Arrival Day kicks off the new semester

The spring semester in Lund kicks-off with a new Arrival Day for 500+ exchange students. We took the opportunity to meet a few of these news students. All a bit jet-lagged but mostly excited about all the opportunities to explore a new part of the world and many new friendships.

Name: Liam
From: Canada
Studies: Mechanical Engineering
Why did you choose Lund University?
I have Swedish heritage, so I wanted to explore the country.
What are you looking forward to right now?
Travelling, I’m planning to also visit Norway, Belgium and Ireland.

Name: Emily
From: Canada
Studies: Political science
Why did you choose Lund University?
I want to experience Swedish culture. I like the lifestyle and I’m interested in the sustainability perspective.
What are you looking forward to right now?
I’m looking forward to meeting new friends from all over the world.

Name: Jessica
From: Canada
Studies: Economics
Why did you choose Lund University?
Because of the Swedish, and Nordic, lifestyle. It seems kind and advanced.
What are you looking forward to right now?
Meeting other international students and travelling around Europe.

Name: Fanny
From: Austria
Studies: International Business
Why did you choose Lund University?
I have always wanted to come here. When I was an au pair in France I had Swedish friends, so it’s a trip I always wanted to do. I also want to take the opportunity to explore the rest of Sweden, Finland and Norway.
What are you looking forward to right now?
To meet new people from different countries!

Name: Antonia
From: Austria
Studies: International Business
Why did you choose Lund University?
I recently visited Sweden for the first time and I liked it a lot. I researched study opportunities in Sweden and found that Lund University was the best choice for me. It is very good university and I also like the closeness to Copenhagen, that it is possible to be close to a bigger city while I’m here.
What are you looking forward to right now?
I’m looking forward to see how school here differs from Austria and experience the teachers’ approach to my field of study.

University happenings/Updates 0

Happy winter holidays!

We at the Lund University Alumni office would like to wish everyone a really happy winter holiday! We are taking a few days off for vacation and will be back in business again on 8 January. 

The plans for 2019 are not yet set in stone, but here are a few things to look forward to:

  • The joint alumni event at the House of Sweden in Washington D.C. on 12 February
  • The Love@Lund exhibition on Valentine’s Day 14 February in Lund
  • Don’t forget to save the date for the Alumni Weekend 5 October! The gala dinner will once again be held at Grand Hotel in Lund. 

and more…

Updates 2

LU Alumni around the world: Bangkok

This week we meet Sarulchana (Pam) Viriyataveekul, alumna who was an exchange student during the academic year 2014/2015. Sarulchana studied courses in Swedish, Swedish social policy, Economics and the Scandinavian Model of Equality – Gender, Class, Ethnicity and the Welfare state. Sarulchana currently works as a Research Assistant at the World Bank in Bangkok, Thailand.

“A photo taken from one of the meetings where I attended as a World Bank representative”

Q: Why did you decide to study at Lund University?

The journey that led me to Lund University was driven by my fascination with the Swedish way of life and its’ welfare system, as I grew up watching documentaries and news about them. I wanted to get a taste of what the “happy” life is like in a welfare state, and learn how its’ elements can be applied in my country. Luckily, my university offered several exchange programmes with universities in Sweden, Lund University among them. The choice to study at one of the world’s top 100 universities was clear, especially as it is in the top 30 for development studies. I knew immediately that studying and living in a city where bright young minds gather would be one of the most memorable years of my life. And it turned out to be true!

Work with a view

Q: Currently, you work as a research assistant at the World Bank in Thailand. What does a typical work day look like for you?

My work days are rarely typical since I work for task team leaders in different units at the World Bank, and also at the Center for Research on Inequality and Social Policy (CRISP), Thammasat University. Both offices give me flexibility to design my work schedule. If I am not working from a café, I am either at one of the offices or attending meetings for my World Bank Task Team Leaders. Each day is unique, but below follows what a day at my work can look like.

