An American in Oslo – Week 2

The Second Week

Monday of Week Two marked the start of our internships – a milestone I was exceedingly nervous about until around 15 minutes after I walked through the door and realized that everyone was nice and very knowledgeable and passionate about their work. As each student’s hours needed to total at least 90 by the end of the months and we only needed to work from Monday to Thursday, every individual had a vastly different schedule. Our supervisors were also very flexible in terms of time of arrival/departure, an approach which is quite common in the Norwegian workplace. My assignments were varied – website expansion, social media, research, graphic design, translation – and the method of execution for each of them veered sharply toward a “Learn by Doing” approach, which I found greatly beneficial. As one of my main goals for the trip was to improve my ability with the Norwegian language, I attempted to use English around the office as little as possible. However, I’d like to emphasize that proficiency in Norwegian is not a requirement for studying in Norway; there are many universities that offer full Bachelor’s or Master’s programs in English.

On the activity side of things, Saturday was my roommate’s birthday, and so we attended a showing of the play Oslo at Det Norske Teatret at her request. The entire play was in Nynorsk – one of two official written forms of Norwegian, the other being Bokmål – and centered around the signing of the 1990 Oslo Peace Accords between Israel and Palestine. It was interesting, especially from a linguistic perspective, as Nynorsk is not commonly taught in American Norwegian classes.

Sorry about the lack of pictures; most of this week was work-focused, so I didn’t think to take any until the very end. There will be more next week, so check back then!