Celebrating the End of the Fall Semester

Recently, the End of the Semester Showcases were held at DIS Stockholm and DIS Copenhagen! Students presented their course projects to each other, the faculty and staff, and Homestay hosts. From research presentations to photography installations and artworks, it was inspiring to see what everyone had worked on throughout the semester. We asked a few students at DIS Stockholm about their final works.


Davonya and Abbie, Sewanee, University of the South

“We are enrolled in the core course, Positive Psychology. On our study tour to Greece, we investigated the meaning behind a Greek concept called Filotimo. Filotimo cannot be directly translated into any other language, but it implies feeling happy and harmonious; treating other people like your friend of honor; being content with less; and becoming one with nature. We asked locals what makes them happy, and ‘spending time with family’ was an answer that we kept hearing. In class, we also learned a lot about misconceptions about positive psychology. In order to become genuinely happy, you actually need to address negative issues and let it make you heal and grow. Filotimo has taught us a lot and made us very reflective of what is truly important.”

>> Read about the Positive Psychology core course here


Kat, University of Kansas, and Matt, College of Wooster

“Gender Equality and Sexuality in Scandinavia took us on tour to Berlin. We did a comparative analysis of the manifestation of the LGBTQ community in both Berlin and Stockholm/Scandinavia. In our analysis, we focused on the historical legacy of war in terms of sexuality and gender. World War II has had an enormous impact on the LGBTQ community in Berlin. After the war ended, they actively re-established themselves as a community in the so-called Golden Age. Scandinavians, however, have not been confronted with war to a similar extent. This resulted in some differences that can still be seen today. The typical LGBTQ neighborhood in Berlin is condensed, concentrated, and quite separated from the rest of the city. In Stockholm and Scandinavia, on the other hand, we noticed that the acceptance of the LGBTQ community is much greater and even ‘mainstream.’ Being in Berlin and doing field work allowed us to get first-hand experience on our research topic, which was both helpful and really fun.”

>> Read about the Gender & Sexuality Studies Program here


Hannah, Denison University

“In the U.S., I am doing a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and here at DIS, I am taking the Forensic Psychology core course. We went on study tour to Edinburgh and one of our academic visits was at a prison. What stood out most is that the prison system in Edinburgh had a strong focus on the psychology of rehabilitation. The ultimate aim is to keep prisons empty and ensure that former prisoners do not commit crimes again. Therefore, several rehabilitation programs are designed that are then directly applied to the prisoners. The programs differ and may correspond to the type of crime committed, in order to keep turn-back rates low. In addition to exploring Edinburgh, it was also really interesting to see what kind of jobs a forensic psychologist can have!”

>> Read about the Forensic Psychology core course and study tour here


Aleena, Dartmouth College, and Max, Skidmore College

“We studied the Economics of Gender and did several case studies on for instance the wage gap in different countries. It was surprising to find out that even in welfare states such as Norway, the so-called Norwegian Gender Equality Paradox exists. This means that, despite having a very strong notion of gender equality, in Norway women are underrepresented in the top business jobs. Other, more conservative countries actually score a lot better. This was a real eye-opener, as we expected to find complete opposite results. Because of these counter-intuitive findings, it was really interesting to apply the theories and concepts we learned in class to a real-world situation.”

>> Read about the elective course, Economics of Gender


Katie, Middlebury College, and Matt, College of Wooster

“As a final assessment of the course Transgender in Scandinavia, we created this artwork. It represents two bodies. One could be considered typically female, with feathery hair and outlined in pink, whereas the other one can be said to be typically male, with a blue outline. They are met with a lot of outside pressure, such as debt, depression, grades. Pressure that society puts on us. Where the two bodies meet in this installation, they overlap. This is what represents the trans identity. You can recognize it by the lack of gender normative pink and blue. Instead, we have used multiple colors and highlighted only positive concepts. We made this to show what trans people go through and how limiting the gender binary may feel for them. Trans is beautiful.”

>> Read about the Transgender in Scandinavia elective course

About the Author

Nick Doggen Photo

Nick (age 23) studies environmental social science at Stockholm University. A Dutch native, he moved to Stockholm two years ago. Although once the very worst at finding artsy coffee places and affordable restaurants, he now has an eye for what’s going on in the city. Likes: Hiking in nature and spontaneous meet-ups with friends. Still afraid of the dark Swedish winters.

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