Today, I started at 8 a.m. On my way to my first stop, I read online newspapers to check for news about inequality trends worldwide. Once I arrived at the research center, we had our weekly 9 a.m. meeting to lay out the plan for our first Newsletter. From the research center I traveled to The World Bank Office for another weekly update meeting with the Senior Human Development Specialist, where I was assigned new tasks for the whole week. By 11.30 a.m. I was back at my desk performing desktop research.

At around 2 p.m. I took my lunch break at a food court in the mall nearby. Sometimes I buy take away food to eat at the kitchen, so I can enjoy the stunning Skyline view while eating. By 3 p.m., I had switched to doing work for the Social Development unit, coordinating with a private sector partner to plan a Brown Bag Lunch session on ‘LGBTI Friendly Workplace’, a topic I am excited about. Once the sun was starting to set it was time for me to pack up my stuff and head home.

Q: Has your Lund University education been beneficial in your work? In what ways?

My Lund university education has been beneficial both directly and indirectly. In one of the research works on the welfare card scheme in Thailand, I was tasked with writing a literature review on the challenges and effectiveness of poverty targeting programmes in different countries. Having studied Swedish Social Policy, it is easier for me to grasp the concept of welfare systems in general. In my work at the World Bank, the knowledge I gained from the Scandinavian Model of Equality class equipped me with a gender and rights-based lens to apply to gender related projects.

Most importantly, the international environment in Lund prepared me well for the culturally vibrant working environment in my professional life. The soft skills honed from networking with classmates and new friends from diverse backgrounds helped me become more open and understanding, and allowed me to communicate more effectively with foreign colleagues as well as clients.

“A photo from my student time in Lund, here together with my corridor mates”

Q: I see that you have worked at the Thai-Swedish Chamber of Commerce. During your time there, what were your biggest learning outcomes?

I learned that this year marked 150 years of relations and commerce between Thailand and Sweden. During some of those years, the Thai-Swedish Chamber of Commerce (TSCC) has played an integral role in the enhancement of Swedish businesses in Thailand. When I worked for TSCC there were more than 120 members, most of which are Swedish companies such as ABB, Saab and Tetra Pak. Many of our member companies directly contribute to the progress of Thailand 4.0, an economic model which propels growth through innovation and technology. Not only do Swedish companies help transform the Thai economy, they also introduce Swedish values to the society. IKEA Thailand recently began granting four weeks of paid paternity leave to its’ employees, setting a great precedent for Thailand, which currently only grants paternity leave for state officials.

There were many interesting projects over the years; such as seminars and networking events on anti-corruption, corporate social responsibility, and digital economy with high-level speakers from the government and business sector. The project I found most exciting to work on was the upcoming ‘Swedish Education and Career Days 2018’, in collaboration with the Embassy of Sweden in Bangkok. At the Chamber, we were a small team consisting of four people, but we were planning the biggest international education event in Bangkok with over 20,000 visitors, together with organising alumni networking, and roadshows at Thai universities to connect Thai students and young professionals with world leading Swedish companies and universities (Lund University included!). The planning involved collaboration with various stakeholders, which spans across multiple sectors and nationalities. 

Lucia celebration at the Thai-Swedish Chamber of Commerce

Q: What is the most unexpected thing you learned at Lund University?

Being in a foreign country, pretty much everything was unexpected. For me, the most surprising thing was the Student Nations. I was overwhelmed by the options presented to me (it felt like Lund was the Swedish version of Hogwarts!). During the second semester, I volunteered at Kristianstads Nation several times, rotating my responsibilities from selling entrance tickets, preparing food, making drinks, to cleaning. After each time, volunteers were invited to attend a ‘Tacksittning’ (‘Thank-you-sittning’). Never before had I attended a dinner party where one has to dress up according to a theme AND sing (in Swedish) before each course. Even though I did not know the meanings of the songs most of the time, I still had fun trying to mouth the words and dancing to Håkan Hellström’s or Eurovision songs with the new friends I made at the end of the night.

Inspiring alumni/LU Alumni around the World/Q&A with alumni 0

“Sweden, Italy, Europe: together for the future”

On 15 November the President of Italy, His Excellency Sergio Mattarella, visited Lund University. The event was also attended by his daughter, Laura Mattarella, and the Swedish King and Queen, His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf and Her Majesty Queen Silvia. The visit to Lund and to Lund University marked the final day of the Italian President’s three-day official visit to Sweden.

