Meet our International Student Ambassadors for the year 2015!
The best way to learn about University of Helsinki is from the students who are here now! Our Ambassadors will share their insights and experiences on studies, career and life in Helsinki. Student ambassadors volunteer to help others get to know UH.
So stay tuned and check out their blogging!
If you want to contact our ambassadors via email, please check their email-addresses here.
Hey! I’m Hayley! I’m a 23-year-old Grad student from USA (specifically Kentucky), where I graduated with a Bachelor’s in German Studies at a small school called Transylvania University. I moved to Helsinki last year to pursue my Master’s Degree in Germanic Philology with the Faculty of Arts.
What drew me to pack up all my belongings and move here to Finland was the sense of adventure and culture the country has to offer. I love the beauty of Finnish nature, the confusion of Finnish language and yes, even the winters here.
When I’m not at the University I enjoy being social, traveling, taking photos and exploring (or getting lost…) in Helsinki. There are tons of things to do in the city, as well as on the campus with various student organizations to fit whatever interests you!
Finland and the University of Helsinki are fantastic places, and I hope you really enjoy your studies and stay here. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, or if you’re up for an adventure!
Hi! My name is Irene, and I am a baby seagull, as in a first year Master’s student of Social Sciences in Media and Global Communication. I graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a Bachelor of Arts, double-majoring in English Studies and Media and Cultural Studies. I went on an exchange for a semester to Aarhus, Denmark during my bachelor studies, and that is how I fell in love with the Scandinavia and decided to come back for my Master’ Degree.
When I arrived in Helsinki in August 2014, I thought I would come prepared with the Scandinavian experience I acquired during my stay in Denmark. However, Finland just keeps on wowing me in its own different and unique ways, especially with the nature, the weather, and the language!
My stay in Helsinki has been wonderful and I am very fortunate to have met amazing people and friends. Having been a mentor for international exchange students, an exchange student myself, and currently an international full-degree student, I could not understand better the difficulties a foreigner would face when adjusting to a new environment. Please do not hesitate to get in touch, whether you have concerns regarding studying at the University of Helsinki, or you just want to make a new friend!
Moi! My name is Marjolein, and I started this September with the international Master’s program in chemistry. I’m from the Netherlands, and obtained my Bachelor of Science from the Maastricht Science Programme. After living in the Netherlands for twenty years, I felt it was time for a change and applied to universities abroad, and got accepted to the University of Helsinki.
I started my studies this September at the Kumpula campus where the faculty of science is located. After spending one semester at the university of Helsinki, I can say I really enjoy it. There are many international exchange and degree students, and the atmosphere is relaxed and motivating. Helsinki is a beautiful city, and a great student city. There are plenty of things to do and visit. There is something nice for everybody; museums, parks, nature, parties, sports, etc.
At this moment I’m not sure what the future will hold, but I’m sure that these years at the University of Helsinki will help me in the future, and that it was a good decision to come to Helsinki.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to send me an e-mail!
Moi! My name is Nathaniel and I am studying the International Master’s in European Studies with a major in General History. Originally from Wales, UK, I made the decision to apply for Helsinki on a whim and it turned out to be the best impulsive decision I’ve ever made! Put simply I have settled into Helsinki and Finland far quicker than I could ever have hoped for. In fact, when I go back to the UK I quickly start to feel homesick for Helsinki. I can think of no better compliment for my new home!
The European Studies course offers the opportunity to look at all aspects of Europe and not just the EU. This was particularly important for me, as my interests lie in larger historical trends and not just those surrounding the EU. This means that I can focus on my favourite area of history – the Cold War. However, if your interests lie in areas such as EU expansion/relations etc, the course is also perfect for that. The flexibility of the department allows you to plan your studies around your particular interests.
For anyone thinking of applying, I would strongly recommend that they go for it. My course has far more flexibility and choice than I have ever experienced in my prior studies, the lecturers are all extremely approachable and helpful, plus the city is a great place to be. I would recommend getting to know the locals as these are the people who can show you the best places to spend your time in the city. Helsinki is now my home and I don’t intend to leave anytime soon!
