Meet Our Team

Our Team

Administration - U.S.


Ken Wagner

Founder & Executive Director

Education: Ph.D. in Sociology, in 1982 from the University of Pittsburgh

As Executive Director, I oversee all aspects of our Program both in the U.S. and in Stockholm.

I started The Swedish Program while I was a professor at Hamilton College in 1987. I first went to Stockholm in 1984 to do research on workplace democracy at Swedish companies, such as Volvo, Ericsson, Saab, and Electrolux.

I sincerely believe that studying abroad is a transformative experience. Our students are fortunate to study in a country that practices the values of global citizenship: tolerance, diversity, solidarity, and international understanding.

My hobbies include golf, gardening, and food. I am an avid Red Sox, Celtics and Buffalo Bills fan (I’m from Buffalo so I had no choice).

portrait_12Alison Gluck

Program Administrator

I’m responsible for all work related to the acceptance of students, program bookkeeping, coordinating all communication with our staff in Stockholm regarding acceptance, housing, arrivals, and any other issues that may arise. I also assist in the recruitment of our students.

Prior to working for the Program, I owned and operated a child daycare for fifteen years. I have obtained an Associate Degree in Office Technology and a Bachelor Degree in Communications.

I enjoy family time, skiing, exercising, soccer, vacationing, and just relaxing by the poolside in the summer months.


Élen Rhoades Kidd

Coordinator for Admissions and Alumni Relations

I was a Program student in the spring of 2002 and have been in love with Sweden ever since! I started working for the Program in 2006.

Much of my job is traveling to colleges and universities around the country and speaking with students about studying with us in Stockholm. One of the best parts of my job is not only getting students excited about The Swedish Program, but also traveling to Stockholm to help our newest students get acclimated to life in Sweden. I also work in Alumni Relations and really enjoy being in touch with our former students – it is incredibly rewarding to hear how a semester or year with The Swedish Program has made such an impact on so many lives!

I graduated from Grinnell College with a degree in Psychology in 2003. After two years working in a Montessori school in the Twin Cities, I found my way back to Sweden to study massage for one year. I currently reside in Minneapolis with my husband, two sons, and our dog, Riggins.

My hobbies include almost anything involving the outdoors – camping, hiking, canoeing, kayaking, soccer, running, biking, adventure racing, and cross-country skiing. In 2008, I completed a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail – one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my life! I love reading, marathon-ing TV series with my husband, and listening to music, especially old-time and bluegrass, and am a novice banjo player.

Our Team

Administration - Stockholm

carinaCarina Kamb Deiaco

Head of Administration

I have been with the program since 1989, except for the five years I lived in Luxembourg. I was initially our Housing Coordinator responsible for finding our host families.

I then became Program Coordinator organizing most Program functions and activities. I was also responsible for finding our apartments. I am now Head of Administration. In this role, I am responsible for all Program administrative and organizational work except for the academic side of the Program.

I really enjoy my job, especially working with our students. Every student has his or her own little quirk. It is fun meeting many different personalities. And, of course, I find it very rewarding helping our students adjust to a new culture and the Swedish way of doing things.

In terms of interests and hobbies, I enjoy family activities, traveling, yoga, and wine. I also am good at sports, especially throwing the ax!! You must join us for our Gotland trip to see for yourself!

aleksandraAleksandra Bujacz

Director of Studies

As Director of Studies, my main role is to serve as an academic adviser to students and Chair of the Faculty.

I teach the course on Work Psychology. I became a psychologist as a result of my strong interest in human nature, especially in the power of individual agency and freedom.

In 2009, I earned my Master’s degree with a major in work and organizational psychology at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poland. Currently, I am a visiting researcher at Stockholm University studying motivation and engagement in creative work. I received my Ph.D. in Psychology in August, 2017 from Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany.

Personal Trivia/Hobbies:
I have travelled around Europe on my motorcycle. 14 000 km and 11 countries in 38 days at the cost of 1 broken motorcycle chain (I also have a passion for numbers).

Caitlin Hawley

Program Coordinator

My goal is to help students get the most out of their experience in Sweden. I recruit our host and contact families, develop local partnerships, plan events, and help students navigate everyday life in Stockholm.

I’m originally from Milwaukee, WI, where I earned my master’s degree in Sociology and worked at a research center helping nonprofits evaluate and improve their programs. Since moving to Stockholm in 2012, I’ve provided communication services to researchers through my own firm.

In my free time, I enjoy taking my poodle Nelson to the dog park, going out to eat, and reading. I’m also a Vice President for the American Women’s Club of Stockholm, where I organize monthly events and co-founded a group that helps younger members connect.

Eric Röst

Program Coordinator

I work part time at the Swedish Program to assist our Program Coordinator, Caitlin Hawley, with administrative tasks and to help students get the most out of their Swedish experience. I am also employed by SSE as department secretary at the Center for Modern Languages.

