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​​Chalmers president and CEO Stefan Bengtsson greeted the new master's students through a live event hosted on Zoom. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Master’s students greeted online

​Usually, about 400 new master’s students from all over the world eagerly walk the campus halls at Chalmers on Welcome day, but this year's reception was a bit different due to the global pandemic. 
Instead of meeting in large groups with fellow master’s students and being greeted by Chalmers president Stefan Bengtsson in the largest conference room at Chalmers, the event took place digitally on 25 August 2020 – through a live event at Zoom. 

He was joined by current master's students Huizhong Cao and Tarakeshwar AP​ who talked about how they have experienced their studies at Chalmers during the pandemic. 
“Many of our international students will for various reasons not be able to travel to campus in time for the orientation, so it is important that they feel welcome and that we create something special for them anyway”, says Susanna Göranzon, project coordinator at Chalmers who has been planning the virtual orientation.

WelcomedayCIRC: s (Chalmers International Reception Committee)​ phadder manager Juan Lopéz has together with his colleagues greeted the new students upon their arrival at the airport and train station. The group has also been planning welcome activities for the new master’s students who have been able to arrive to Gothenburg. This year, those activities will be performed in smaller groups. The new students are being told to keep their distance at all times and to stay at home in case of illness. 
“I believe that we have a very important job right now. These students are doing their best to travel to Gothenburg and accomplish their dream of studying their master’s at Chalmers. Understanding their background, especially during this global pandemic, and make them feel comfortable during the activities that we have planned for them is our priority. It will be for sure a different reception, but I think it will be one that none of us will forget."

Julian Reinhold from Germany is one of the new master’s students that has managed to arrive to Gothenburg despite the pandemic.
“I travelled here by car with my parents who are staying in Sweden a little longer for their vacation. We took the ferry from Rostock to Trelleborg and then drove to Gothenburg. After a couple of days in a hotel, I was finally able to move to my own place yesterday. It feels great to have an apartment for myself.”

He studied for three years at the Technical University of Munich before he came to Chalmers to join the master’s programme in Innovative and Sustainable Chemical Engineering.
“I felt like I had to see more of the world. I also came here to find ways for a more sustainable chemical engineering than it is right now in the industry. Researching on new innovations in this field is also something I am looking forward to.”

Olimpia Nasser from Poland is also one of the new master’s students attending Chalmers this year. She has a background in energy engineering.
“I chose Chalmers because my dream job is to become a process engineer, and a master’s in chemical engineering will increase my chances to develop in this direction. Moreover, Chalmers is a highly rated university and Gothenburg is a beautiful city.”

She has already been in town for a couple of days and has had time to experience the city on her own.  
“Sometimes I worry that it will get lonely because of the pandemic but strolling around and having fika at cosy cafés in the sun has been amazing. I look forward to meeting new friends at the introduction week and I understand that we need to follow restrictions, but at the same time I wish this whole covid-19 situation will be over soon.”

Text: Vedrana Sivac​


Published: Fri 28 Aug 2020.