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Snorri Scholarships 2023

Updated: May 3, 2023

Introducing six Snorri scholarship recipients that will be travelling to Iceland this summer for a life-changing cultural experience.

It’s always an exciting time of year when Icelandic Roots announces the recipients of the Snorri scholarships. Each year scholarships are offered for participants in the Snorri Program, a unique five-week summer cultural program for young adults 20-30 years of age who live in Canada and the US. The applicants of Icelandic descent desire to learn about their Icelandic heritage and ancestry. Previous participants have attested to having a life-changing experience. In fact, 600 people have participated in the various Snorri Programs over the past 20 years.

Icelandic Roots has contributed $10,000 to the Snorri program in 2023, including these scholarships and general program support. These contributions from Icelandic Roots are made possible by our many members through their annual memberships and their donations.

Introducing our 2023 Snorri Scholarship participants:

Caitlin Evelynn Beth Armstrong (I753245) lives in The Pas, Manitoba, Canada. Working towards a degree in medical imaging, she fills her spare time playing her fiddle and teaching others. As an accomplished fiddler, in 2019 and 2022 Caitlin placed in the top twenty at the Canadian Grand Masters’ Fiddling Championships. She enjoys curling, badminton, and swimming.

Emily Marja Gudbjartson (I729684) lives in Dauphin Manitoba, Canada. Emily is currently studying nursing at Brandon University, partly influenced by her previous work as a laboratory assistant, a pharmacy clerk, and a caregiver. When she has spare time, she enjoys the arts of music and painting. Her love of the outdoors takes her on many adventures, including swimming, where she also teaches children with disabilities. Although Emily has never been to Iceland, she has been to Gimli with her family many times and has taken an Icelandic course. Her great-grandmother has been a strong influence introducing Emily to all things Icelandic.

Jared Hanson: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023
Jared Hanson: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023

Jared John Hanson (I49266) currently lives in Maple Grove, Minnesota, USA. After graduating this Spring with a degree in Economics, Jared will be relocating to Chicago working as a consultant and analyst with the health sector. His studies are augmented with recent work as an assistant consultant and an apprentice in risk assessment and accounting. When not providing financial advice, Jared enjoys music, reading, basketball, baseball, and skiing.

Emma Kaliel: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023
Emma Kaliel: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023

Emma Kathleen Kaliel (I756208) hails from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Emily is graduating this spring with a degree in civil engineering from the University of Alberta. As a hockey player with a keen interest in photography, she is presented with opportunities to take action shots for friends. In her spare time, she is seen reading or cross-stitching, and dreams of writing a novel.

Julia Swanson: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023
Julia Swanson: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023

Julia Marie Swanson (I283601) resides in Fergus Falls, Minnesota, USA. Julia will soon to be a graduate with a BA in Communication Sciences and Disorders, with a master’s program to follow. When not studying, Julia enjoys a variety of activities including painting, sewing, crocheting, singing, and travelling. Some of her volunteer work includes teaching Sunday school and singing at church, as well as caring for families in long-term care homes.

Hendrik Vis: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023
Hendrik Vis: Snorri Scholarship Recipient 2023

Hendrik Peter Vis (I759178) resides in Narol, Manitoba, Canada. Hendrik works as a plumbing apprentice. In his spare time, Hendrik enjoys hiking, kayaking, and diving. To relax, he enjoys watching football (soccer) and relaxing in hot tubs. His interest in history drives his desire to further his studies and travel to Europe and Asia. He is an animal lover, especially of dogs.

The Snorri group will be in Iceland from June 10th until July 15th where their experience is divided into a three-phased program.

Their adventures begin on their arrival in the early morning hours. After a short drive from Keflavik airport to Reykjavik, the Snorris will settle into their hostel followed by an afternoon orientation and a group dinner. The next two weeks will be filled with cultural and educational programs at the University of Iceland: Icelandic language, history, folklore, politics, and personal genealogy, all enhanced with museum visits and tours. They will also be participating in Iceland’s National Day celebrations on June 17th.

in the second phase, called the “Homestays”, the Snorri participants will move in with their host family. They could be spending time on a farm, in a fishing village, or a small town. In these locations, they will assume similar duties and activities to what a young local Icelander would be doing.

The third and final phase includes adventure tours around Iceland, learning more about its nature, history, and culture. Much awaits them while they discover the best Iceland has to offer.

Over a month of activities culminate on Friday, July 14th when the Snorri participants return to Reykjavík for their final presentations and graduation dinner. The next day it is homeward bound with hearts full and stories to be shared.

Congratulations to all Snorri scholarship recipients. Wishing all a safe journey and best wishes. We look forward to hearing about your trip and connections you have with your own Icelandic roots.


Email us your questions or join the conversation on our Facebook Group.

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