I live for cultural exchange! I earned my MA degree in Peace and Conflict Research from Uppsala University in 2015. Leading up to that I did my BA in International and Comparative Politics at the American University of Paris. I have previously worked with children’s rights in Uganda and as a human rights observer in Hebron, Palestine.

In my free time, I enjoy outdoor activities, cooking, and going to museums and exhibitions. I am active in the Swedish Red Cross, where I visit migrants in detention and help run a shelter for vulnerable EU-migrants. I am also a member of the national Red Cross crisis support group.

Our Team


karlKarl Berglund


I teach the course on Swedish Crime Fiction.

MA in Library and Information Studies, Borås University College (June 2010)
Ph. Licentiate in Comparative Literature, Uppsala University (November 2014)

Since 2011, I am a PhD student in comparative literature at Uppsala University. My thesis concerns the boom in Swedish crime fiction in the 2000s and its connections to Swedish society and book trade. So far, I have published two books within the project: “Deckarboomen under lupp” (Crime Boom Investigated, 2012) and “Mordförpackningar” (Packaging Murder, 2016). My thesis will be completed in spring 2017.

Research interests:
Sociology of literature, crime fiction, popular fiction, cultural studies, publishing studies, book history, gender studies.

I live with my fiancée and our 11 months old daughter in Bagarmossen, south of Stockholm. I love cross-country skiing and during the winter I try to engage in this activity as much as I can. I also like running, hiking and all other possible ways of spending time in the nature. I like reading (no surprise) and listening to music, and I play the saxophone in an unknown pop band.

Personal Trivia:
I once played an extra in the German TV-production “Inga Lindström”, that portrays idyllic and typically Swedish milieus and activities, such as the archipelago, red wooden cottages and midsummer’s festivities.

jonasJonas Brodin


I teach the following courses on the Program: The Theory and History of Radical Politics; Crime and Punishment in Sweden and the U.S.; Health Care in Sweden and the U.S.; Comparative Public Policy: The Swedish Model in the 21st Century; Comparative Public Policy: Europe and the EU; Comparative Perspectives on Migration: Europe and the U.S.

B.A., Political Science, University of Hawaii, 1997
Ph.D., Political Science, University of Maryland, 2004

Current Research Interests:
I study how the built environment molds relations of power. This happens in many different ways: in how the space itself is configured—for example, with walls that separate one group from another—as well as in how the space is monitored or how resources or people are distributed within the space. My current project uses the specific case of roads to look at the relationship between built space and power.

I enjoy hiking and camping, and generally spending time in the great outdoors. And since I feel more at home in water than on land, I also try to spend as much time as I can in water—primarily swimming, but also kayaking, fishing, and doing other watersports.

Personal Trivia:
I once got second place in a completely rigged sports/trivia/beauty pageant competition for a variety show on British television.

pederPeder Fallenius


I teach the course on History of Modern Scandinavian Art and Architecture.

I am a Ph D in art history and presented my thesis May 24 2003 at Department of Art History at University of Uppsala.

Current Research Interests:
20th century architecture has been my main research interest ever since I wrote my thesis and it still is.

I have a great passion for music resulting in an ever expanding record collection and a longing to revisit the jazz clubs of Downtown Manhattan.

thomasThomas Lavelle


I teach the course on Writing Sweden.

I earned my PhD in English from Stockholm University with a dissertation on syntax and semantics. I prepared for that with graduate studies at University College London and the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.

Current Research Interests:
Over the years my teaching and research interests have varied, but I’ve always enjoyed writing courses—academic, professional, creative. At SSE, I teach business English and management communication along with some faculty-development courses aimed at helping my colleagues develop as classroom teachers. My research has moved around as well, and now my focus is on multilingual academic writers using English as a lingua franca.

I am currently Director, Center for Modern Languages, Stockholm School of Economics.

In my free time I write poetry, enjoy the outdoors, and of course, follow the local teams that I grew up with, the Pittsburgh Pirates, Steelers, and Penguins.

pehrjohanPehr-Johan Norbäck


I teach the course on The Economics of European Integration

Graduated in 1998 with the thesis, Multinational Firms, Technology and Location at the Department of Economics at Stockholm University. I joined the Research Institute of Industrial Economics (Institutet för Näringslivsforskning, IfN) and was appointed docent in 2004.

Current Research Interests:
I have done extensive research on foreign direct investments and multinational firms. In recent years, my research has also been directed towards how new innovations emerge from the interaction of entrepreneurs, venture capital, and incumbent firms, and how private equity firms affect industrial restructuring.

I like to do sports like soccer and badminton. I am – at least, according to myself – a very good guitar player.