Her Majesty, Queen Silvia of Sweden
Photographer: Hassan Taher

Upon their arrival in Lund, the guests were shown around the European Spallation Source (ESS) research facility, which is in the northern part of Lund. Italy is one of the 13 member nations of the European Spallation Source ERIC and has contributed and invested in ESS. After the visit, Lund University welcomed His Excellency, his daughter, and the King and Queen of Sweden to the Main University Building, where the auditorium was full of eager students awaiting what the President had to say on the topic of “Sweden, Italy, Europe: together for the future”.

The beautiful interior of the auditorium in the Main University Building
Photographer: Hassan Taher

The speech touched upon many important subjects, such as the history of Europe, the importance of the European Union and the importance of higher education, in the form of universities. Mattarella began his speech by giving thanks to the Swedish Royal Family, for welcoming him, his daughter and the whole Italian delegation so warmly. He continued by speaking about the history of Europe, from the First World War to the Second, which ultimately led to the creation of the European Union.“The idea that we should promote unity to grow together, beginning on resources such as coal and steel, which had before been reasons for war”.

His Excellency, President of Italy, Sergio Mattarella
Photographer: Hassan Taher

Mattarella spoke about the contribution of the Kingdom of Sweden to the European Union and in fostering knowledge through academic and research-based institutions, such as Lund University. The role of the European Union, Mattarella said, is not to be a mere customs union, nor a business committee, but rather an economic power which should guard the free movement of people. To protect the citizens always and everywhere. To be an active part of the society of our lives, from equal pay for equal jobs in the labour market to the role of universities.

Vice-Chancellor of Lund University, Torbjörn von Schantz
Photographer: Hassan Taher

The President encouraged the students in the auditorium, the Erasmus generation, to embrace academia. To continue to travel, to study, to learn more about other peoples’ cultures, languages and dreams. “Dear sons and daughters of Dante, Goethe and Strindberg, the notion of time and space have changed radically”, Mattarella said, “we should embrace the knowledge we learn and use it to make the world a better place, for the world, ourselves and the generations after”.

The Main University Building
Photographer: Hassan Taher


University happenings/Updates 0

Voices from the Alumni Reception in Berlin

Name: Kerstin
Studies: Master of Arts in Literature, Culture and Media (class of 2011)
Works with: General Personnel and Organisational issues at the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin

Favourite memory from Lund University: 
The close contact with professors and meeting students and people from other fields than my own.




Name: Maksim
Studies: Master of Science in Finance (class of 2018)
Works with: Project Management Intern at EBay in Berlin

Favourite spot in Berlin: Victoria Park in Kreuzberg. The park is situated on a hill, with fountains and beautiful scenery. It is particularly beautiful in the summer-time, when many people gather there to relax, spend time and chat with one another.



Name: Anne
Studies: Master of Arts in European Studies (class of 2015)
Works with: Inhouse recruitment specialist at Adesso

Favourite memory from Lund University: The people I met, definitely. I am still friends with many people, both from my programme and my student engagement at different nations.

Name: Josefin
Studies: Master of Arts in European Studies (class of 2015)
Works with: Copy Writer at Zalando at the Nordic office in Berlin

What do you think you will be doing in five years?: I honestly do not know. But I think this is part of the excitement, to be somewhere where I can not even imagine today.


Name: Sebastian
Studies: Master of Science in Environmental Management and Policy (class of 2012)
Works with: Guest researcher at Adelphi

Favourite spot in Berlin: A place called Heiliger See (English: Holy Lake). A place for contemplation, to enjoy the serenity of nature, to have a picnic while watching the sunset.




Name: James
Studies: Master of Science in Plant Science (class of 2018)
Works with: PhD studies in Urban Ecology at Freie Universität Berlin, conducting research on fungi in the city

Favourite memory from Lund University: Being responsible for the only international spex in Lund, at Kalmar nation.



