I don’t judge. I am the first one to crack a joke about “white people problems”. I am just getting tired of it even if I am not white. But what « white people » means anyway. Not much if you think about it. It is used to describe low-class people wearing a bikini in Wall-mart or privileged folks refusing to let an officer of police do his job and won’t get beaten for it. The expression is used for so many different situations that it got lost in translations somewhere between the “Fat Jewish”, Trevor Noah, Kanye and Trump. Lire la suite

Publicités

How long the “white people” rhetoric is meant to last?

The race for an equal labour market

By Emma AHL

The difference between Scandinavians may be hard to identify, at least for people outside those cold viking lands. The first time discovering that they are not the same country might be during the winter Olympics where their secret hate for each other comes to the surface. But even if the difference seems small there are some, for example when it comes to unemployment and equality, two connected subjects.

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ÖREBRO UNIVERSITY: THE ART OF CARING

The University of Örebro wants you… but why?

Established in 1999, Örebro University (ÖRU) is a young institution in the Swedish higher education scenery. The university is recently gaining recognition, despite its youth, and its secret might be in paying more attention to its students’ well-being. The university cannot rely on a history, which built other traditional universities’ reputations. Therefore, the university focuses on making a difference in the quality of the students’ university life as a key part of their academic experience.

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What Have I Learned From My Job Interviews?

Job interviews create mixed feelings.

  1. “Yeah! I have an interview. Who’s the best? Who? Who? Me!” Just confess that you are really excited that your resume drew attention.
  1. “Oh no, what am I going to say? I hate it! It’s 2% preparation and 98% feeling. Should I prepare seriously and learn all their website by heart or should I just go with the flow and see if they like me? If they don’t, their loss!”

After your ambivalent feelings, you start building a strategy. Lire la suite

ÖREBRO UNIVERSITY: THE ART OF CARING

The University of Örebro wants you… but why?

Established in 1999, Örebro University (ÖRU) is a young institution in the Swedish higher education scenery. The university is recently gaining recognition, despite its youth, and its secret might be in paying more attention to its students’ well-being. The university cannot rely on a history, which built other traditional universities’ reputations. Therefore, the university focuses on making a difference in the quality of the students’ university life as a key part of their academic experience.

When interviewing students who are just starting their studies, they agree on having no expectations prior to coming to study at ÖRU. When you ask students why they choose ÖRU, their reasons might seem different on the surface. However, it never really stems from a speci c attraction to the university or the town of Örebro itself. For every one of them, it all starts with a scrolling list of university names on the Swedish admission website. It just pops up and becomes an option to consider. The majority of the students interviewed will tell you that ÖRU was the rst one to answer positively to their application.

This quick response and reactivity might be an asset when getting students to choose ÖRU and leave aside other applications.

Quickly after a few weeks of classes, students seem to feel different about the university: “It is so much better than I expected! The university is fresh, modern and has made an effort to welcome us new students with good information, gifts, and so on.” shares Ludvig, Swedish psychology student; or “I went from not really having an opinion to being pleasantly surprised. It’s been very easy for me to acclimate to this new city, both academically and socially, and I look forward to whatever it holds in store for me in the future!” adds Shinwar, Swedish medical student.

Students are welcomed with gift bags, survival kits from IKEA and group activities. But… What else? 

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The easy online process when applying to Swedish universities is helpful and open new horizons for international students. Especially if they are not part of the European Union and consequently have to deal with Visa permits. In most cases, ÖRU did not ask for recommendation or cover letters, which light up the process for master applicants. ÖRU also wishes to attract more international students by increasing its teaching in English. But this lack of interest in academic requirements could also be a risk for the learning and teaching.

The campus doesn’t leave students indifferent because it is modern and adapted to a lively student life. You have restaurants and coffee shops in almost every building. The design and the large number of cosy study areas “give the impression that we are in a very nice hotel lobby” comments Anne, a German international Master student. Besides, the teaching style is innovative even for Swedish students: “The group based problem solving and work ethic that are applied to studies of medicine is quite unique because it is not a teaching method widely used at other universities.” explains Shinwar.

Sandra Eriksson, from the International Of ce, tells us that the university’s primary goal is to bring together all the students and give them opportunities to interact regardless of their subject of studies. “We put a lot of effort into making sure international students enjoy their time here as students but also as individuals. The international of ce has two full-time employees dedicated to welcoming the students and making sure they feel part of our community.” Sandra deals daily with practical issues and it goes from stolen laundry, burnt light bulbs, bank accounts or homesickness. Sandra is aware that ÖRU doesn’t have the same aura as more traditional or well-known universities in Sweden. However, the university has a good reputation inside the Erasmus program because previous students speak highly of their experience.

Sweden’s attractiveness on the international stage helps ÖRU in a positive way. The Swedish Institute is an important actor because it grants scholarships to international students. Loureen, from Kisumu in Kenya, is studying immunology, and she stresses how essential this scholarship is for her to be able to pursue her higher education abroad. She adds that the Swedish Institute helps her during all the administrative processes and they make sure that she gets all the information and assistance before and during her studies.

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The scholarship granted by the Swedish Institute has made it possible for Loureen to study abroad

Additionally, the city of Örebro has a population of 115.000 inhabitants from 165 different countries. That is almost as many nationalities as in the cosmopolitan cities of Brussels or Amsterdam, which are home to 180 nationalities. Students from all over the world will nd their local products from home quite easily in town. They will be able to share their cuisine with their classmates. For international students, this environment makes integration and cultural adjustment smoother and adds to their well-being.

#JMFS – Rooms and people

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By me. Kenya – 2010 

THE FATTEST PERSON IN THE ROOM or in other words…

THE ELEPHANT STUCK IN THE MIDDLE 

When I enter a room with people I don’t like:

  • First, I have to act like I am not the fattest person in the room. That way, I will feel a little better. Just kidding! Just look at how everyone is staring…
  • Second, I have to find a seat that will be supportive in every freaking aspects.
  • Third, I check my clothes for any stain of coffee/cake or some extra pounds trying to uncover in order to be seen.
  • Fourth, when I am asked what to drink, I just accept water because…
  • Dying in silence until the end.

When I arrive at my friend’s place:

  • I lay down on the couch and feel like the princess that I really am.
  • I ask for drinks and snacks and I am pleased with both.
  • And then, I have the best time ever laughing and watching TV.

Only enter the room you feel welcomed in! Cheers!

I love elephants! They are beautiful! (I secretly wish I could be an elephant… Or maybe just a baby elephant… Or maybe, a giraffe… Or I know, I know, a blue whale! Blue whales rock.)