What do you have to look forward to during your time at the School? Students have shared their thoughts and feelings about their studies, but also everything else that you can be a part of as a student at our school.

Alumnae Villemo Karnström works as a risk officer in Brussels at the EU Commission. In 2019, Villemo completed her Master's degree in economics. During her studies, she did two exchange semesters, a minor field study, a UN internship, an EU internship, and a job as a research assistant.

Villemo Karnström works at the EU Commission

Vladyslav Zahladko moved from Kyiv, Ukraine to study MSc Innovation and Industrial Management at the School of Business, Economics and Law in 2021. Half-way through his first year Ukraine was invaded, and he has been living the past six months in uncertainty. Now he has just started studying his second and last year as an international student in Gothenburg.

Vladyslav studies MSc Innovation and Industrial Management

Natalia Salazar Bustamante from Mexico studied an exchange semester in Gothenburg and came back to study Economics for her Master’s degree. She has now returned to Mexico to work as a modeling analyst and has recently been elected to the board of the Alumni Mexico Sweden (AMS) association.

Natalia promised herself to return to Gothenburg for her Master's degree

AI has become a hot topic of discussion in recent times. Its implementation in the academic world is becoming more and more frequent, especially for students.

Students and AI

The School hosts several events, seminars and lectures every year. CEOs, politicians and other high-profile speakers are invited to talk to students and personnel on different subject and sharing their insights and experiences.

Interview with Jim Rowan,
CEO of Volvo Cars

Risper Gerald Yusuph, student at MSc International Business and Trade

”The School has different activities that bring us together. When we have assignments we are assigned into different groups so I get to meet new people and make new friends.”

Natalia Vdovina, student at MSc Finance

”To be an international student here is very nice. Everyone knows English, so if people don’t want to study Swedish – or find it difficult – they could easily survive without it.”

Arlanda Pllana, student at MSc Management

”I got a mix of international students, but also a very good course plan. I was given the opportunity to choose courses in subjects that interested me.”

Jonatan Norman, student at MSc Innovation and Industrial Management

”The practical work is very valuable. We are not just sitting in the lecture room and thinking, but we are actually doing things for companies and contributing to their business.”

Dimitris Zacharopoulous, student at MSc Logistics and Transport Management

”I think the School does a great job in maintaining a connection between the academia and the industry, which gives a great perspective to the students and raises their level of confidence.”

Lukas Bard, student at MSc
Knowledge-Based Entrepreneurship

”The knowledge you build up here is highly sought-after by companies, and you get to study a lot of interesting subjects such as innovation and different kinds of decision-making.”

Student life
at the School
Natalia promised herself to return to Gothenburg for her Master's degree

You first did an exchange semester in Gothenburg in 2016 and then decided to come back for your master’s in 2019. Can you tell us more about what made you come back?

I was mesmerized by how Gothenburg felt like a cosy student town with buildings spread across town. Gothenburg has a lot to offer so there was a lot to discover, for me it was a lot of fun to go out to the woods and be no more than 30 minutes from my apartment. 

In particular, the part that captivated me the most is how the education is taught, Swedish students learn through their research and the available material for each lesson. In Mexico, we rely on what the teacher gives and nothing else, so during my exchange, it helped me to do more research on every topic I studied.  

I must say that at the end of my exchange semester in 2017 I was in love with both the School and Gothenburg in general. I had professors that taught me a lot, the HHGS student union made me feel at home, and for every doubt, I had there was guidance from school and a lot of friends. But I felt like my experience was over very quickly and I discovered there were international Master’s programmes in Business and Economics. 

I remember landing in Mexico in 2017 and promising myself to work and save money to go back and study for my master's degree. I did a lot of research on the Economics programme and I liked the fact that I could choose what to study because the programme has elective courses. 

Long story short, I worked at KPMG for 2 years which allowed me to have money for all the steps (exams, visa, plane) and, I received a scholarship and funding from the Central Bank of Mexico. I am unbelievably happy that I was accepted and could accomplish my dream. 