My name is Jibril Taufiq Iddriss and I am a first year Master’s student studying in the Religion, Conflict and Dialogue (RCD) International Master’s program at the faculty of Theology. I’m a 30-year-old from Ghana and I have lived in Ghana all my life. I graduated from the University of Ghana in 2010.
I decided to apply to the University of Helsinki because the Religion, Conflict and Dialogue (RCD) program seemed like a unique and interesting way to enrich my knowledge and understanding of Religion and Conflict from a different perspective. So far, I have been impressed by the focus of my courses and I have found the conversations with professors, lecturers and my fellow students to be enriching and motivational, both in and out of the classroom.
Regarding my career objectives or future plans, after my studies my plan is to be able to work in a well-known international institution preferably in United Nations or as a foreign affairs analyst for the government so it will give me the opportunity to be actively engaged in global conflict management in areas such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Libya, Nigeria and the Two Sudans which explores the concept of reconciliation as a means to help people and societies emerge from civil war, genocide, and dictatorship. Also working as a scholar at a university or a think-tank has always been a very tempting career choice. In the long run, I am aiming at a political career.
Moi! My name is Giulia Pernisi, and I’m a Master’s student majoring in Italian Philology. I’m from Italy (Milano) but I moved to Finland permanently in 2013. Why? Because I’m truly, madly, deeply in love with this wonderful country. From a lifelong dream, to action, and finally to reality – it’s been quite a journey so far, and yet, easily the best choice of my life!
In a nutshell, my passion for languages and foreign cultures has lead me to study and graduate in ‘Foreign Languages and Intercultural Relationships’, from the University of Milan. Shortly after that I moved to Finland, and set up my life from zero. During that time, the decision to become a teacher was born from the joy and challenge of giving private Italian lessons to Finns. A year later, here I am, proud and happy to be studying to become a teacher here at the University of Helsinki.
And oh my, what a place this is! Just to give you an idea, I’ll highlight some of the services I’m currently using:
1) Well equipped and easily accessible libraries.
2) The Computer centre of Aleksandria, and its free printers.
3) The efficient health care service that it’s either cheap or completely free.
4) The Unicafes where you make your belly happy paying just 2.60€.
5) The high quality language teaching, offered by the Language Centre.
Not to mention the amazing teachers I have who, among other things, have given me amazing hands-on experiences in order to reach my goals. Furthermore, I love the informal and totally relaxed environment, as well as the flexibility offered by the study plan which allows you to tailor it to your interests.
And lastly, I want to mention Helsinki, a safe and efficient city full of trustworthy, friendly and open minded people – with a vibrant nightlife for those who wish to embrace it.
I’m glad to be one of the International Student Ambassadors for 2015, and together with you, we’ll make your stay at the University of Helsinki a memorable one!
Feel free to contact me with any questions, and be certain to come to say Hello! – we can have a chat in English, Finnish, Italian or French.
Be very welcome in Finland and enjoy a super enjoyable student life! 😉
My name is Rupsha and I am a first year Master’s student studying Computer Science as my major, in the Department of Science which is located at the Kumpula campus of the University of Helsinki. I come from the vibrant and bustling
India and hold a Bachelor of Technology degree in Computer Science and Engineering. It has been only a few months since I came to Helsinki, but the huge cultural differences I have experienced have been pleasantly overwhelming. I am glad to say that now when I picture home, my quaint little apartment in Helsinki comes to my mind.
I feel very lucky to have met people from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds,
and have always wanted to have this kind of an experience. It is a great pleasure
for me to be a part of the ambassadors team of the University of Helsinki and help
promote this university to prospective students. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about this university and the lifestyle here.
I love reading, travelling and meeting new people. I’m currently trying to learn
Finnish, and it makes me realise how learning the way it is spoken makes me look
at my everyday activities in a completely different light!
