The HelsinkiUNI International Talent Programme (HITP) is where international talents from the University of Helsinki meet local companies and organizations!
HITP is a mentoring programme which aims at helping international students learn about working in Finland directly from local companies and organizations. A local company/organization mentors a group of international students, focusing on sharing expertise and insights on their field of interest and the practicalities of networking and finding a job in Finland.
Each mentor-mentee group sets their own areas of focus based on their needs and wishes, but the topics of discussion can include for example:
- What are the latest trends and developments in this field?
- How do you enter this field?
- Which skills and competencies are required?
- What kinds of career paths exist in the area of expertise?
The group gets together 3-5 times over 6 months.
What’s in it for mentees?
As a HITP mentee, you will get to
- learn valuable information about expert work in your field of expertise first-hand from a local organisation
- hear about different kinds of career paths in Finland
- build your professional network in Finland
- share your perspectives and ideas and thereby support the mentor partner in gaining an international perspective.
Over 200 international participants over two years!
The program started running in 2020. The season 2022-23 will be its third round with 18 participating degree programmes.
In the first two HITP seasons we have partnered up with:
- 17 organizations and
- over 200 mentees from 14 degree programmes.
In the season 2021-22 the programme also welcomed participants from the HEI Life project which supports the integration of international academics and their families living and working in Finland.
Building career competences through a support network
Mentors and mentees are supported throughout their journey together. The goal is to build up professional competences and also networks with long-term impact.
The programme includes several sessions and material to support mentors and mentees in maximising the benefits of the mentoring process:
- introduction sessions to both mentors and mentees
- a joint kick-off
- a joint final meeting
- a mentoring manual with lots of tips
- two career management workshops for mentees.
Note that after the HITP programme ends, the companies/organizations and the students are free to continue working together if they wish to do so. Otherwise, there are no commitments on either side after the programme ends.
The programme is coordinated by Career Services at the University of Helsinki.
Check out the HITP video, where both mentees and mentors share their experiences from the first season 2020-21:
How does Covid-19 affect HITP?
During the covid-19 pandemic most of the meetings have taken place online, following the guidelines of the University of Helsinki. We hope mentors are able to organize the mentoring sessions in a hybrid mode, including both online and face-to-face meetings, during the program round of 2022-23. The University of Helsinki follows the guidelines of national authorities and all participants will be informed of possible changes in instructions in due time. In all cases, we prioritize the health and safety of our participants.
HITP as part of Talent Boost
HelsinkiUNI International Talent Programme falls under Finland’s larger Talent Boost framework. Talent Boost is a national programme, which aims to boost the immigration of senior specialists, employees, students and researchers to Finland in order to make Finland more competitive internationally.
According to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment in Finland, international talent is defined as “skilled immigrants or Finnish returnees with international experience, expertise and connections that can generate added value for Finnish industries and cater to the needs of the labour force”.
HITP contributes to this larger framework by providing a means through which international students can prepare to enter the Finnish workforce or attract those who may not have originally considered staying in Finland after their studies. HITP also intends to show Finnish companies the benefits and possibilities that emerge from working with international students.