In Sweden, the semester is divided into two quarters. Today, I sit quite pleased with myself, because I have finished the first quarter classes. Here are a few of the things I learned.

  • Dead days, or the glorious reprieve of classes before finals, are not universal.
  • Everything, including actual test taking, is done in an orderly manner in Sweden.
  • The standard question to gauge success is ‘do you think you passed?’

It’s amazing to me that passing is considered a success in Sweden. However, the stress of international members in group projects, unfamiliarity with Swedish professor’s standards, and 8 weeks of an intense pace curriculum have helped me understand this passing mentality

One week we were in first quarter classes, the next we were taking finals and the following week we will start new classes. I’m not used to the successive progression of academic events. America has conditioned me to think of finals as the end all be all, necessitating a month long break after successful completion.

Here’s how my first quarter classes went:

  1. Entrepreneuring. This course completely pushed me out of my comfort zone. The whole course investigated the process of entrepreneurship. So accordingly my classmates and I had to create a venture idea, interview a Swedish entrepreneur, and create lectures to cover various entrepreneuring topics.
  2. Industrial Distribution and Retailing. Supply chain management with a dash of marketing. We looked at how to evaluate a supply chain’s efficiency and understand channel member’s perspectives. Highlight: guest lecturer from IKEA.
  3. Consumer Behavior. This was my favorite class. We examined the motivations for consumer choices in the marketplace. That means we looked at everything from classical conditioning, theories of planned behavior and tons of advertisements.

These were not the traditional classes I would have taken if I had completed my final semester at A&M. However, I appreciate the fact that every day I had the chance to see a world beyond my perspective.


Swedish monument

Jonkoping University


Beautiful autumn leaves!