What subject did you find most interesting and why? 

Development Economics! I chose Economics as my degree to in some way along my professional career contribute to decreasing poverty in Mexico. In this subject, we learned several theories and arguments that economists had made over the years, along with cases that have used these theories to check their efficiency. Through this lens, I could think of different scientific studies that can be done in Mexico to aid development. 

Were you in any other extracurricular activities? 

Yes, I was in the Graduate Student Association as the CFO in 2021 and also worked with the communication department at the University of Gothenburg to promote the University. I made a lot of good friends and I miss them a lot. 

Now you are back in Mexico working as a modeling analyst at Nielsen, what is that like?  

We develop statistical models provided by clients to understand where to allocate resources. Let’s say a company invested in Facebook, TV, Ads, and print, our job is to develop a regression that captures where is the best place to invest given the volume of sales or income. I recently started there but so far, I am happy working with other economists in my area.   

What is Alumni Mexico Sweden? 

AMS is a network of alumni certified by Svenska Institutet, whose aim is to promote initiatives that link Mexico and Sweden. The board comprises alumni who studied at a Swedish University for at least one term. We are four main board members working with the Swedish Embassy to foster said link. 

What do you hope to achieve with the AMS?

I would like to organize activities that connect Sweden to Mexico because we have a lot of similarities as a society. Also, share what I learned in Sweden about traditions, sustainability, and way of life).  

Why do you think it is important for alumni to have these kinds of networks? 

When I came back from Sweden in 2022, I felt different. My experiences in Gothenburg changed me. So, even when I was home something was missing. One day, the Swedish embassy organized a networking event for alumni and that is where I found AMS. After that day I met so many alumni that had somewhat the same experiences and feelings about coming home. This is why I think alumni networks not only provide a professional network space but also a place where people that have similar experiences can gather and share memories. My personal goal is to share with other presumptive students the love that I developed for Sweden when I went in 2016. 

Would you come back to Gothenburg a third time for a Ph.D.? 

ABSOLUTELY. 

Vladyslav studies MSc Innovation and Industrial Management

Being far away from home and not knowing what to expect next while studying a demanding Master’s programme, was not easy for Vladyslav.  
-It was very hard mentally as my whole family and friends are in Ukraine. The past six months I have been living in this state of uncertainty when you don't know what to expect in an hour, in a day, or in a week, says Vladyslav. Eventually, I tried to channel those emotions into motivation to work and study, in order to contribute to my home country as much as possible. Thanks to the support of the School and my peers, I was able to keep working even during the darkest hours, he continues.  

The reason Vladyslav chose to study in Gothenburg was to follow a childhood dream. 
-My big dream since childhood was to work with cars, and since Gothenburg is a heart of the Swedish automotive industry it was a perfect match, says Vladyslav and continues; I also admired the Scandinavian countries for a long time prior to applying for a Master’s programme here. Moreover, Sweden in my opinion has a perfect environment for business development and is a leading innovation hub in Europe. Lastly, universities in Sweden proposed the best scholarship and education funding options. Combining all these facts, Sweden was the best option for my future! 

When it was time to decide which programme to study Vladyslav read through the curriculum and course descriptions and the best match with his interest was the MSc Programme in Innovation and Industrial Management.  
- Another important aspect was the alumni career path. I was searching for people who finished the MSc IIM program via LinkedIn to learn where they were working after graduation, comparing that to my plans and aspirations. Finally, was the actual feedback from the IIM programme students and alumni, which was very positive, says Vladyslav. 

Vladyslav concludes that the main difference between Ukraine and Sweden lies in the approach to education. 
- In Sweden, students are having more freedom in terms of how, when, and what to study. In Ukraine, the process is more predefined and linear. From my experience Swedish way of education requires students to demonstrate strong discipline and self-organization skills.

