Francisca Leonardo – Master’s in Molecular Techniques in Life Science

Francisca is an international student and digital ambassador at Karolinska Institutet (KI). Do you have questions about student life at KI? Send her an email or read her blog.

Programme: Master’s Programme in Molecular Techniques in Life Science  

From: Canada  

Contact me in: English, French, Portuguese, Spanish, lite Svenska  


Read Francisca's blog

Photo: Iida Tynkkynen

I decided to come to Karolinska Institutet based on a high recommendation from a friend who had previously studied here and only had good things to say about this university. It was a sign that KI is not only an excellent environment for academic research, but it also provides a tightly-knit and vibrant community for its students, which is especially appreciated if you come from a faraway land like Canada.

Since arriving at KI, I have had the opportunity to learn from top researchers in my field of interest and to get involved in cutting-edge research at SciLifeLab. I have met many strangers who turned into friends along the way. The lovely people I found here made Sweden feel a little bit more like home.

In terms of my future, even though I’m constantly struggling to live more in the present, I can’t help but think that, if I had to guess, I hope that in 10 years I will be retiring from my first career (go FIRE go) and I’m either the CEO of my own biotech start-up or I’m working at NASA. Or something else altogether. Either way, I will probably be happy with my choices since I always follow whatever crazy dream I’m living for at the moment.

In my free time, I like to play tennis, get involved in the community, and read about anything and everything. Most importantly, I appreciate Swedish music like no other person healthily ever should, and a fun fact about me is that I listen to at least one ABBA song every morning to start my day off right!

Finally, my official motto in life is “why the *heck* not?” as an answer (or is it more a question?) when I’m at a crossroads. So I would ask you the same if you are questioning whether you should apply to KI or not – why the heck not?