The lunch on August 29th was organized in order to introduce all the scholarship recipients to their sponsors and to welcome the new students who are now at Chalmers for their first year. There were 21 scholarship recipients present as well as representatives from Volvo Car Corporation and Volvo Group. Representatives from US Friends of Chalmers also participated.
Entrepreneur Sievert Larsson was a special guest, as well as Lars Eriksson, who donated money for the first time.
- Thank you for coming to Chalmers and Sweden, Peter Lindwall, Development Officer, emphasized in his welcoming speech.
This year's opening speech was held by Maria Knutson Wedel, Vice Principal of Undergraduate Studies. She started off by talking about Chalmers’ strategic position of working in various ways for a sustainable future.
- Chalmers stands for world class education, now and in the future. With our excellent students, we hold our own in the international competition, said Maria Knutson Wedel.
She continued her speech by addressing the scholarship recipients directly:
- We know that you all, as graduates with master degrees from Chalmers, will work globally in international companies. We also know that you will be working in teams with various cultural backgrounds. Together we lay the foundation for the future’s team-based work environments through the global intercultural education offered at Chalmers.
Then Maria Knutson Wedel turned to the sponsors:
- I would like to emphasize how important it is that you as sponsors feel that you are participating in Chalmers’ work for a sustainable future.
- As William Chalmers said, Avancez, Maria Knutson Wedel ended her speech.
This year a new alumnus and now sponsor, Lars Eriksson was welcomed. The student who for the first time received Lars Eriksson's scholarship comes from Mexico and is studying her second year at Chalmers.
- I am so proud of the nomination, said Ana Isabella Navarette Perez.
Entrepreneur and philanthropist Sievert Larsson has donated money to a scholarship in his name, aimed at young Thais wishing to study for a master's degree at Chalmers. He delivered a speech to the scholarship recipients to mark the occasion.
- This is my fifth year as a scholarship sponsor. It has been an honour to be one of two private sponsors for Chalmers International Master Programme, said Sievert Larsson.
- I really appreciate seeing so many scholarship recipients from Thailand and I’m happy to be in this position, since I know I’m helping students and youth from Thailand to change their lives, said a very proud sponsor.
Fifteen students from Thailand have studied at Chalmers so far and with good results. Sievert Larsson likes to stay in touch with the students after they have completed their degrees.
- Recently I received an email from a Chalmers alumnus from Thailand, who had been given an assignment within the Thai Minister of Foreign Affairs for a year, based in Buthan, he said.
- The reason I donate is because Göteborg as a city is very dear to me. I was born in Göteborg, studied in Göteborg and worked here. When I was young, Chalmers topped the list of educations with high status. But unfortunately I never studied at Chalmers, because I never applied, Sievert Larsson continued with a twinkle in his eye.
Unique opportunities for international students
Chanin Lerdmaleewong from Thailand, a first year student at the master programme in chemical engineering, and a recipient of the Sievert Larsson scholarship, says the scholarship gives him a unique personal opportunity to learn more about how things work in Europe. He would also like to travel in Europe in order to learn more, if given the opportunity.
Que Wang from China and Anusha Barman from India, are both in their second year of the master programme in electrical engineering. She says she appreciates the “know how” she feels she’s learning from her education.
- My education is directly linked to real life, and that’s very useful, said Que Wang.
- I want to try to learn about Swedish commerce and business while I’m here, Anusha Barman added during our conversation.
Before we wrapped up, they both commented on how much they appreciate how clean and beautiful Sweden is and that Swedes are warm and open.
Collaboration with industry
The Volvo Group has awarded scholarships for the third consecutive year and was represented today by Teresa Krook.
- Scholarships give young people an opportunity to acquire fantastic experience. The group receiving scholarships two years ago, have all had summer jobs, extra jobs, or gained a mentor. That’s fantastic, said Teresa Krook.
- Volvo is well established in the scholarship student countries and this means students will become good ambassadors for the company. India and China are important markets and it is nice to see these young students contributing with ideas and energy. The cultural exchange is energizing for everyone, Teresa Krook emphasized.
Text: Catharina Norberg
Photo: Michael Nystås