Moreover, Vladyslav thinks that the teachers at the School are very professional, open and student focused.
-They encourage creativity and always let your share all your feedback. I feel that they are on our side, and they truly want us to succeed, says Vladyslav. 

According to Vladyslav the School perfectly combines interesting courses, a great learning environment and a variety of events and activities to make you a better person and professional 
-Also, one of the most prominent things about my programme is structure, says Vladyslav. It is very diverse, and the education process here is not limited only to lectures or seminars. Courses can well include various workshops, guest lectures, live cases, on-field trips, individual or group assignments, and so on. Every course is unique and different, which makes learning extremely fun and engaging! At the same time, all courses are seamlessly linked together to create a coherent picture.  

The childhood dream has been replaced with a new vision for Vladyslav; 
- My goal is to work at the intersection of business and tech. I feel like it is the direction that I want to explore and where I can add the most value. 

Villemo Karnström works at the EU Commission

What is it like to work for the European Commission?  
- It’s incredibly  rewarding. You work with people from different backgrounds – both in terms of education, experiences, and nationalities. It is sometimes intense work and hard in the beginning to get the hang of all the abbreviations, but definitely worth it.  
 
Can you describe what a risk officer does?  
-Well, it depends. In my case, I work with a unit that does the financial risk assessment of guarantees that the EU gives to developing countries. In practice, it means consistent checks of data, modeling meetings, and working on horizontal issues through meetings between different units.  

How did you end up at the European Commission? 
-During my time at the School, I took every opportunity to travel and see the world. I went on two exchange semesters; to Australia during my Bachelor’s and to Italy during my Master’s. This allowed me to take courses I would not have been able to at the School, but it also made me even more eager to work abroad after graduation. During my Master’s in Economics I also had the opportunity to do a 10-week internship as a course, which I did at the international section of the Ministry of Finance. This allowed me to have better insight into the work at the EU. Finally, I was also rewarded a Minor Field Study scholarship (which you can apply to both the bachelor’s and master’s thesis) to write part of my master’s thesis in Nairobi, Kenya.  

After I finished my studies, I had the opportunity to do a Fellowship at UNICEF, through the University of Gothenburg. Therefore, I spent 6 months in Geneva, Switzerland, working on coordinating child protection in emergencies. I then spent a semester at Praktikantprogrammet (with Latinamerikagrupperna) learning about issues with human rights and the environment, where you usually do a 5-month internship to a local organization in e.g. Latin America. Unfortunately, this did not happen due to Corona, but I did get accepted to do a Blue Book Traineeship at the EU Commission, which I did instead. After 5 months at the Commission, I returned to Sweden as a research assistant for Thomas Sterner in Environmental Economics. Ten months later, I got a job as a contract agent same unit as I did the traineeship at INTPA, EU Commission. A combination of dedication and luck brought me to my current job at the EU and I am really happy I ended up working for the EU Commission, only three years after my graduation.  

How has your degree from the School prepared you for your work tasks?  
-My current job is more focused on Finance rather than Economics, but I am still using my analytical skills and background especially micro- and macroeconomics for understanding the basis of the credit risk analysis we do. Moreover, my degree in economics helped me get the jobs I had before the current one and is a great basis for any job within the EU since it is broad. However, the EU has so many different departments – so any degree is welcome.  

What are your recommendations for students who wish for a career at the European Commission? 
-First of all, just apply! Unfortunately, Swedish people do not apply enough, afraid that they will not be skilled enough to get it. Also, if you do not get your dream job on the first try – get some experience in another job and apply again later. For a career in the EU, it is always positive with other language skills besides English, even if not required (I work in English), so start already with Duolingo/join IntU/take an extra course to get those language skills! 

Moreover, for an EU career at the Commission, doing a Blue Book Traineeship is one of the best ways. You can apply twice per year after you have finished your bachelor’s. Here it is great with international experiences (such as an internship and/or an exchange semester), other experiences, and a master’s and/or language skills also gives extra points.

