Today would not be complete if I do not share my early morning experience with you! I woke up to an early start this morning as we are back to the phase of chasing deadlines 🙂 Trying to pick a jacket to wear, I looked at the weather app and I was astonished!
-14!! This year in Stockholm, the lowest I have experienced is -12 and with the memory of that day in mind, I felt staying at home might be the better choice. However, knowing that I have the right set of clothes and I won’t be outdoors for too long, I went out regardless!
Here comes the surprising part:
I was dressed the same way I would if it was -3 or some higher temperature but I did not feel any bit colder! In fact, -14 would not have been registered in my head as -14 if I did not check the weather app! In the excitement of my gradual adaptation to the Stockholm weather, I did not cover my hair. The African hair being a lot different and not adapted to the negatives, felt frozen after a 10-minute walk!
So, to all thinking, the Swedish weather is a huge issue. I have two things to say:
you can embrace it fully till your skin starts getting used to it
Do you know that KTH would host the 12th Annual International Sustainable Campus Network (ISCN) in June? Oh well, now you know:)
WHAT IS ISCN?
The International Sustainable Campus Network provides a global forum to support leading colleges, universities and corporate campuses in the exchange of information, ideas and best practices for acheiving sustainable campus operations and integrating sustainability in research and training.
The theme of ISCN 2018 is: Sustainable Development: Acting with Purpose
There was a call for abstract which was due 15th January. Here is a list of possible topics that were available then:
Promoting education for sustainable development
Promoting research for sustainable development
The role of academia in advancing the Sustainable Development Goals
Sustainable meeting solutions: Including examples of how Higher Education Institutes reduce their own impacts using mediated reality and technology for travel-free meetings
Gender, Diversity and Representation: Higher Education Institutes and Sustainable Development
The role of investment in supporting Sustainable Development
Campus operations, Campus Facilities and Campus development
Campus as Living Lab – education, research and collaboration in campus projects
Projects on campus (e.g., building, apps, student engagement, etc.)
Challenge driven education for global sustainable development
Incentives for integrating Sustainable Development in Higher Education Institutes- including major university excellence ranking and rating organizations.
Take a look at the programme planned for the conference here
I am very excited that this is taking place at KTH this year as you know that I believe everyone should take conscious efforts towards a sustainable lifestyle in all that we do. Furthermore, I have exciting news for you, if you are a KTH student! You can volunteer for this event!!
You can volunteer as a technical support or a host. You can find more details about this here
There are benefits to volunteering for this programme and they include:
Free conference registration with free access to the conference’s day sessions (worth 3300 SEK)
All coffee breaks and lunches are provided
A chance to meet and network with established members of an international network devouted to sustainability and student sustainability peers!
A certificate of participation signed by KTH Sustainability Office
And a really cool KTH t-shirt!
WHAT ARE THE APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS?
No previous experience is required and there’s no preference for any discipline or background (Good news right?). All you need to do is to send:
Curriculum Vitae (In English)
Short motivation on why you want to be a student volunteer.
Send this to Erica-Dawn Egan (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Important information: The deadline to send in your application is March 2nd.
So, if you are interested in sustainability and to make an impact, what are you waiting for?
The first time I heard the word “Semla” was my first lecture this year. Not long after that, it was everywhere! Curiosity got the better of me and then I found out about Fettisdagen. This led me to decide to stick to tradition and wait to have my first Semla on Shrove Tuesday.
WHAT IS SEMLA?
Semla is a cardamom-spiced bun which you can cut off the top and then fill it with almond paste and whipped cream. The cut-off top now serves as a lid which is dusted with powdered sugar. Sounds amazing right? Semla is very delicious that it is said that King Adolf Fredrik (a Swedish King) died because he had too many!
Semla was originally eaten only on Shrove Tuesday (the day before Ash Wednesday) as the last festive food before Lent. However, the tradition is not strict anymore as Semlor(plural of Semla) is sold everywhere weeks after Christmas till Fettisdagen. However, after today you’ll have to wait until next year:)
So, this was how I celebrated my Fettisdagen with other international students as we assembled our own traditional Semla. Thanks to the S-chapter!
Who would not want to skate with such a view to behold! I would say, absolutely no one! If you do not have gliding around this ice-skating rink at Kunsträdgarden in Stockholm on your bucket list, you might as well add it right away:)
After the first semester examinations, some of my friends and I decided it was the perfect time to go ice skating. Moving to Sweden, Ice-skating fell on the top ten things I hoped to try out at Stockholm. The joy of getting it crossed out of the list was all the mental preparation I needed to balance myself on those skates!
Considering I have never skated before, I was prepared mentally to fall as many times as possible till I get the hang of gliding on ice with just two blades carrying my weight. However, I surprised myself as I did not fall as much as I expected. Special thanks to the experts that went along with me;)
There are other places you can ice skate at Stockholm but at Kunsträdgarden, you can rent the rates at a good price at 9:00 – 21:00 (weekdays) and 10:00-21:00 (weekends).
Marco gliding like a pro:)
You can tell I was excited (haha!)
In the video, you can hear the sound of the wind clearly. The strong winds and the cold temperatures did not deter us in any way because in Sweden, “Det finns inga dalinga väder, bra daliga kläder” which means
There is no such thing as a bad weather only bad clothing
How do we usher in the new year in Stockholm? Any special activities? Anything you might like to add to your bucket list if you are in Stockholm on December 31st? keep reading to find out;)
I was meant to meet up with a group of people to go see the fireworks from Gamla Stan. I was a bit busy few hours to midnight and this led to falling behind my planned schedule (I planned to be with them at 11:30) On my way, I could feel the excitement on the streets. Moreso, I could smell 2018 had good vibes as everyone was in high spirits.
My first thoughts leaving my apartment was the streets might be a bit empty with only young people coming out to see the fireworks. I thought WRONG! All modes of transportation were full and active as everyone in Stockholm was headed to some destination in which they would be able to observe the fireworks. This even made it easy to know where to go to because for once, “following the crowd” led to the right direction.
As I mentioned earlier, I was running late but guess who still was able to see the fireworks just in time! (ME!!!) Getting to Vasterbron and looking out to the sea towards Gamla Stan and the skies saying “Happy New Year” with people clustered with friends and families and many hugs and good cheer to get you all riled up with excitement to face the new year is what the Swedes look forward to. To give you a glimpse of all that I have been describing, thanks to Lian Yi, I was able to get good pictures and videos:)
Photo credit: Lian Yi
Photo credit: Lian YI
Photo credit: Lian Yi
Photo credit: Lian YI
I am excited for what 2018 would bring my way and at the same time, you should! Thanks to KTH for adding extra layers of colour to my 2017. The amazing people I have met in Sweden so far plus all the memories I would treasure. Remember the group I mentioned at the beginning of the post? There was something we did together after the fireworks that I liked personally. We shared the things we were thankful for in the previous year and then we all mentioned things we look forward to accomplishing in 2018.
This leads me to this:
For prospective students, it is a few days to the application deadline as we all look back at 2017, ensuring you finish your application before the deadline should be on the top of your list of 2018 accomplishments
For other students and everyone reading this blog, making sure you live your best life and saying no to procrastination in the new year would ensure you achieve all set goals to have a fulfilled 2018.
To this end, I look forward to having my best year yet and sharing my experiences with you.