Tove Bang is a 5 year student at KTH (Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm) studying Media Technology. She is originally from Kristiansand, in southern Norway and currently the group leader of Computers for Schools.
Eric: You are in Stockholm for over 2 years now. What was your intention of coming here to Sweden?
Tove: The program I am currently studying was not available in Norway but here at KTH. Besides living Sweden as a Norwegian does not come with to many cultural or social differences so I ventured the move here.
Eric: What was the original thought for you to start in Engineers without borders (EWB)?
Tove: In the back of my head I always considered joining a group and the combination of technology and education was very appealing to me.
Eric: The project was started about 2 years ago but it fell apart again. Why did you decide to revive it?
Tove: When the project stopped a lot of EWB's members were disappointed because they would have liked to see the project working out, being the first project focusing on technology. I was the first one to show interest, and therefore took on the responsibility of leading the group, even though Dan has been involved from the beginning.
Eric: And what kind of tasks come by in the position as the group leader?
Tove: Mostly I do administrative work which involves lots of mail conversation, let it be with the EWB team here at KTH, the national group and members in Cameroon or the NGO cooperating with us in Bandja. Additionally I help out in the different groups we split our group into. For me taking the leader position in the project was like shooting in the dark, and something completely new to me, and even though it's hard and I do mistakes now and then in the end everything works out. That is with good support from you, the group members and from other people in EWB. It's a great challenge and experience, and as long as you have the right motivation, it's something that everyone can do.
Eric: In Year 2017 we can assume that most people own smart phones. Why do you still think that the students in Bandja need access to computers?
Tove: The project's goals and values correspond a lot with my personal view about the topic. I believe that getting access to computers in your education is something that can improve the quality of the education drastically. When only using smart phones for communication and entertainment people tend to quickly end up in filter bubbles, only being active on social media like Snapchat and Facebook. But the Internet is such an important source of knowledge and has so much more to provide, so I think that the key is to introduce technology through education, and teach information evaluation and gathering of knowledge.
Eric: Alright that gave us a good overview about you as a person. But one last important thing to clarify: A stereotype about Norwegians is their high consumption of fish - how much do you usually eat per week ?
Tove: Well, that's hard to say but I might be a bad Norwegian regarding this. I think around 2 portions per week.