North Park University’s Swedish presence has certainly been apparent in the past, and many signs remain today ..a few were added and are ever-changing. (Scroll down for photos)

1. Swedish students
North Park University has had an increase from 18 to 57 enrolled Swedish students in two years. At the moment, the total number of Scandinavian students is 79 (57 Swedes, 18 Norwegians, four Finns).

2. Swedish-American students
North Park University enrolls many Swedish-American students, and the school offers an undergraduate Scandinavian Studies Program with a focus on Swedish culture and the Swedish language.

3. Swedish professors
Anne-Marie Andreasson-Hogg, is one of many Swedish professor at North Park University. She belongs to the Scandinavian Studies Department, and has language courses in Swedish, Danish, and Norwegian at North Park University. An exchange program with Södra Vetterbygdens Folkhögskola also brings students and professors from Sweden every spring semester.

4. The names of the buildings
Anderson Hall, Hanson Hall, Sohlberg Hall, Nyvall Hall, Burgh Hall, Carlson Tower, and Anderson Chapel are all buildings around campus named with traditionally Swedish names.

5. Psalm 111:10, “Herrens fruktan är vishetens begynnelse,” inscripted near the entrance of Old Main.
The inscription was originally suggested by 1893 board member Sven Anderson, who had originally seen it over the entrance of a school building in Sweden. It’s one of the guiding precepts of the North Park University, the English translation “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”

6. Name of the sport teams
Vikings is the name of the sports team at North Park University. The school belongs to College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin and competes against Carthage College, Illinois Wesleyan College, Milikin College, North Central College, Wheaton College, Elmhurst College, and Augustana College.

7. Soccer team
North Park’s men’s soccer team has had record high 14 Swedes and two Norwegians players on the roster. Vikings started nine Swedes and two Americans in their last match of the season. The team colors represent the traditional blue and yellow.

8. Swedish flags
The supporters of Vikings Men’s soccer, “Foster Finest” created this giant Swedish flag, and chanted in Swedish at the match against Augustana College last fall. “North Park Vikings är dem bästa… heja heja heja Vikings… “ Swedish flags can be found in student dorms all around campus.

9. Tre Kronor
Tre Kronor is a traditional Swedish restaurant across the street from North Park University. Swedish pancakes, pickled herring, norsk lax, and flaskfile, each delicious dish is served with authentic Nordic flair.

10. The Sweden Shop
The Sweden Shop is located next to Tre Kronor and sells artistic and authentic Swedish housewares, clothing, books, and more.

Text & Photo: Erik Kinnhammar

For more info on the Chicago University, see North Park University