Diversity Abroad – Blog

Why I am excited to go to Copenhagen

Hi, I’m Estrella, and I’m headed to Denmark!

Denmark is my choice for study abroad because I have been an environmentalist since 5th grade, and have had a desire to be a master builder since the age of three. Danish modern and traditional design have had a big impact on architecture and interiors globally and by studying it closely the minute details will enhance my current understanding of architecture’s past, present, and future. Denmark’s landmark decision to become carbon neutral by 2050 is inspiring. The country has been progressive about their environmental choices since the 70’s and that is evident in their design decisions, including many sustainable and zero energy buildings. Studying with this program will combine my interests in Scandinavian culture, support my interior design major, and, in my free time, allow me the opportunity to visit some of the many forest kindergartens in Denmark. I have been researching these popular outdoor schools for the past year, imagining ways to combine exploratory outdoor education with the interiors of schools. The culture of education and the childhood experience in Scandinavia affords autonomy and allows for discovery, in comparison to the modern American childhood with which I am accustomed.

The Danish Institute for Study Abroad (DIS) offers a seven-week interior design program based in Copenhagen. DIS, is the only interior architecture program for international students in Denmark. It would be a privilege to have the opportunity to study design with the distinguished professors. These professors, many from highly renowned design schools and active professionals in their fields, lead projects of in-depth research and analysis of specific Danish buildings and guide the construction of a scaled model. The DIS program will fulfill six credits that are required to complete my degree. The scheduled trips to historical and contemporary sites in Copenhagen, Western Denmark, and Norway will advance my architectural studies by providing real world comparisons between Scandinavian architects and my knowledge of American architecture. These experiences will provide a background for understanding the design context that I am immersed in and want to change here in the U.S. From a young age I have been interested in the vernacular architecture of Scandinavia and am excited by the opportunity to see a real thatched roof and traditional timber framing. In a month and a half and I’ll be there soaking it all up!