Hey, I am doing my master degree of international law in Helsinki for the first year. Helsinki and Finns are extremely friendly, staffs in the university are easy to access and a lot of unique features to explore here. My choice has been convinced completely since I have lived in Helsinki for the first term.
Originally, I come from Shanghai, China. But I was shuttling between Europe, Middle East and China in the last 4 years. Comparatively, Helsinki is such a excellent option for studying. You will have a pure and quiet environment to slow down and to upgrade yourself.
My plan is to get my master degree in law here and to expand my network in Europe. I am expecting the coming year and would like to see more newbies!
Moikka! I’m Shirajum Monira (nickname Erina), a 23 year old International Master’s degree student originally from Bangladesh, a small green country located in South Asia. At present I am studying in the second year with major in physics and specialization on Particle Physics. After graduation I would like to pursue a PhD in Astroparticle physics and continue research in this particular field of Particle Physics.
On September, 2013 I moved to Helsinki after completing a Bachelor of Science degree with triple major in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics from Bangalore, India. Although my Bachelor thesis was in the field of Radio Astronomy but later it seemed my true passion remained elsewhere.
Joining university of Helsinki was a life changing experience for me, and it’s not only because of the excellent facilities provided for students but also for the positive atmosphere which motivates students to learn. Since I switched my discipline after Bachelor’s degree, so first year here had been quite confusing but the immense support and encouragement from the professors helped me finding that true passion. We learn to study independently and effectively grow new skills in a friendly international environment.
The Finnish culture is another thing which impressed me the most. People here are open minded, and welcoming. Finland’s unique nature; beautiful forests, colourful autumn and peaceful people made me feel like a home away from home. On my arrival in Finland I was worried about extreme winter here, but guess what? Now I eagerly wait for more snow!
One thing for sure, Finland is the best country for students to study and enjoy life at the same time. Tervetuloa Suomi!
If you are thinking to apply here and need information, then please do not hesitate to contact me.
Meet our International Student Ambassadors for the year 2014!
Moi! My name is Austin and I am a first year master’s student studying in the Ethnic Relations, Cultural Diversity and Integration (ERI) International Master’s program with a major in Sociology. I’m a 23 year old originally from Chicago and a true Midwesterner at heart. I graduated from Loyola University Chicago last spring.
I decided to apply to University of Helsinki because the ERI program seemed to be a unique and interesting way to enrich my knowledge of Sociology in a new context. So far, I have been impressed by the focus of my courses and I have found the conversations with professors, lecturers and my fellow students to be enriching and motivational, both in and out of the classroom.
When I am not studying, I like to hang out with my friends, utilize UniSport’s great facilities, go for runs along the sea and the Vantaa River, check out cultural events at the University and in the city, and explore new cafes and coffee shops around Helsinki.
I hope that I am able to assist you with any questions that you may have about the University, student life or life in Helsinki!
Hi, I am Chen Shuo, a first year student in the Master’s Program of Translational Medicine in Faculty of Medicine. I was born and raised in China and then graduated from the Netherlands for my bachelor studies. Now I’ve been in Finland for more than half a year and I am enjoying it very much!
The student life in the University of Helsinki has been a great pleasure for me. I’ve combined wonderful academic and social life here. The studies maybe a little bit intense but the knowledge gained is exciting for me. Besides, going out with friends after school is definitely the most joyful thing you could do to relax and enjoy the beautiful city.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions and I will do my best to help you!
Hi, I’m Katarína and I’m from Slovakia. I completed both my bachelor and master degree at the Comenius University in Bratislava and now I’m pursuing another International Master degree in International Business Law at the University of Helsinki, Faculty of Law.
So far, I completed my first semester and I believe that this programme will broaden my knowledge in business law and help me in my future career. Moreover, international dimension of law always fascinated me and Helsinki being a very open and international city fits perfectly into my plans.
