by Päivi Stenroos
In this article we ask the Edunation experts Peter Vesterbacka and Harri Suominen some essential questions about studying in Finland. Edunation is a Tampere-based company that helps students to gain world-class education and careers abroad.
Because it is in the middle of everything. “Look at the bigger picture!” urges Peter Vesterbacka, Advisor at Edunation. Finland has an outstanding location: Europe on one side, Asia on the other, five billion people altogether. Moreover, with the new Ambitious Africa initiative supported by governments and run by youth, we are also bringing Africa and Nordics closer.
“Finland is the heart of Eurasia, and what does a heart do? It pumps blood to all parts of the body,” says Vesterbacka. In this case, education – coupled with fresh entrepreneurial mindset – is the life blood that Finland is willing to share with the rest of Eurasia (or world, by all means).
In Finland, you can join the ecosystem that creates cool innovations.
“Nokia, IRC, Linux, MySQL… there is a long line of things developed in Finland and used all around the world,” says Vesterbacka, himself known for another Finnish innovation, the Angry Birds. “New innovations just keep on coming in Finland, and studying here is an excellent way to become a part of this success story.”
“By the way, English is widely spoken in Finland. Learning some Finnish may be useful and fun, but it is possible to study, work and chat with the granny next door in English,” says Harri Suominen, anticipating the obvious question of many non-Finns.
New innovations just keep on coming in Finland, and studying here is an excellent way to become a part of this success story.
Why Tampere, then?
“Finland is the happiest nation in the world, and Finns have rated Tampere the most desirable place to live and to study in Finland,” says Suominen. People have also made their dreams come true: Tampere is a dynamic city of growth with a large student population. “An excellent location for good life,” summarises Vesterbacka.
Tampere University community is building a new model for higher education and research in Finland. It is a three-in-one solution for students, created in 2019, steadily working to become one of the top universities in Europe. “The most modern one, as well,” says Suominen.
Tampere-based Edunation has its finger on the pulse of education, too. Their most recent idea, still under construction as we speak in November 2020, is a program for the present and future social media influencers. The plan goes like this: students will graduate in Tampere as Bachelors of Business Administration with strong entrepreneurial and influencer skills.
The program is called “Influencers United”. In its first intake in 2021, there will be some world-famous Finnish and international influencers taking part as students – but also as program planners.
“Proakatemia in Tampere would be a perfect partner to help us put these plans into practice. They are best-known for their use of student team enterprises as a learning method. Stay tuned!” urges Suominen.
Let’s say I study in Tampere, Finland. Then what?
“You’ll get a fantastic education and you’ll also get a fantastic job”, states Vesterbacka. Labour shortage is a fact in Finland – and not only in the headline-making hi-tech industries but also in care and service sectors.
“Studying in Finland, building your local networks and learning the local work culture gives you a head start to get one of these jobs,” says Suominen.
Looking for an employment as a non-native is often not that easy in any part of the world, but in Finland there is a strong mindset to change that. Big companies are already naturally international and startups tend to need the people with best skills, no matter where they come from originally.
“We want to have a growing amount of startups launched by international students,” states Suominen. – Take a look at the home of Tampere startups at Platform 6.
Vesterbacka has another point to highlight: in Finland we tend to work in non-hierarchical atmospheres. “If you are skilled, you can do big things regardless of your status or years of experience.”
Should you be family-oriented now or later in life, Finland has much to offer: a traditionally good work-life balance and the best environment to raise a family. “Safe, clean, stable… and your kids will have access to the best education system in the world. For free,” says Suominen.
How about the ROI in the Finnish higher education?
Tuition fees are moderate, initial salaries reasonable and students are allowed to work part-time with certain restrictions. For non-EU students, the limit is a nice 25 hours per week, full-time allowed outside term times.
“If you work while studying, you’ve paid back your investment around the time you finish your studies. If you start working only after you’ve graduated, it’ll take a couple of years – less than in many other popular countries,” explains Suominen.
I’m interested – but doesn’t the coronavirus pandemic spoil everything?
“Every crisis has also opportunities. Now when the whole world is facing the same challenge, Finland has a chance to share the best education with the rest of the world”, says Vesterbacka.
To make it more accessible, Edunation has launched the Pathway Diploma designed for international students who wish to earn a degree from top universities in Europe.
“You will be eligible to progress to degree studies at our partner universities after successfully completing the affordable Pathway Diploma. You can start online in your own country or at a Study Hub, and come here and continue when the time is right. Our Pathway gives students a guaranteed access and most of the courses will be accredited,”says Suominen.
“There are more students than ever looking for opportunities abroad. And Finland needs more international talent year after year. No matter if you are from Asia, Europe, Americas, Australia, Africa or Antarctica – welcome to Finland”, Vesterbacka and Suominen state.
Need more reasons to study in Finland? Edunation has listed them all. —> https://www.edunation.co/study-in-finland/
Edunation helps students find their way into the world-renowned Finnish higher education. Our aim is to help international students with their application process and answer all questions they might have about living and studying in Finland. Through us, students can enroll in full degree programs, participate in summer schools and exchange programs provided by Finnish universities.Read more about this partner