāle
Latvia, Class of 2020

I’d like to stress the importance of joining student organizations! The Student Association truly has the capability to enrich and saturate your student life like nothing else. Use all opportunities to develop your own skills and competencies through the many activities offered, such as organising huge events, managing an actual portfolio of investments or being a graphic designer or editor for the school’s magazine.

— Lauris Zalva
Latvia, Class of 2021