I’m also quite active person and I’m very keen on sports, especially football and ice-hockey.
Terve! I am born in Finland, but raised in Spain. I’ve also lived in the UK and my wife is from Romania. My 4 closest friends are a Spaniard living in London, a Finn I met in Malaga, a Chechen who lives in Dubai and a Swede from Jönköping. It is for this reason that I have always questioned my own identity in terms of nationality.
After having worked for approximately 10 years in the Corporate World, I decided to quit everything and try to rediscover myself and perhaps change my career. Don’t misunderstand, I have enjoyed my previous works to a great extent, but something inside me was urging me to do this Master of Ethnic Relations, Cultural Diversity and Integration (study line: Politics) at the Faculty of Social Science. I suppose, I am finally studying my own life and rediscovering myself!
I am currently also member of the board of the Student Association of the Faculty (Kannunvalat ry) and founding member of the Student Association of the Faculty for International Master Degree Students. I love to party, and let me tell you, these Finnish students know how to party 😉 . I am also passionate about Formula 1 and speed, and occasionally I play chess. I am looking forward to meeting & welcoming you!
My name is Jana, and I am a 23 year old grad-student from Austria, the country of the Sound of Music. Instead of running around on the mountains yodelling, I rather spend my time at the University of Helsinki studying Intercultural Encounters, majoring in Study of Religions.
What initially made me check the international Master programmes offered by the University of Helsinki was love. I fell in love with a Finn, and decided to come to Finland. I was immediately interested in “Intercultural Encounters” and was determined to start my studies here. Moreover, I was amazed by the possibility of getting high class education without having to pay tuition fees!
There is so much else that I would love to praise about the university life in Helsinki such as the gym facilities, the 24h study-possibilities at Aleksandria or the many Unicafés assuring that I get my daily dose of caffeine – but the best is you come and find out yourself
Veruscka Xavier Filgueira
Moi! Miten menee?
I’m Veruscka, a 23 year-old student from Brazil. Studying in Finland seemed like a very distant dream for a long time, but guess what? I gathered the courage, applied and, in the autumn of 2013, I joined the Faculty of Social Sciences as a student in the REMS programme. I’m majoring in Social Psychology and after completing my first semester here, I can say I’ve been pleasantly surprised about many things! I try to keep my option open for the future, but I hope that my studies here will allow me to explore a wider range of academic and professional possibilities. I’m glad to be a Student Ambassador this year and I wish you will all become as enthusiastic about Finland and the University of Helsinki as I am!
I am really looking forward to share my wonderful experience in Helsinki with you. I have been studying in different countries since 2007. Those precious experiences are not only interesting stories to share with my friends, but also help me understand new friends with different culture backgrounds more easily. If you are new in Helsinki and about to start to learn this lovely country and finding your new social network, I am glad to help you out with my friends.
Contact me whether you have any questions or just want to chat.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org , or just find me on facebook.
I moved to Finland from Greece around 3 years ago. While still not knowing what to do here, I got accepted at the University of Helsinki to pursue my master in Political Sciences. It came out of the clear blue sky, but now I am sure that it was the best decision I have made so far.
This university offers so overwhelming experiences that I am sure I will never forget this period of my life. Meeting new people, working in an international environment, seeing the opportunities for further research and being able to create your own degree, depending on your interests and not a strict schedule designed for you, are only a few of the things on top of my mind, when someone asks me about being a student in Finland. The country itself has something unusual; the language, the weather, the people. This all gives you a sense of calmness, something to be really appreciated from a person coming from the loud south!
Mian Awais Ahmad
I got into University of Helsinki International Master Degree Program of Physical Science with major in Materials Science. The Department of Physics is located in a Kumpula Campus which is also home for other natural and computer sciences. After graduation I am planning to either get into a PhD or business which sounds very promising in Finland.
