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Clarkson's Kathryn Johnson Honored By Lulea University, Sweden
Potsdam, N.Y.– Clarkson University's Executive Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations Kathryn Johnson was recently honored at a ceremony at Lulea University in Sweden. The occasion was the opening of "Utgangspunkten"–literally translated, this means the Starting Point–the new career development center at Lulea University, and one of the first of its kind in Sweden. As Johnson herself mentioned, she is seen as "the mother of the career center."
Johnson, formerly the executive director of Clarkson's Career Development, is also responsible for the Study Abroad Program at Clarkson. When the exchange with Lulea University first started four years ago, she visited the university. During one of her meetings with Dr. Ingegerd Palmer, president of Lulea University, Johnson mentioned Clarkson's Career Development Center and Palmer immediately became interested, since this was something unheard of in Sweden at the time. At that point, Palmer declared, "We are going to start a career development center here as well;" and she meant what she said. During the start-up process a team of administrators and students visited Clarkson and some other U.S. universities to look at student services and to get a feel for how this could be adapted to Sweden.
Now, four years later, Palmer's dream has become reality. The Starting Point was duly opened with a formal program, followed by a ribbon cutting ceremony and reception at the new center. Johnson was honored as being the catalyst who made it all happen by bringing this idea to Palmer's attention. Johnson spoke at the reception and congratulated Lulea on being one of the first universities in Sweden to provide these types of services to its students.
Johnson was pleased with her visit to Sweden and also had the opportunity to meet with Erika Hedblom and Erik Nilsson, two of the Swedish exchange students who spent last year at Clarkson. She said that it was gratifying to see her vocation coming to life in another country.