Semester in Sweden

Program Overview

This program runs Spring of odd years. Participation is limited so early application is recommended.

The Country

Experience living and learning in Sweden, a modern, multicultural and diverse nation that is both a unique northern European nation and a country integrated with the rest of Europe. A century ago Sweden was still a poor, undemocratic, agricultural nation with a homogeneous population. Since the 1850s, there had been an increasingly larger emigration from the country. A large percentage of these Swedish emigrants settled in the Midwest. Since the 1950s, there has been immigration to Sweden instead, including laborers attracted to booming industries in the 1960's and then, starting in the 1970s, a great influx of refugees attracted by the positive notions of Swedish egalitarian values and aided by Swedish immigration laws. A transformation of this order, however positive it may be, does not come without tension and the constant need to make rational choices. While the majority of Swedes may accept and even like living in a dynamic, globally interconnected world, more “traditional” Swedes may fear that their country is losing its national identity and that changes are happening too quickly. At several venues throughout the country and in conversations with both “traditional” and “new” Swedes, students will have many opportunities to learn about Swedish history, politics, cultural values, environmental issues, landscapes, and the increasing diverse nature of Sweden today.

Description and Location

The 2015 Semester in Sweden program will provide participants an opportunity to experience Sweden via a variety of excursions, activities, lectures, tours with an emphasis on discussion, reflections and writing. Participants begin the semester in January in the north of the country (Umeå andJokkmokk) and travel progressively south, spending time in Mora and Stockholm, among other places, before ending in Skåne, a province in southern Sweden. Coursework will be connected to each location and the unique opportunities that they provide, and will focus on the Sami, the environment, history and politics, and current issues in Sweden. Students will come away with a deeper understanding about present day Sweden.

Program Structure

Students will meet informally during Fall semester to get to know each other and there will also be a required pre-departure orientation. Once on-site, students will have enough time to explore each location independently, and additional excursions and day trips will also be integral to the program. Classes will take place in formal and informal settings. The Gustavus faculty leader faciliates the entire program and local host nationals serve as course instructors or onsite experts. In order to take advantage of the people and locations, the course structure will be very different from taking courses on the Gustavus campus. Some courses may be taught only during part of the term, whereas others may span the entire time in Sweden. Frequent group discussion/debriefing times will also play a prominent role.

Deposit and Financial Aid

Upon acceptance into the program, a $350 deposit will be required to hold a participant’s slot. This deposit will be applied to the final program fee. Generally, all Gustavus financial aid (scholarships, grants, institutional aid and loans) will apply to off-campus study, with the exception of work-study. Check with the Gustavus Financial Aid Office for complete details.

Transportation

Students will fly out of Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) to either Umeå or Stockholm and out of either Stockholm or Copenhagen, depending on cost and final program itinerary. All participants must department from MSP, no exceptions. Flight deviations for the return may or may not be available. More details will be available closer to the program start. In-country transportation will include plane, train, bus and automobile.

Housing and Meals

Students will live mostly in university and Folkhögskola dorms and student hostels. Generally three meals per day will be provided through group meals or a meal stipend. Students will need to cover their own housing and meals during the Spring Break period (the dates for this Spring Break will differ from the Gustavus on-campus Spring Break).

Excursions and Events

A variety of special excursions and events will be included as part of the program fee. More details will be available closer to the program start.

Dates

Tentative program dates are mid-January through late May.

Passport and Residence Permit

For U.S. citizens, a passport and Swedish residence permit are required for entry into Sweden. Gustavus CICE will coordinate the residence permit process, but participants are responsible for obtaining their own passports. Information on how to obtain a passport is available from CICE Website or the State Department website at http://travel.state.gov.

Vaccination and Health Information

The Center for Disease Control recommends that all routine vaccinations are up-to-date. The faculty leader may also require immunizations and/or medications as necessary. http://www.cdc.gov/.

Faculty Leaders

Jeff Jeremiason
Spring 2015

Jeff Jeremiason

Jeff Jeremiason, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Environmental Studies, and his wife Maria Jeremiason, will lead the Semester in Sweden program in 2015.