Now I feel like incomplete without talking about city of Helsinki, which is of course the home of the top class University of Helsinki! Once a strange city now gives me a feeling of home. This international city and people who lives here are loveable despite of the cold, icy and dark winter. Don’t worry; we have tremendous summer, autumn and spring seasons too. Based on various experiences one’s body might leave Helsinki & UH but the heart stays here.
Any questions about getting into the University of Helsinki? Or want to know more? Feel free to buzz me! Tervetuloa!
Hi! I am a first year Master’s student of international politics, enrolled in the programme Democracy and Global Transformations at the University of Helsinki. I hold a degree in Governance and Public Policy, which I obtained at the University of Passau in Germany.
Immediately when I arrived last year I felt warmly welcome at the University of Helsinki as well as at my department. The Department of Political and Economic Studies, where the programme is based, is home to some of the best professors in the fields of international politics, democracy studies, peace and conflict as well as political theory. In general, the teaching staff is accessible and eager to supervise students. Also, the study programme is flexible and encourages students to explore relevant, supporting subjects and conduct interdisciplinary studies. I have chosen to attend seminars at the faculty of law.
From my experience, Finnish culture and society is open to new ideas and influences, which make me feel part of the dynamic of the city, although I do not speak the Finnish language. Together with some fellow Master students I created a platform to discuss contemporary matters of international politics in English, which quickly gained resonance at our department as well as outside the university. Foreign and Finnish activists and researchers actively attend our meetings and share expert insight on the topic of discussion with students and other participants.
Not only university professors are accessible for students but also many other aspects of life in Helsinki. Students can easily see the Opera, the Ballet or go to the theatre due to the significant discounts provided by the Finnish government. Also, the fresh sea air and great nature clearly raise the quality of life in general. Since I am a fan of winter sport activities, I especially enjoy the cross-country track that starts right in front of my doorstep.
I am happy about my decision to pursue my studies in Helsinki and would highly recommend my programme for those who intend to study international politics and related subjects. You are welcome to contact me for any questions you may have.
Meet our International Student Ambassadors for the year 2013!
They are also keen to assist you with any questions that you may have about the University, student life or life in Helsinki!
Moi kaikki! I am a first year student of economics at the University of Helsinki, International Master’s Degree Programme. Although I arrived here only in August, now I can definitely say that Helsinki became a real home city for me; and studies together with students’ life at the University was the main reason for it. I made wonderful friends here, got a chance to develop my knowledge and realize my talents, participated in various events and just had a wonderful time!
I would be very happy to promote our great University, contribute to the further development of it and do my best to help potential students make the right decision. And also be one of the advisors for the freshmen of course.
I like hanging out with my friends, theatre, board games, enjoy doing sports (especially martial arts, beware) and reading. As for future plans – not sure yet, but right now one of my biggest projects is learning Finnish; it’s very hard, but I have a strong motivation of trying to find a job here in Finland.
One of my dreams is to jump with a parachute someday, but I’m too scared to do it alone – so whoever is interested, feel free to contact me 😉
Hei! My name is Dina and I come from Latvia, a beautiful green country approximately 400 kilometres south from Finland. I have 22 years of experience of life, and it seems to me that I always happen to be at the right time and place. Now I’m in Helsinki studying in the International Master’s degree programme in Plant Production Sciences. I am very pleased with my studies: the variety and quality of the courses and the people I am lucky enough to have met. I know some might disagree, but the winter in Helsinki is particularly wonderful: it’s cold outdoors, but never inside, and all white and soft – exactly what you expect when heading North. I’m still surprised that, while some ski to the classes, others may never stop riding their bikes. Remarkable things happen here embraced by a contagious peacefulness.
I am 23 years old girl from Slovakia. After finishing my Master´s degree in Law in May 2012 in Bratislava, Slovakia I decided to apply for International Master´s Degree Programme at the Faculty of Law of the University of Helsinki and here I am now studying International Master´s Degree Programme in International Business Law. I believe that this specialized degree will help me in my future career. I have already successfully finished the first semester and I have extended my knowledge in many different areas of International and European Business Law.