Alumni Events/Inspiring alumni/Q&A with alumni/Updates 0

LU meets alumni in Berlin

On 7 November we hosted an alumni reception in the Felleshus, the cultural centre and event venue of the five Nordic embassies, in Berlin. Many alumni gathered after work for a fruitful evening of mingling and networking. Alumni enjoyed an inspiring talk by Ambassador Per Thöresson about the relations between Sweden and Germany. The relationship between our two countries has never been as good as it is today, according to the Ambassador. Sweden and Germany are joining forces when it comes to innovation and a sustainable future. As an example,  Sweden takes centre stage as the Hannover Messe 2019 Partner country partner country in March 2019 under the theme Sweden Co-Lab.

At the event, we also listened to alumnus Ole Oberste Berghaus who talked about his engagements in Lund student life and how to stay involved as an active alumn. During the following mingle (with Norwegian treats), we truly enjoyed hearing that so many alumni were interested in staying in touch with Lund University and with each other.

Join the Facebook Group

It was great to hear that there is such an interest in starting a local group! During the event in Berlin, we came to the conclusion that we can get the ball rolling by starting a Facebook group for Berlin-based alumni.

You can join the group here and start inviting fellow LU alumni in the area. It’s an open group where everyone is welcome to add members, posts, photos and events.

Alumni Chapter info

The ambition is that this is now a group you all can use to meet other alumni and plan your own activities. Perhaps after a couple events, and if there is a group of alumni who would like to form a committee, we can create an official chapter in Berlin!

Check out our website here for more information about starting a chapter.

Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or ideas for future alumni activities in Berlin!

Alumni Events/Updates 0

LU Alumni around the world: Berlin

This week we meet Ole Oberste Berghaus, alumnus from the LUMES programme and the School of Economics and Management, class of 2014, who will share his daily life as a management consultant in Berlin.



Q: You have a master’s degree in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science and also studied Economic Growth and Innovation at the School of Economics and Management. What have you been up to since you graduated from Lund University?

After graduation I started working at a boutique consulting company in Nuremberg, Germany. I stayed with the company for two years – until I got successfully headhunted to my current employer. The company is state owned and has its headquarters in Berlin. Today I am responsible for projects with a focus on innovation in public administration. I work with topics such as new technology, cyber security, climate impact assessment and strategy development. My job is aimed at improving administrative processes and structures, as well as increasing sustainability in public administration.

Q: What does a typical work day look like for you today?

Usually I get up shortly after six in the morning and get ready for work. A morning run, a small breakfast, a cup of good coffee and the morning news are a must before the 30 min commute. While on the local train I usually read a book – I like to learn something new every day, I have a thing for non-fiction books and popular science. My workday starts at 8:30-ish at the office with a short chat with my colleagues to prioritize the tasks of the day. Regular and frequent meetings with the customer occur usually during the mornings and last preferably not too long (other than major review meetings). Our lunch breaks are usually spent going to a small restaurant around the corner of our office. Afternoons tend to have a super small coffee break – much shorter than a Swedish “fika”. When in the office we often discuss ideas with each other to make sure that everyone is involved and is heard and that the different viewpoints are included. Since my current employer looks closely on overtime, my colleagues and I can usually finish work at 18:00.

If I skipped the morning run, I tend to go to the gym for a short workout after work. Or I attend political forums, volunteer activities or dinner and drinks with friends – far too seldom I attend opera nights and theatre plays.

Q: How would you describe the business culture within your industry in Germany?

Especially in consulting and public administration the business culture is quite conservative: men are expected to wear a dark suit with an optional tie. Dressing down during Fridays is only accepted when not at the customer’s. Public administration is also known for its hierarchical structure and many operative rules and fixed processes.
As an external consultant you are much freer to jump hierarchies – you are more of a court jester than an actual part of the administration itself – much to my delight.
On the contrary: within our company hierarchies are flat, including an open-door policy and we work on a first name basis; from CEO to administrative staff.

Q: Has your Lund University education been beneficial in your work? In what ways?

