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Alumni Spotlight

Erik Olsson
Sweden Year 2003-04
Information & Computer Science Major

Sweden

"I've always been involved in theater (acting, directing, lighting design, etc) and I wanted to make sure that I got involved in some group at Lund."

"In 2011, I finally got the opportunity to work at a great Swedish company doing what I was trained to do as an ICS major. I am now living and working in Stockholm and I've never been happier!"

"Don't even think about not studying abroad!"

Why did you choose your particular study abroad program/location?
I was born in Sweden, but hadn't lived there in 10 years. This was my chance to go back "home" for a year and experience how the education system in Sweden works. When I moved from Sweden I was 10 years old and my literacy in the language was at an age-appropriate level. One of my main goals while abroad was to gain a college-level proficiency in Swedish by taking the most advanced Swedish language classes that were offered. It all culminated in passing the TISUS certfication exam, which certified me as having college-level proficieny of Swedish.
 
What types of activities were you involved in while abroad that were meaningful for your learning?
I've always been involved in theater (acting, directing, lighting design, etc) and I wanted to make sure that I got involved in some group at Lund. I discovered the club "Lunds nya studentteater" (Lund's New Student Theater) and was cast in two plays and did the lighting design for another. This is where I met most of my friends that I still connect with today.
 
What are you doing now as a result of studying abroad?
I had never been so sad to leave Sweden as when I left Lund in June 2004. I became determined to complete my degree and return to Sweden as soon as possible. In 2011, I finally got the opportunity to work at a great Swedish company doing what I was trained to do as an ICS major. I am now living and working in Stockholm and I've never been happier!
 
What advice would you give to a student considering studying abroad?
Don't even think about not studying abroad! Finishing your degree is 4 years should be the very least of your worries. Take language classes, take history classes, learn about the country you're in — this is what's important!

Study Abroad Center
University of California, Irvine • Irvine, CA 92697
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