For this week’s blog, we’re meeting with student, Katrin Eyjolfdottir, who’s in her first term at GGU. Katrin joined us from Iceland where she’d been working for a couple of years as a flight attendant on Iceland Air after completing her Bachelor’s in psychology at the University of Reykjavik.
Katrin is now in the Industrial-Organizational Psychology Master’s program, something she’d always wanted to study as it married her two passions, psychology and business. She looked at similar programs around her native Scandinavia, but eventually decided to come to GGU. She hopes that her interest in the human side of business will enable her to learn theories and practical interventions to make employees feel better about themselves.
But Katrin’s interests aren’t limited to the classroom….in her free time, she loves partying in the Castro and dining out in Hayes Valley. Her favorite dish is the Pad Thai at Thai Thai in California Street and she loves playing Bocce Ball at Bar Bocce in Sausalito. When she needs a break, she goes running – often to the Palace of Fine Arts – where she says she finds a sense of both calm and adventure. Breakfast is at ‘Split’ on Polk Street and her bucket list travel destinations include Big Sur and the Napa Valley.
Her seminal San Francisco moment came when she went to see the city’s ballet. As a former ballerina, she was in awe of living in the same place as one of the world’s top three ballet companies. She also loves to walk the city, and seeing offices for companies such as Google and Pinterest, gives her inspiration and purpose and reinforces her decision that moving here, to do this course, was the right one.
But it hasn’t been all plain sailing. When she first started here, she found the linguistics and academics difficult to adapt to. In Iceland, students are expected to listen and take notes, whereas her classes here are much more participative. Initially, she found this intimidating, but now she realizes how helpful it’s been. She understands that everyone’s in the same position and she’s been well supported. She believes that being required to speak up regularly has increased her confidence and she’s now excited to go to class.
Leaving Iceland and moving to California has meant leaving friends and loved ones behind, but Katrin’s not as homesick as she thought she might be. She knows she’s in the right place, she’s ready to be here and she truly believes that she’s found herself here at GGU and in this program. If you see Katrin around campus, say ‘hi’ – we’re lucky to have her!