Traditional celebration of Academic Ceremony

It was a grand celebration and certainly a memory for life for the doctors, professors and teachers who took centre stage when the University hosted an Academic Ceremony in the atmospheric setting of "Gasklockorna" in Gävle.

There was a low-key and expectant buzz among the more than 200 finely dressed guests at the University of Gävle's academic ceremony when the ceremony began on Friday afternoon. As usual, the ceremony began with a grand procession of doctors, professors and guests of honour, such as Vice-Chancellors from other universities and the county governor, representatives of the university's management and student marshals.

Free academia is a pillar

The ceremony began with the Vice-Chacellor's speech. Ylva Fältholm noted that many of the crises we saw at the last ceremony two years ago, unfortunately still characterise our lives and societies.

– Crisis seems to be the new normal, she said. Higher education is not unaffected and security issues are now on the agenda also in academia. Troll factories, hacker attacks and disinformation characterise everyday life.

– A free academy is one of the pillars of a democratic society and needs to be constantly defended and protected. In the latest survey of the trust that the Swedish people have in various social institutions, universities and colleges come second.

We have a strong trust to manage. Higher education and research are more important than they have been for a long time, said Ylva Fältholm.

She also mentioned that European co-operation has been strengthened now that the University of Gävle is part of a so-called European University, together with eight other universities in an alliance called EU GREEN.

"Thank you for your efforts"

She then turned to the main protagonists of the ceremony; the doctors, honorary doctors, professors, excellent teachers and teacher of the year.

– Today we will celebrate and honour a number of researchers, teachers and collaborators for their efforts. Thank you for your efforts to fulfil the University's vision and mission. And for your contribution to solving societal challenges and creating a sustainable world through education and research!

Micael Cronhjort.

Micael Cronhjort was one of those recognised as an excellent teacher.

Proud relatives, representatives of the surrounding community and the public then watched as 13 doctors received their insignia, hat or laurel wreath, ring and diploma. Dean Johan Willander was the promotor. It was then time for the professors, four in number this time, to be installed by the Rector.

In addition to the doctors and professors, three teachers were also awarded diplomas and named excellent teachers. The Student Union awarded the Teacher of the Year prize voted for by the students.

For the first time at the University of Gävle, Nordea's Norrland Foundation awarded a scientific prize to an outstanding research achievement and the recipient was Professor Amir Rostami, for his research in criminology with a focus on gang crime, economic crime and welfare crime.

Food from the countryside

Music plays an important role in an academic ceremony. It breaks up the various moments and provides time for reflection and contemplation. This year it was the Sandviken Brass Quintet that played. During dinner, there were more upbeat tunes with the Forsbacka Chamber Choir and the cover band Midnight Express.

The dinner was characterised by good food and spiritual and personal speeches. The food consisted of variations on the landscape menus that have been developed in Sweden in recent times. Now there were samples of the regional menus from both Gästrikland and Hälsingland.

Birgitta Stymne participated

One speech that touched the dinner guests, judging by the long and warm applause, was when Susanna Stymne, Vice Chair of the University Board, spoke towards the end of the evening. She is an alumna of the University of Gävle and now works as a unit manager at AFA Insurance. Stymne is a well-known name in the history of the University of Gävle and, in fact, Susanna was able to introduce her mother Birgitta Stymne, who also attended the ceremony this year. She was the Vce-Chancellor of the university for twelve years, between 1989 and 2001. In addition, Susanna's father, Hans Stymne, worked for many years as a professor of mathematics at HiG. So for more than 30 years, there has been a Stymne at the University. Susanna Stymne continues the tradition as a member of the University Board.

In his speech at the dinner, the Governor, Per Bill, also emphasised that the University has and has had strong women as leaders, "girl power", and mentioned Birgitta Stymne, Ylva Fältholm and her predecessor Maj-Britt Johansson.

Jonas Kågström,ceremonimästare, och  studentmarskalk Tijana Skrobic.

Jonas Kågström the master of ceremonies who organised the whole ceremony together with one of the student marshals Tijana Skrobic.

Noah Linder.

One of the new doctors, Noah Linder, was congratulated afterwards.

The banquet broke up at 11pm in the large gas bell, but quite a few participants stayed for the mingling and dancing that followed.

Text: Tommy Löfgren

Marina Heiden, Morgan Persson (hedersdoktor), Annika Nilsson och Amir Rostami.

Two days before the academic ceremony, inaugural lectures were held by the new professors and honorary doctor. From left: Marina Heiden, Morgan Persson (honorary doctor), Annika Nilsson and Amir Rostami.

Rektor Ylva Fältholm, tidigare rektor Birgitta Stymne (mitten) samt Susanna Stymne Airey, vice ordförande i högskolestyrelsen.

Birgitta Stymne (centre), who was Vice-Chancellor from 1989-2001, attended the ceremony. Her daughter Susanna Stymne Airey (right) is currently Vice-Chairman of the Board of Governors and on the left is Rector Ylva Fältholm.

Honours at the Academic Ceremony 2024

At the academic ceremony at the University of Gävle in 2024, the following new doctors were conferred: Marie Bjuhr, Jimmy Munobwa, Sophie Pagard, Linda Widar, Hadi Amin, Hanna Andersson, Harald Andersson, Sandra Carlos-Pinedo, Daniel Danevad, Lea Fobbe, Ida Johansson, Noah Linder and Gottfried Weinberger.

In their absence, Mattias Bengtsson, Mattias Holmgren and Douglas MacCutheon were also promoted. Morgan Persson, CEO of Monitor ERP, was awarded an honorary doctorate. Dean Johan Willander was the promotor.

Four professors were installed by Vice-Chancellor Ylva Fältholm: Marina Heiden, Annika Nilsson, Amir Rostami, and Sofia Wikman.

At the ceremony, three excellent teachers were also awarded diplomas: Micael Cronhjort, Jörgen Holmberg and Davoud Masoumi.

The Student Union awarded the Teacher of the Year prize to Jan Sjölund. Nordea Norrlandsstiftelsen's scientific prize for 2024 was awarded to Professor Amir Rostami. The master of ceremonies was Jonas Kågström.

This page was last updated 2024-04-29