The School hosts several events, seminars and lectures every year. CEOs, politicians and other high-profile speakers are invited to talk to students and personnel on different subject and sharing their insights and experiences.

AI has become a hot topic of discussion in recent times. Its implementation in the academic world is becoming more and more frequent, especially for students.

What do you have to look forward to during your time at the School? Students have shared their thoughts and feelings about their studies, but also everything else that you can be a part of as a student at our school.

Alumnae Villemo Karnström works as a risk officer in Brussels at the EU Commission. In 2019, Villemo completed her Master's degree in economics. During her studies, she did two exchange semesters, a minor field study, a UN internship, an EU internship, and a job as a research assistant.

Villemo Karnström works at the EU Commission

Vladyslav Zahladko moved from Kyiv, Ukraine to study MSc Innovation and Industrial Management at the School of Business, Economics and Law in 2021. Half-way through his first year Ukraine was invaded, and he has been living the past six months in uncertainty. Now he has just started studying his second and last year as an international student in Gothenburg.

Vladyslav studies MSc Innovation and Industrial Management

Natalia Salazar Bustamante from Mexico studied an exchange semester in Gothenburg and came back to study Economics for her Master’s degree. She has now returned to Mexico to work as a modeling analyst and has recently been elected to the board of the Alumni Mexico Sweden (AMS) association.

Natalia promised herself to return to Gothenburg for her Master's degree

AI and students

Interview with Jim Rowan,
CEO of Volvo Cars

Risper Gerald Yusuph, student at MSc International Business and Trade

”The School has different activities that bring us together. When we have assignments we are assigned into different groups so I get to meet new people and make new friends.”

Natalia Vdovina, student at MSc Finance

”To be an international student here is very nice. Everyone knows English, so if people don’t want to study Swedish – or find it difficult – they could easily survive without it.”

Jonatan Norman, student at MSc Innovation and Industrial Management

”The practical work is very valuable. We are not just sitting in the lecture room and thinking, but we are actually doing things for companies and contributing to their business.”

Dimitris Zacharopoulous, student at MSc Logistics and Transport Management

”I think the School does a great job in maintaining a connection between the academia and the industry, which gives a great perspective to the students and raises their level of confidence.”

Lukas Bard, student at MSc
Knowledge-Based Entrepreneurship

”The knowledge you build up here is highly sought-after by companies, and you get to study a lot of interesting subjects such as innovation and different kinds of decision-making.”

Arlanda Pllana, student at MSc Management

”I got a mix of international students, but also a very good course plan. I was given the opportunity to choose courses in subjects that interested me.”

Student life
at the School

You first did an exchange semester in Gothenburg in 2016 and then decided to come back for your master’s in 2019. Can you tell us more about what made you come back?

I was mesmerized by how Gothenburg felt like a cosy student town with buildings spread across town. Gothenburg has a lot to offer so there was a lot to discover, for me it was a lot of fun to go out to the woods and be no more than 30 minutes from my apartment. 

In particular, the part that captivated me the most is how the education is taught, Swedish students learn through their research and the available material for each lesson. In Mexico, we rely on what the teacher gives and nothing else, so during my exchange, it helped me to do more research on every topic I studied.  

I must say that at the end of my exchange semester in 2017 I was in love with both the School and Gothenburg in general. I had professors that taught me a lot, the HHGS student union made me feel at home, and for every doubt, I had there was guidance from school and a lot of friends. But I felt like my experience was over very quickly and I discovered there were international Master’s programmes in Business and Economics. 

I remember landing in Mexico in 2017 and promising myself to work and save money to go back and study for my master's degree. I did a lot of research on the Economics programme and I liked the fact that I could choose what to study because the programme has elective courses. 

Long story short, I worked at KPMG for 2 years which allowed me to have money for all the steps (exams, visa, plane) and, I received a scholarship and funding from the Central Bank of Mexico. I am unbelievably happy that I was accepted and could accomplish my dream. 