Lund University’s education has been very beneficial. Especially the focus areas of human geography, innovation, systems-thinking and sustainability have helped me a whole lot! Furthermore, student life has been a huge benefit for my career: At Lund university I could learn how to manage substantial budgets, large groups of people and how to create an added value with small budgets. The chance to try yourself out is very unique to smaller university towns. Big city life distracts too much and shifts the focus away from true innovation and creative thinking.

Q: What are your plans for (the rest of) 2018? Any new career or personal life goals?

I already got a substantial rise of my salary – I am super happy about that! Career wise I am currently training to take over similar responsibilities I already had at LundaEkonomerna (the student union at LUSEM): managing projects and people. In 2017 I already managed my first smaller project – 2018 and 2019 will bring some larger projects. For personal development I am looking forward to get a lot of trainings and mentoring sessions to reflect on my current work and to learn more and more and more … a life of lifelong learning.


Q: If you have one extra hour of free time a day, how would you use it?

I usually use my additional hours as a member of the supervisory board of AFS Intercultural Programs Germany and as a volunteer for the Junior Chamber International (JCI) chapter work here in Berlin.

Inspiring alumni/LU Alumni around the World 0

LU Alumni around the world: Copenhagen

This week’s LU Alumni around the world, Markéta Urbanová

This week we meet Markéta Urbanová, alumna from the master’s programme in Business Administration with a specialisation in Globalisation, Brands and Consumption (class of 2016), and from the master’s degree programme in Asian studies, with a specialisation in Japan (class of 2018).

Q: Why did you decide to study at Lund University?

After high school in the Czech Republic, I moved to Copenhagen to study my Bachelor’s degree in Marketing Management at Copenhagen Business Academy. When finishing my Bachelor’s degree, I began researching different universities in Europe to find the right Master’s programme for me, which I could not find in Denmark. My classmates told me about Lund University, and when I started researching more, I learned that it was the right match for me. It met all my requirements, including an interesting programme – ‘Globalisation, Brands and Consumption’, being a highly ranked university, and located in Scandinavia with a close proximity to Copenhagen.

Q: You used to work within consumer marketing, and now you are working towards business marketing. What made you decide to change focus?

There was no specific reason why I changed my area, rather it was more about finding a company whose values were in line with my own. I believe that the people you work with have a great influence on whether you enjoy your job or not, as well as the location of the company. I did not want to stay in Lund anymore, which is one of the reasons why I decided to move back to Copenhagen, where I want to settle for the near future. Not only is location important, but also working within a rewarding industry. I want to work at a company that provides goods or services that I believe in and that are exciting. All in all, the values of the company, the people of the company, and the location of the company are essential for me; not whether the job is within BtC or BtB. I think it is a good challenge to change areas and industries now and then since I believe that it can spark my creativity and foster my development within my field, i.e. digital marketing.

Q: During your studies, you both studied and worked, how did you plan your day as a full-time student with work on the side?

I must say, it was not always easy balancing full-time studies and work on the side. I believe it is all about motivation and structure, as well as your priorities. I tend to be quite strict with myself and I am very goal-oriented. I was never much for nations or partying, but more for achieving my academic and career goals. The way for me to achieve my goals was through working and getting more experience from different companies, as well as studying. During the summers, for instance, I was not the type of person to take a two-month long vacation with my family. Instead, I saw the time as an opportunity to learn more by being an intern in different organisations within diplomacy. By having various jobs and internships, I hope I can differentiate myself from others and add value to my skill set, which I think is important, especially when people with similar academic backgrounds compete for the same jobs. But all of that would not be possible without the immense support from my family, friends and colleagues at Sony. Also, running helped a lot to keep me sane.

Q: You have two Master’s degrees from Lund University, one in Business Administration with a specialisation in Globalisation, Brands and Consumption, and one in Asian Studies. Did you know what you wanted to work with when you started studying at Lund University?

When I started my studies at Lund University, I knew what I wanted to work with. This is because of the different internships I had had where I realised that I wanted to work within an international company in the private sector, rather than in a start-up company.

Markéta at her graduation ceremony

Q: In what ways do you think your education from Lund University benefits you in your work?

