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Passion, dream, and reality

My journey from Ethiopia to Sweden.


Hello and welcome to my blog!


My name is Aster Demeke-Hansson, and I am an IT enthusiast who has lived in Sweden since 1989. In this blog I will share my life story, my passion for computer technology, my dream to study and work in IT the sector, and my everyday life as an immigrant in a new country. I will also write about why I want to invest in online education. What makes my education unique and what is the driving force. I hope you will find it exciting and motivating to follow my journey from Ethiopia to Sweden.


I am originally from Ethiopia, a country that has suffered from political instability, poverty, and war for many years. I grew up under a military dictatorship that oppressed the people and limited their freedom and opportunities. I had a high school education, but I saw no future for me or my little daughter in my home country. I decided to flee to Sweden, a country that I had not only heard of as a democratic, peaceful, and prosperous country, but that had also built the high school I attended in Ethiopia. The school was a collaborative project between Sweden and Ethiopia through the organization ESBU (Elementary School Building Unit) which was part of SIDA (Swedish International Development Agency).


I came to Sweden for the first time in February 1988, in the middle of winter. I was greeted by a country covered in snow like a white cotton carpet. It was a great contrast to the warm and pleasant climate of Addis Ababa. It was also a big challenge to adapt to the new country, the new culture, and the new language. I didn't know a word of Swedish when I came here. I felt alienated and alone, but I was also expectant, curious, and ambitious.


I signed up for an SFI language course to learn Swedish as quickly as possible. At school I met many other immigrants from different countries who had similar experiences to me. We quickly became friends, and we helped each other communicate with our teachers and each other. We also had a lot of fun together. We did different activities such as going on excursions, baking, cooking, and eating together. We not only learned Swedish but also about each other's cultures and traditions.


After six months I had reached a good level of Swedish, and I wanted to start working to gain more practical experience of Swedish society and working life. I applied for a job as a cleaning lady at a Scandic hotel near where I lived. I got the job and I worked there for a year. I learned a lot about customer service, cleaning, and hotel business. I also made many new friends and contacts among my colleagues.


I enjoyed my job, but I also felt that I wanted to continue my education and develop my skills. I had always been technically interested and I wanted to learn more about computers and computer communications. I applied to various IT courses, but I needed to complete my high school education in order to qualify. I studied at Komvux for three years and took courses such as Swedish, mathematics, English, social studies, business economics, accounting, computer-aided accounting, IT support, word processing, database administration, computer knowledge, computer communication, IT coordination, local networks A and B, personal computer.


During my time at Komvux, I also worked on weekends and evenings in healthcare. It was a profession for which I have great respect and for which I feel and hope that Sweden continues to take care of the elderly in a dignified way even in such economic crises as we are having now. I learned a lot about care, empathy, and communication by working with older people. I also got to see how important it is to have a social network and a meaningful occupation as you get older.


I often compared the situation for the elderly in Sweden with the situation for the elderly in Ethiopia. In my home country, most people cannot afford loving care and other things necessary for them. There are not enough hospitals, doctors, medicines, or pensions for them. Many suffer from disease, malnutrition, and poverty. But most elderly people live with or near their children or relatives if they have neither. Neighbours and people, they know take care of them. Many fights until their last breath and often have a rich social community.


There are pros and cons to both systems. In Sweden, the elderly have more financial security, better health care, and more independence. But they can also feel lonely, isolated, and redundant. In Ethiopia, the elderly have more family ties, community, and respect. But they can also feel dependent, vulnerable, and suffering.


I think the best would be to combine the best of both worlds. To give the elderly both loving care and care, both financial security and social belonging, both independence and respect. That is what I wish for all the elderly in the world, no matter where they live or where they come from.


When I had passed all my courses at Komvux with an overall high school grade, I was finally admitted to an IT education that I had dreamed of. It was the Eikness and Vallin institute that I read when I had my first dream of being certified by Microsoft fulfilled. I passed MCP in Windows NT 4.5 and MSCE in Windows 2000. I was overjoyed and proud to have reached my goal.


This is just the beginning of my journey from Ethiopia to Sweden. In the next post I will tell you about how I got my first job in the IT industry, how I met my husband who is Swedish, who came to Ethiopia to marry me and bring us to Sweden, and how we have built our life lived together 10 years. I hope you will continue to read about my journey and that you may also want to share your own journey in the comments. Thanks for reading my blog!

How I became a network technician at Fyrisskolan.

I studied hard and learned all about networking, servers, security, protocols, routing, switching and much more. I also did an internship at Gävle Dat and gained valuable work experience.

After I graduated, I got a job as a network technician at an IT company. In 2002 I started working as a network technician at Fyrisskolan in Uppsala until 2009. Fyrisskolan is one of the largest high schools in Uppsala with over 2000 students and 300 staff. The school had a large and complex network consisting of a Novell oh Windows NT server environment and several hundred computers, printers, scanners, projectors, and other equipment that are connected to the Internet and each other.

My task as a network technician, was to ensure that student and staff computers in the network work smoothly and safely. I was responsible for installing, configuring, maintaining, and troubleshooting the network equipment and software. I also help students and staff with various IT-related questions and problems. We were 4 colleagues who worked together.


Why am I writing this blog?

Firstly, I want to share my experiences with others who are in the same situation that I have been through. I know how difficult it can be to move to a new country, learn a new language, adapt to a new culture, study and work while trying to keep in touch with your country of origin. I want to inspire others who have similar dreams as I had to not give up but to fight for their goals.

In addition, the IT profession is a constant learning process that requires sufficient interest and desire to reach one's goal. I am fascinated by the rapid development in the IT industry and the opportunities it offers. I want to stay updated on the latest trends and technologies and share my knowledge with my readers.

Finally, I write this blog to develop my writing skills and get feedback from others. I find it fun and challenging to write about IT-related topics in a way that is easy to understand and interesting to read.

I hope you like my blog and leave your comments and questions.

I also want to hear from you who read my blog. What do you think of my content? Do you have any questions or comments? Do you have any tips or suggestions for what I should write about next? Feel free to leave a comment below or contact me via email or social media. You can also subscribe to my newsletter to get updates on new posts.

Aster Demke-Hansson

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