What subject did you find most interesting and why? 

Development Economics! I chose Economics as my degree to in some way along my professional career contribute to decreasing poverty in Mexico. In this subject, we learned several theories and arguments that economists had made over the years, along with cases that have used these theories to check their efficiency. Through this lens, I could think of different scientific studies that can be done in Mexico to aid development. 

Were you in any other extracurricular activities? 

Yes, I was in the Graduate Student Association as the CFO in 2021 and also worked with the communication department at the University of Gothenburg to promote the University. I made a lot of good friends and I miss them a lot. 

Now you are back in Mexico working as a modeling analyst at Nielsen, what is that like?  

We develop statistical models provided by clients to understand where to allocate resources. Let’s say a company invested in Facebook, TV, Ads, and print, our job is to develop a regression that captures where is the best place to invest given the volume of sales or income. I recently started there but so far, I am happy working with other economists in my area.   

What is Alumni Mexico Sweden? 

AMS is a network of alumni certified by Svenska Institutet, whose aim is to promote initiatives that link Mexico and Sweden. The board comprises alumni who studied at a Swedish University for at least one term. We are four main board members working with the Swedish Embassy to foster said link. 

What do you hope to achieve with the AMS?

I would like to organize activities that connect Sweden to Mexico because we have a lot of similarities as a society. Also, share what I learned in Sweden about traditions, sustainability, and way of life).  

Why do you think it is important for alumni to have these kinds of networks? 

When I came back from Sweden in 2022, I felt different. My experiences in Gothenburg changed me. So, even when I was home something was missing. One day, the Swedish embassy organized a networking event for alumni and that is where I found AMS. After that day I met so many alumni that had somewhat the same experiences and feelings about coming home. This is why I think alumni networks not only provide a professional network space but also a place where people that have similar experiences can gather and share memories. My personal goal is to share with other presumptive students the love that I developed for Sweden when I went in 2016. 

Would you come back to Gothenburg a third time for a Ph.D.? 

ABSOLUTELY. 

Natalia promised herself to return to Gothenburg for her Master's degree

Being far away from home and not knowing what to expect next while studying a demanding Master’s programme, was not easy for Vladyslav.  
-It was very hard mentally as my whole family and friends are in Ukraine. The past six months I have been living in this state of uncertainty when you don't know what to expect in an hour, in a day, or in a week, says Vladyslav. Eventually, I tried to channel those emotions into motivation to work and study, in order to contribute to my home country as much as possible. Thanks to the support of the School and my peers, I was able to keep working even during the darkest hours, he continues.  

The reason Vladyslav chose to study in Gothenburg was to follow a childhood dream. 
-My big dream since childhood was to work with cars, and since Gothenburg is a heart of the Swedish automotive industry it was a perfect match, says Vladyslav and continues; I also admired the Scandinavian countries for a long time prior to applying for a Master’s programme here. Moreover, Sweden in my opinion has a perfect environment for business development and is a leading innovation hub in Europe. Lastly, universities in Sweden proposed the best scholarship and education funding options. Combining all these facts, Sweden was the best option for my future! 

When it was time to decide which programme to study Vladyslav read through the curriculum and course descriptions and the best match with his interest was the MSc Programme in Innovation and Industrial Management.  
- Another important aspect was the alumni career path. I was searching for people who finished the MSc IIM program via LinkedIn to learn where they were working after graduation, comparing that to my plans and aspirations. Finally, was the actual feedback from the IIM programme students and alumni, which was very positive, says Vladyslav. 

Vladyslav concludes that the main difference between Ukraine and Sweden lies in the approach to education. 
- In Sweden, students are having more freedom in terms of how, when, and what to study. In Ukraine, the process is more predefined and linear. From my experience Swedish way of education requires students to demonstrate strong discipline and self-organization skills.