My education from Lund University focused on analysis, structure and critical thinking, which are important no matter the field in which you work. In terms of the programmes themselves, there are not many links to Asia at DFDS, however, international trade plays a big role within such a business. On the other hand, an online marketing course from my Business degree has proved very helpful. We learned about SEO, content marketing and analytics tools, which I now use on a daily basis.

Q: What do you think you will be doing in 10 years’ time?

That is a difficult question, which I do not like to answer. Even though I am an organised planner, I have realised throughout the years that you cannot plan everything. Life takes you down paths that you did not even think of before. And that can only happen when you explore and do not stand still. So 10 years is quite far into the future if you think of all that you can experience during that time. Personally, I hope to have a family by then. Professionally, I see myself as an experienced professional surrounded by a team of positive and inspiring people. Hopefully I help them in their own development that would, in turn, contribute to the company (maybe my own company, who knows). I also hope to grow into a person who can inspire others. That is probably my life vision. Finally, I will strive for a good work-life balance.

Q: What are your top three tips for current students at Lund University?

  • Be focused. Even if you are unsure of some things or you do not know if what you are doing is the right thing; focus can lead you there. This is the case no matter which discipline you study.
  • Be disciplined. Self-discipline is very challenging but so important. At least trying to be disciplined is something one should strive for.
  • Be reflective. Be critical and reflect on everything you do. Learn from your mistakes.
  • Last, but not least, my bonus tip is to always be fair and kind! I believe this is the prerequisite for our co-existence. 🙂


Inspiring alumni/LU Alumni around the World/Updates 0

LU meets alumni in London

On 4 October we hosted an alumni reception at the Swedish Embassy in London. Many alumni gathered after work for a fruitful evening of mingling and networking. Alumni also enjoyed an inspiring talk by Professor Thomas Kalling, professor of Strategic Management and director of SITE at the School of Economics and Management (LUSEM). In his talk Innovation Research at LUSEM through Industry Collaboration, professor Kalling told us about his work with SITE, a recently formed unit reflecting the School’s commitment to research collaboration with industry within areas connected to organisational and institutional renewal, such as entrepreneurship, innovation, technology management, and strategy.

As it was Kanelbullens dag (Cinnamon Bun Day), we cleaned out a local Swedish bakery and made sure our alumni could enjoy one of Sweden’s most beloved sweet treats.

Join the Facebook Group

It was great to hear that there is such an interest in starting a local group. After our pre-event meeting we had with a few alumni, we came to the conclusion that we can get the ball rolling by starting a Facebook group for London-based alumni.

You can join the group here and start inviting fellow LU alumni in the area. It’s an open group where everyone is welcome to add members, posts, photos and events.

Chapter info

The ambition is that this is now a group you all can use to meet other alumni and plan your own activities. Perhaps after a couple events, and if there is a group of alumni who would like to form a committee, we can create an official chapter in London! Check out our website here for more information about starting a chapter.

Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions or ideas for future alumni activities in London!

Alumni Events/Updates 0

LU Alumni around the world: Gornji Milanovac

This week we meet Iva Cvjeticanin, alumna from the master’s programme in Economic Growth and Spatial Dynamics, class of 2013, sharing her daily life as a Design Hub coordinator at Tetra Pak in the city of Gornji Milanovac, Serbia and as an international alumni leader.

Q: You graduated with a Master’s degree in Economic Growth, Innovation and Spatial Dynamics, class of 2013. Can you tell us a bit more about what you’re working with today?

I am very happy to share my story with other alumni and students! After graduation in 2013 I came back to Serbia and found a job in Tetra Pak in my hometown. When living in Lund I passed by Tetra Pak so many times. My new employment made me so excited because I knew that in this way I am staying attached to Sweden and to Lund. I work in a department called Design Hub Europe and Central Asia. We do technical preparation of designs to be printed in our factories around the world. My role is Design Hub Coordinator and, as I like to say it, I do everything except the designs. As an economist by formal education, I deal with various reports on productivity, cost, daily and monthly realization of job volumes. I also take part in big projects that are implemented globally and support implementation of certain methodologies in our daily work. On my to-do list are also organization of soft skills training for my colleagues and yearly team building activities.

