How studying at Stockholm can lead to a great Swedish career

When Han Zhang came from China to study a Masters at Stockholm University in 2009, it put her on the path to a career at a top Swedish law firm. She is one of many overseas students for whom studies in Stockholm have led to careers in Sweden.

How studying at Stockholm can lead to a great Swedish career

Zhang, who is now an associate at law firm Vinge, came to Sweden to take a Masters in International Commercial Arbitration Law in Stockholm University.

She says the university gave her lots of practical help to turn her academic success into career gold:

“The support I got from the university was vast,” says Zhang. “Information about internship and job opportunities are distributed on a regular basis and the information is very helpful. My supervisor also gave me valuable advice when I prepared for my career”.

Zhang got an internship at the Arbitration Institute of Stockholm Chamber of Commerce after completing her course. This in turn, led to the offer of a traineeship at Vinge, where she is employed today.

She chose Stockholm, she says, “because of its academic reputation and its Master Program of International Commercial Arbitration Law, one of the best in the world.”

Zhang now works in the litigation and dispute department, where she specializes in international commercial arbitration cases, some of which concern disputes between Chinese and foreign parties.

The fact that the course had strong links to practising lawyers made it easier to find her way in her career:

“During the course, students have access to the expertise of both academics and practitioners, in Sweden and from all over the world. The program also offers visits to the Arbitration Institute, the court, and leading law firms where arbitration cases are being dealt with on a regular basis,” she says.

Overseas students at Stockholm University go into all sorts of careers, either in Sweden, in their home countries or elsewhere. But there’s no doubt that a degree from Stockholm is extremely well respected by employers in Sweden and around the world.

Perhaps the best way of demonstrating this is to look at where Stockholm University graduates are today. They include the managing directors of three of Sweden’s ten largest companies – meaning there are more graduates from Stockholm than from any other educational establishment. Lars Nyberg at Telia Sonera, Swedbank’s Michael Wolf, and SEB CEO Annika Falkengren all gained qualifications at the university.

The University has also attracted many of the brightest and best of today’s politicians, including the three most senior members of Sweden’s current government. Prime minister Fredrik Reinfeldt took an economics degree there, finance minister Anders Borg gained 90 credits in economics, while foreign minister Carl Bildt studied political science and took other exams at the university between the years of 1968 and 1970. 

Stockholm degrees are not only career oriented, they are also academically rigorous. In the Shanghai Ranking, for example, Stockholm University’s reputation has rise almost on an annual basis, to its current position at number 81.

It is a similar case with in the World University Rankings, published by The Times, which bases its system exclusively on reputation. Not for the first time Stockholm University – and Sweden in general – punch above their weight in comparison with many larger countries around the world.

The reputation is well deserved, according to Zhang:

“The faculty are scholarly and inspirational and the administrative staff are committed and efficient. The students have equal and full opportunity to use the facilities, to take part in social activities, and to consult the Student’s Centre when they need help.”

Her experience is typical of many international and Swedish students who are pursuing high profile careers soon after studying at Stockholm University. Little wonder then, that its reputation extends further and further beyond the borders of Sweden all the time.

Article sponsored by Stockholm University

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Worker workouts work: Swedish study

Working out during office hours can lead to higher productivity for companies, according to a Swedish study carried out by researchers at Stockholm University and Karolinska Institutet.

Worker workouts work: Swedish study

“This comes on the one hand from people getting more done during the hours they are at work, and on the other hand, from less absenteeism owing to sickness,” Ulrica von Thiele Schwarz and Henna Hasson, researchers behind the study in a statement, said in a statement.

A large Swedish dental organisation took part in the study and employees from a total of six work places were divided up into three groups.

One group was asked to devote 2.5 hours to physical activity, distributed across two sessions a week.

The second group had the same decrease in work hours but without the obligatory exercise, and a third group maintained their usual 40 hours work a week.

All employees retained the same salaries and the workload of the practice, in this case the number of patients treated, remained the same while study was being carried out.

The study showed that all three groups were able to maintain or even increase their production level during the study compared with the corresponding period the previous year.

Those who exercised also reported improvements in self-assessed productivity – they felt they got more done at work and had a greater capacity for work, as well as being absent from work less often.

A total of 177 participated in the study to its completion which lasted for 12 months.

Participants were asked to fill in a questionnaire at the beginning, mid-term and end of the study period.