Elena Paltseva


I teach the course on Energy and Environmental Economics.


PhD in Economics, Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden   2006
Visiting Graduate Student, Department of Economics, Princeton University, USA 2003 – 2004
Master in Economics, New Economic School, Moscow, Russia  1998
M.Sc. in Mathematics and Applied Mathematics, Moscow State University, Russia 1996

My main research interests are political economics and applied microeconomics. I am also interested in resource and energy economics, in particular, from the political economics perspective.  My recent work includes empirical investigation on the relationship between resource rents and political rent capture in different institutional environments, as well as empirical studies on the energy security issues with a particular focus on the EU-Russia relationship.

Currently I am an Assistant Professor at Stockholm Institute of Transition Economics (SITE) at Stockholm School of Economics, and a Visiting Professor in Economics at the New Economic School, Russia.


Besides economics, I enjoy dancing (mostly salsa, but also some argentine tango, etc.), art, and good company.

marieMarie Gustafsson Sendén


I teach the course on Language, Cognition, and Social Behavior.


B.A., Psychology, Stockholm University 2000
Ph.D., Psychology, Stockholm University, 2014

Current Research Interests:
I study how language is related to social evaluations and cognition. For example – do pronoun use involve self- and group serving motivations. What types of semantic markers are associated with gender stereotypes and how do these markers affect evaluations? I’m also involved in organizational studies work environment, career and health.

Current and Recent Positions:
Senior Lecturer at Stockholm University, Department of Psychology
Researcher at Stockholm University, Department of Psychology
Guest researcher, Bern University, Department of Psychology
Lecturer, Södertörn University
Researcher at Karolinska Institute
HR-manager JG Communication

On an everyday basis I enjoy cooking. Cooking after work is excellent relaxation for me – and I find planning, as well as shopping and preparing food to be fun and creative. In the summer time I play golf and rest in the Archipelago.

Camilla Sveréus


I teach the Swedish Language courses.


Languages are my passion and I have a degree from the Language Program at Uppsala University that includes Spanish, Swedish, French and general linguistics.

Current Research Interests

My other great passion is traveling and getting to know other cultures, which has led me to study and work several times in Spain, work a year in France, and go backpacking in Asia and Latin America. I have taught Swedish as a foreign language since 2011 at quite a few different places, including the universities of Stockholm, Uppsala, and Lille in northern France. I have also done some freelance work editing texts and creating Swedish subtitles for English language TV shows. But teaching is what I like best, because I love my language and enjoy helping others discover it. Also, my students always teach me a lot as well: about their cultures, and about the Swedish language by means of tricky questions!


In my free time I like singing, dancing, spending time in nature, cooking and eating. I do get hungry a lot (you will see me with a banana between classes). This is somewhat problematic when I go traveling – as is my terrible sense of direction. Please don’t ask me how to get anywhere (unless it is to practice your Swedish)!

Hellen Vergoossen


I teach the course on The Psychology of Sex and Gender.


Originally from the Netherlands, I completed my BA in Applied Psychology at the Fontys University in Eindhoven in 2011. After working in research for a few years I completed a MA in Psychology at Stockholm University in 2015.

Current Research Interests

I am currently working on my PhD thesis on the influence of gender-neutral language on person perception. More specifically, I’m interested in how gender-neutral language influences the way we perceive and remember others and whether it affects the stereotypes we associate with them. I am interested in language from a psychological perspective; the way we use language, how language affects the stereotypes we have, and whether language could be a tool to help reduce inequalities in society.

I am also interested in the processes underlying the way we experience language and am for example involved in a study using eye-tracking to catch a glimpse of the processes at work when reading texts with gender-neutral language.

Other interests

I am very passionate about reading (very broadly, both fiction and non-fiction), enjoy playing tabletop games, and I also mountainbike and geocache in my free time.

Maja Wall


I teach the course on The Psychology of Sex and Gender.


I am currently a Ph.D. student at Karolinska Institutet, Dept. Neurobiology, Care Science and Society
B.A., Psychology, Stockholm University, 2012
MSc., Psychology, Stockholm University, 2014

Current Research

My field of interest is within social psychology and I am involved in research on physicians’ health, where my focus has been to look at harassment and inequality at work and how such experiences may affect health.

Alongside my research, I have a background in statistics and quantitative research at Stockholm University. This is a part of my job that I really enjoy! Not everyone finds statistics easy, and my motto is that no one will leave for the day without having learned at least one new thing.

I find every group of students unique and the group dynamics that develop during a semester can be fascinating, especially to a social psychologist such as myself.

Hobbies and other interests

I always enjoy a day outside, preferably with my running shoes on. In case of bad weather, I enjoy a good book or a magazine on interior design. Also, with a partner from Chile, I am currently dedicating much free time to learn Spanish.