Astrid Fehling, Academic Director
Astrid Fehling is originally from Hamburg, Germany, but has lived in Iceland since 2010. She came to Iceland as a part-time student of the master’s program in coastal and marine management at the University Center of the Westfjords, the host institution to the SIT Study Abroad program in Iceland, and has been consistently involved with the university center among others as an instructor of the program’s annual Geographical Information Systems course.
Astrid holds a bachelor's degree in geography from the University of Bremen, Germany, and a master’s degree in environmental management from the University of Kiel, Germany. Her interdisciplinary training has been reflected in her work across a varied spectrum of fields and functions, including scientific research, education, and tourism.
Astrid enjoys exploring nature and culture through outdoor activities and travel. Her passions are linked to her interests in the natural and environmental sciences. She looks forward to sharing exciting academic and field-based experiences with her students.
View Astrid's complete CV.
Lecturers may include:
Dr. Brynhildur Davidsdottir, Lecturer on Resource Economics and Policy
Dr. Davidsdottir is an associate professor of environment and natural resources at the University of Iceland and director of the graduate program in environment and natural resources. Additionally, Dr. Davidsdottir is an advisor to the Icelandic government on the issue of climate change mitigation and is the appointed chair of the government committee that oversees greenhouse gas mitigation in Iceland. Before joining the University of Iceland in 2006, Dr. Davidsdottir was an associate at Abt Associates Inc. in Cambridge, Massachusetts; a lecturer at Boston University; and a senior research associate at University of Maryland, College Park.
Much of her research has focused on complex systems modeling of energy and environmental policy issues, such as regional responses within the United States to various climate change policy options and the impact of those responses on the natural environment, dynamic modeling of energy transitions, and development of indicators for sustainable energy development.
Dr. S. David Dvorak, Lecturer on Hydrogen Fuel Cells and Alternative Energy
Dr. Dvorak is a professor of mechanical engineering technology at the University of Maine and coordinator of the Fuel Cell Systems and Hydrogen Specialization at RES, the School for Renewable Energy Sciences in Akureyri, Iceland. A Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Dvorak has worked with fuel cell projects in Europe and the USA. He received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1981 and 1982 respectively, and a PhD in physics from the University of Maine in 1998. From 2000 to 2007 he served as director of the University of Maine’s School of Engineering Technology. Dr. Dvorak is also a licensed professional engineer and began working on alternative energy applications more than 20 years ago, investigating the use of biomass-derived fuels for industrial gas turbines at GE Aircraft Engines in Cincinnati, Ohio. Dr. Dvorak’s current interests include fuel cell applications using liquid renewable fuels, control of fuel cell power systems, and innovative polymer electrolyte fuel cell membranes.
Dr. Jónas Eliasson, Lecturer on Hydropower
Dr. Elíasson has been a researcher and professor for more than four decades. He is currently a professor of civil engineering at the University of Iceland and head of the hydrology concentration for The School for Renewable Energy Science in Akureyri. Dr. Elíasson also has taught at the Technical University of Denmark and has been a visiting scholar at Stanford University, the University of Washington (Seattle), and the University of California (Santa Barbara). He received his MS and PhD from the Technical University of Denmark. His areas of research include fluid mechanics, environmental engineering, hydrology, coastal engineering, and water power. For twenty years, Dr. Elíasson worked for the National Power Company of Iceland as a hydropower consultant on optimization, flow resistance, groundwater problems, and ice problems.
Ólafur Guðsteinn Kristjánsson, Icelandic Instructor
Ólafur Guðsteinn Kristjánsson is an Icelandic lecturer and translator. He received his BA in comparative literature in 2004 from the University of Iceland. Since 2005, he has lived in Berlin, Germany, where he studied philosophy and German literature and is teaching Icelandic at various German schools. Ólafur has also worked as a translator and a freelance journalist for Morgunblaðið and other Icelandic newspapers and magazines. Since 2010, Ólafur has been teaching the summer Icelandic language and culture courses at the University Centre of the Westfjords. He has extensive experience teaching groups, from beginner to advanced levels.