Q: What does your typical work day look like?

I can’t say that there are typical work days for my role. However, it depends on the period of the month. I am usually busiest in the beginning of the month and in the end of the year when I am dealing with all kinds of reports for previous months or quarters.

So, let me tell you a bit my day looks like in the beginning of the month (written with the assumption that during the day there were no interruptions – which is highly unlikely). My official work day starts at 8am and ends at 4pm. I usually come a bit earlier to make coffee with my colleagues, prepare everything, and then we are all ready at 8am to start working. Unless I have a very urgent task, I start my day with reading e-mails and setting priorities for that day. At 9am we have a regular morning meeting where we analyze the performance of the previous day and discuss hot topics. Then, until lunch I have an undisrupted time that I use for data collections from different sources and platforms. Around noon, together with my colleagues, I go for a lunch where we try not to talk about work topics. We try to use this time to relax, tell funny stories and vacation adventures etc. When I’m back in the office I usually have (at least) one more meeting regarding an ongoing project and before I go home I use the data I obtained to start creating the reports.

“Last year team building with my work”

Q: Has your Lund University education been beneficial in your work? In what ways?

I would say that my education together with living in Sweden was an invaluable experience that helped me in many ways in my further career and I, would dare to say, my everyday life. First, education at Lund University helped me develop critical thinking. Now, I have a habit of questioning conventional thinking as well as questioning “doing things a certain way because we’ve been always doing them like that”. That is not good enough and calls for a change. In addition, the independent research we were conducting enabled me to manage a great number of different data in a limited time and make good analysis of it. Also, Lund University encouraged brainstorming and group problem solving sessions, which is a very useful skill when you work in a big team.

Also, living in an international environment makes you very open, tolerant and understanding to other cultures and any kind of diversities. This is especially important when working in an international company and cooperating with people from many different countries.

Q: You recently visited Stockholm for the Swedish Institute Alumni Leaders Meeting with alumni who have studied in Sweden, from all around the world. We are keen to hear about your experiences; what are your top 3 takeaways from the meeting?

Yes, I have attended the Swedish Institute Alumni Leaders Meeting and I am very grateful to the Swedish Institute for giving me this opportunity! I was representing Swedish Alumni Network Western Balkans (SANWB) which is a regional network for alumni from Balkan area. The organization was flawless and we fully enjoyed a very fruitful few days! Let me summarize my experience in 3 important points.

First, it was so inspiring to meet the alumni from all over the world! We were around 26 alumni from 24 different countries. During the days we spent together we shared experiences, brainstormed, made future plans and helped each other out with advice. It was a great feeling to see that no matter how different we seem from the outside, we have many things in common. We are all devoted to our alumni networks and we are trying to keep the Swedish spirit alive in our own countries (e.g. the majority of networks organize Kanelbullens dag in their countries in October). We all came back from Sweden with tremendous amount of memories and now we are making efforts to share all good things and habits we learned in Sweden.

Network for Future Global Leaders – Alumni conference in Stockholm 2018

Second, we had an opportunity to meet students and attend the diploma ceremony at the City Hall. It was very exciting to see all these students proud of themselves for finishing such an important chapter of their lives. They came to talk to us, asking numerous questions of what they can expect next, how does a life after Sweden look like, how to fit in the life of their home countries, how to live without “fika”… For us, it was like a travel in a time capsule. We were all remembering the time when we were in their shoes – happy, confused and optimistic about the future.

Third, I had to point out this lucky occasion, and I guess everybody who lived in Sweden will understand – the amazing weather we had in Stockholm! I landed on 27 degrees at 8pm in Stockholm and there are not enough words to express my happiness. 😊 During our stay we had an abundance of sunshine and I believe we all fell in love in Stockholm (again).

Q: If you could plan an ultimate vacation, where would you go?

There are many places on my travel bucket list, but if it were an ultimate vacation you would probably find me trekking through Latin America. 😊

“My dog and I during our winter walks”

Inspiring alumni/LU Alumni around the World 0