I am Abdul Ghafar from Pakistan. I have graduated from University of Helsinki, Finland in Erasmus Mundus Food of Life (EMFOL): the science of animal derived foods and now Post-Graduate student at Department of Food and Environmental Sciences, University of Helsinki. In addition, I completed MSc (Hons.) Food Technology and BSc (Hons.) Agriculture major subject Food Sciences from University of Agriculture Faisalabad-Pakistan.
I am working with Hemicellulose Research Group, under the kind supervision of Dr. Kirsi Mikkonen and Dr. Kirsti Parikka. My research for Doctoral thesis is focusing on ‘Novel functional materials from upgraded biopolymers: polysaccharide aerogel’.
It is pleasure for me to be a part of the University of Helsinki Ambassadors Team to attract more international students (Master and PhD Degree students) to the University of Helsinki, Finland.
Facebook ID: http://www.facebook.com/abdul.ghafar.524
Skype ID: agsajid7486
“Distribute Happiness to All”
Hi, I am Xiao Zhou, 23 years old and I am from China! I am now in the international master’s degree programme in Food Sciences, and this is my first year. You can learn the principles and theories of food processing, how to produce your favorite products, and how to maintain food safety in our department! I love food science, I love food, I love cooking Chinese dishes! Also, I love traveling and reading! If you are interested in Food Science, or in our university, make your move, we are waiting for you!
I am Qian from China. I obtained my bachelor’s degree, majoring in Human Resources Management and minoring in International Economy and Trade from Soochow University in China in 2009. After graduation I worked in a French aerospace company as an HR officer for 3 years. Last August I left from Suzhou, a place known as ”Heaven on Earth” in China and set foot on Helsinki -”the Daughter of the Baltic Sea”.
I have studied in the master’s degree programme of Adult Education and Developmental Work Research (ATMO) in the Institution of Behavioural Sciences since September 2012. The programme offers me creative and concrete tools for in depth insights of organizational learning, work development and change management. With the help of the world class professors, I am able to integrate the theoretical studies with the practical societal needs. The programme aims at cultivating human resources developers, consultants and professional researchers and it fits my future career plan perfectly.
Marie Christine Acmo
I am a Filipino national who is currently taking my master studies in Media and Global Communication. I arrived here in Finland in August 2012, and I have enjoyed the weather and the university life. Coping with a teaching style which is very different from what I am used to was my greatest struggle, but nevertheless, I managed to adjust. I am very much looking forward to obtaining a degree and getting a job in the communication industry in the near future.
Hi, my name is Wang Xiaoqing. I am a master student of Food Science in the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry. I feel honoured to be a member of the student ambassador team and I am more than happy to introduce the fun life here up north. Please do not hesitate to ask anything, I will try to do my best to help you to get to know this brilliant university.
I come from China, majoring in Food Science in Faculty of Agriculture and Forest. I started my master study in 2012. Finland as well as University of Helsinki attracted me a lot which makes me more determined to study here. Also, I plan to begin my working career here where I experience excellent professors, plenty of study opportunities, good study environment and appealing living environment.
I am one of the international students at the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, located at the Viikki campus of the University of Helsinki. I specialize on Forest Products Marketing and Management.
I have first arrived to Finland in August 2008 in order to start pursuing my Bachelor’s degree. Having completed 2 years of my studies I went to Canada for my exchange programme. After that I was focusing on my final thesis for 3-4 months and then flew to Maldives, where I spent a year. In Maldives I was devoted to the completion of my internship followed by the regular half-year employment. In August 2012 I have returned to Finland again to continue my education and commence my Master’s degree studies.
I enjoy finding a perfect combination between social and academic life. Being busy keeps me alive. I am result-oriented, enthusiastic, energetic and optimistic individual. I have numerous life experiences to share with. I find traveling, diving, nature exploration and experience exchanging to be the most exciting things what life can offer.