Moreover, Vladyslav thinks that the teachers at the School are very professional, open and student focused.
-They encourage creativity and always let your share all your feedback. I feel that they are on our side, and they truly want us to succeed, says Vladyslav. 

According to Vladyslav the School perfectly combines interesting courses, a great learning environment and a variety of events and activities to make you a better person and professional 
-Also, one of the most prominent things about my programme is structure, says Vladyslav. It is very diverse, and the education process here is not limited only to lectures or seminars. Courses can well include various workshops, guest lectures, live cases, on-field trips, individual or group assignments, and so on. Every course is unique and different, which makes learning extremely fun and engaging! At the same time, all courses are seamlessly linked together to create a coherent picture.  

The childhood dream has been replaced with a new vision for Vladyslav; 
- My goal is to work at the intersection of business and tech. I feel like it is the direction that I want to explore and where I can add the most value. 

Vladyslav studies MSc Innovation and Industrial Management

What is it like to work for the European Commission?  
- It’s incredibly  rewarding. You work with people from different backgrounds – both in terms of education, experiences, and nationalities. It is sometimes intense work and hard in the beginning to get the hang of all the abbreviations, but definitely worth it.  
 
Can you describe what a risk officer does?  
-Well, it depends. In my case, I work with a unit that does the financial risk assessment of guarantees that the EU gives to developing countries. In practice, it means consistent checks of data, modeling meetings, and working on horizontal issues through meetings between different units.  

How did you end up at the European Commission? 
-During my time at the School, I took every opportunity to travel and see the world. I went on two exchange semesters; to Australia during my Bachelor’s and to Italy during my Master’s. This allowed me to take courses I would not have been able to at the School, but it also made me even more eager to work abroad after graduation. During my Master’s in Economics I also had the opportunity to do a 10-week internship as a course, which I did at the international section of the Ministry of Finance. This allowed me to have better insight into the work at the EU. Finally, I was also rewarded a Minor Field Study scholarship (which you can apply to both the bachelor’s and master’s thesis) to write part of my master’s thesis in Nairobi, Kenya.  

After I finished my studies, I had the opportunity to do a Fellowship at UNICEF, through the University of Gothenburg. Therefore, I spent 6 months in Geneva, Switzerland, working on coordinating child protection in emergencies. I then spent a semester at Praktikantprogrammet (with Latinamerikagrupperna) learning about issues with human rights and the environment, where you usually do a 5-month internship to a local organization in e.g. Latin America. Unfortunately, this did not happen due to Corona, but I did get accepted to do a Blue Book Traineeship at the EU Commission, which I did instead. After 5 months at the Commission, I returned to Sweden as a research assistant for Thomas Sterner in Environmental Economics. Ten months later, I got a job as a contract agent same unit as I did the traineeship at INTPA, EU Commission. A combination of dedication and luck brought me to my current job at the EU and I am really happy I ended up working for the EU Commission, only three years after my graduation.  

How has your degree from the School prepared you for your work tasks?  
-My current job is more focused on Finance rather than Economics, but I am still using my analytical skills and background especially micro- and macroeconomics for understanding the basis of the credit risk analysis we do. Moreover, my degree in economics helped me get the jobs I had before the current one and is a great basis for any job within the EU since it is broad. However, the EU has so many different departments – so any degree is welcome.  

What are your recommendations for students who wish for a career at the European Commission? 
-First of all, just apply! Unfortunately, Swedish people do not apply enough, afraid that they will not be skilled enough to get it. Also, if you do not get your dream job on the first try – get some experience in another job and apply again later. For a career in the EU, it is always positive with other language skills besides English, even if not required (I work in English), so start already with Duolingo/join IntU/take an extra course to get those language skills! 

Moreover, for an EU career at the Commission, doing a Blue Book Traineeship is one of the best ways. You can apply twice per year after you have finished your bachelor’s. Here it is great with international experiences (such as an internship and/or an exchange semester), other experiences, and a master’s and/or language skills also gives extra points.

Villemo Karnström works at the EU Commission