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This year's alumni are awarded in the House of Science

Published: 19 October 2016

It is now official who receives the prestigious title of Alumnus of the Year at Luleå University of Technology. 2016 awards go to Maria Ågren, Director General of the Swedish Transport Agency, and Olov Renberg, one of the founder of BehavioSec who developed security systems for some of the world's largest banks.

Alumnus of the Year Award is awarded to individuals who were once students at Luleå University of Technology and after graduation reached particularly great success in their careers. The awards ceremony takes place on November 8 at the House of Science in Luleå, when Maria Agren and Olov Renberg during festive and solemn forms will receive the award of Johan Sterte, Vice- Chancellor at Luleå University of Technology.

Olov Renberg, 34, now lives in Stockholm but is originally from Harads in Norrbotten. He studied Bachelor Programme in International Business Administration at Luleå University of Technology 2002-2005 and then began as a project manager at Idéhuset, which aimed to help students to entrepreneurship. At the same time, he co-founded the company BehavioSec.

- I'm very proud to become Alumnus at Luleå University of Technology. It's overwhelming! It shows that people believe in what we do, says Olov Renberg, who today is chief operating officer of BehavioSec.

BehavioSec is an IT security company that deals with biometrics; to analyze a user's behavior on the screen to verify the person's identity. BehavioSec develops security systems for companies such as US military and several of the world's largest banks and has offices in Sweden, England, Holland, Germany, Hong Kong and the United States.

Olov Renberg says that training in International Business Administrations at Luleå University of Technology has given him great tools for his career.

- I've really got to me the basics to be able to write a business plan, creating projects, build a brand and come out on the international market. It is much what you do when running companies.

Maria Agren, 53, lives in Norrköping, was born in Gällivare, raised in Härnösand and then moved to Luleå for studies at Luleå University of Technology, where she she took a degree in civil engineering.

Maria Agren has been Director General of several significant expert authorities in Sweden, the Swedish Geotechnical Institute, SMHI, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and now the Swedish Transport Agency. The education at Luleå University of Technology gave her interest and knowledge of sustainable technological development of society and has been a very good basis for her work at the state administration, where much of her work today is about business development and dialogue internally and externally. Dialogue is often between individuals, industries, government agencies and government representatives.

Maria Agren is currently a member of the University Board at Luleå University of Technology and therefore follows the University's work and development ongoing. She has previously been involved in various educational projects at the university and in the mentoring program for researchers. She hopes that she as rewarder of  Alumnus of the Year will give students at Luleå University of Technology a positive picture of what they can choose to focus on after graduation.

- I think it is just great to get this award, to be remembered by one´s university in this way, says Maria Ågren.

Olov Renberg hope that he as one of the year's alumni can help to inspire and encourage students to dare to pursue their business ideas. Luleå and Norrbotten is close to his heart and he visits Luleå University of Technpology quite often.

- When werepresent the company, we are always talking about Luleå. When British bankers visit Luleå, it is awesome to be able to show them all the snow and be able to just pointing out and say "Take a look overhere, this is Facebook's data center."

Jennie Hägg Wilhelmsson

Jennie Hägg Wilhelmsson, Head of Division

Phone: +46 (0)920 491746
Organisation: Student Affairs, Professional Support