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PAUSE International Edition

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Editorial Text: Toni Hildén, Editor-in-chief

Good news, everyone! I wonder have many of you read that one with the voice of Professor Farnsworth in their head. But yeah, it’s good news indeed, because PAUSE is back! Some of you may already have noticed that something does seem a little weird about it though. Oh wait, yes, it’s in English! What is this madness? If you haven’t been walking your eyes and ears closed the whole time during your studies in Laurea, you probably have noticed that our school is a very international environment. For example, there are exchange students, people studying in the English degree programmes and all kinds of international projects going on all the time. There are so many English speaking students and personnel in our school that we felt that we want to dedicate this PAUSE issue to them. So here it is: PAUSE international edition. International, multicultural, globalization. These are terms that are nowadays repeated everywhere and all the time. Not only are the workplaces international and multicultural these days, but so are the schools too. I think it’s really good that our school can prepare us for working with people from all over the world. Studying in an international environment is a good opportunity to improve your language skills, gain an understanding of different cultures and create all sorts of networks with people from different countries. I encourage everyone to take part in projects and study units where you get to work with our foreign students. It might not be so easy all the

time, because the language skills can differ a lot among different people, but it can be a really educational experience. PAUSE international edition dives into heart of the student exchange, gives a taste of traditional Finnish foods and reveals what international tutoring is all about, and so much more. In the future we will have an international section written in English in every PAUSE –magazine, so stay tuned for that and all the other new and exciting things that the ongoing year will bring to our readers. It’s time to say goodbye, see you next time, and remember to dress up warm, because it’s bloody cold outside! … and don’t forget to take a PAUSE, and relax!


3 Editorial 6

IC-SID goes Leicester!


Language skills and contacts across the world!


Far Out - Going abroad


Did you know...


Event Calendar




People from all over the world - Bachelor Programmes in English


Happy Valentine’s day!


Student Exhange - The best experience you can get while studying


Traditional Finnish dishes


How to - Tips for surving in Finland!


Who are we?

PAUSE 1/2012

Photographer Otso Nuotio

Laurea SID student magazine

Graphic Design Heli Koivulahti

Editor-in-chief Toni Hildén


Second editor-in-chief Mari Aro

three times a semester, six times a academic year

Copywriter Mari Aro


Editors Mari Aro Jannika Järvi Inka Kataja Elina Ohra-aho Joonas Tattari Cover photo Otso Nuotio

Laurea SID Leppävaara Arto Saloranta, Place of printing Kirjapaino Markprint Oy, Lahti Contact & feedpack

Model Ali Li Wannous


Do you want to experience something awesome? Would you want to go abroad, but don’t really have the time or guts to go? We heard a rumour that you can try what it is to like to travel and study in a foreign country, but instead of going for a full semester, it only takes 2 weeks! Wanna know more? Well, keep reading. Leicester, a relatively small city in the middle of United Kingdom. Not too much to do if the students are not there, but during autumn or spring semesters, a lot of fun to be in. While the local students crawl back home, go for a vacation or start doing their essays and studying for exams, a group of students from various European countries travel there to study. Laurea University of Applied Sciences, in cooperation with three other universities from Poland, Germany and Estonia, arrange an intensive course about Service Innovation and Design methods. Laurea is the coordinator of the whole intensive program. The course lasts for two weeks, and takes place on April 15th – 29th this year. In Leicester, UK. The course gives you an interesting possibility to learn what SID methods are, and how to apply them in practice, in international surroundings with an intercultural approach. In this case, “in practice” means together with local companies. On top of all that, you get to travel a bit, see and get to know a foreign country, meet new people and improve your language skills! And, at least 5 credits, not bad for a two-week trip to England, huh?

How to apply?

IC-SID goes Leicester! Text: Mari Aro / Photo: Mari Aro

If you are interested, you can send a formal application along with your CV (with a picture of you in it) to You need to send your application latest on February 3rd. There are only 6 places available for Laurea students, so focus on the application. The process starts with the applications, which are processed within a week from the submission. The best applicants are then invited for an interview, after which six lucky students are chosen. When the place is offered to you and you say yes, the registration is binding. Every applicant will receive an email regardless whether you get on the course or not.

The results will be published by the end of February. There will also be a waiting list in case someone cancels from another university. You may apply if you are studying in Leppävaara campus, are a EU citizen, can communicate in English, and are a positive, hard working student. You need to be at least in the second year of your studies. Some financial support will be provided from Laurea, but as EU is the major funder of this project, the major expense will be the plane tickets, which will later be refunded to you. Students get housing and food for free once in Leicester. All you need to do is apply, be convincing and innovative, study and have fun. So why not?

So who are behind all this? The IC-SID team works within the International lab. The International lab has 13 employees. Even when there are students completing their internships, or just courses, it is a nice, calming environment to work in. IC-SID team is a part of the International lab. They can be found in the main lobby, near Cafea Beat.

The team holds Team leader: Kristina Henriksson Project assistants: Piia Berghäll and Nora Vorimo In cooperation with Virpi Kaartti and Päivi Mantere More information: type in IC-SID


Language skills and contacts across the world! Text: Elina Ohra-aho / Photo: Otso Nuotio Alongside with the Finnish speaking programs, there are international students studying in English in Laurea Leppävaara campus. On top of this, there are many exchange students coming to Finland to study in our University. How can you get to be their tutor, and what is required for it? LAUREAMKO recruits international tutors to work alongside with the “normal tutors” twice a year. Their job is to help out the international students to adjust to the Finnish life style. The course for international tutoring lasts for two days, after which you get to choose whether to start tutoring the exchange students, the degree students, or even both. The international tutor’s job is diverse, including arranging and planning of the orientation happenings: arrival days, Helsinki-tour, course for Survival-Finnish, as well as the orientation days for both degree and exchange programs. However, like for the “normal tutors”, the most important thing is to be supportive, a friend, to the new students. And by the way, you can get 3 credits from this! The application period begins in February, so be alert!

Best times as an international tutor Name: Jani Liukkonen Age: 25 Programme: Business Management Exchange: in Canada Internship: in Spain

Jani Liukkonen is the most dedicated international tutor you can find. He’s been doing it for three semesters already. He first applied on his first semester, after bumping into an advertisement for international tutoring. “I saw the add and said to myself, hey, this would be perfect for me! So, I decided to apply so I could get to know foreign people, and to get to speak English, which I love. I felt I was meant to do this”, Jani laughs. Jani did think about doing tutoring in Finnish as well, but came to the conclusion that international tutoring was more for him. “I enjoyed international tutoring way too much to switch to the Finnish side. However, I got to try it out once, as one of the Finnish tutors called me for help after she didn’t have a tutoring pair. So I went to help her out with her group.”

Getting friends and the best experiences The best part for Jani is when you get to meet so many people from so many backgrounds and cultures. Also, the fact that you get to practice your language skills is a huge benefit, and if there is a specific language you’d like to practice, you can always hang out with people who speak it natively. You can learn a lot from them. Also, it’s great to network and make new contacts; after all it may prove useful when you are applying for a job or an internship abroad. Every semester you also meet people who you become close with. It’s likely you’ll keep in touch with them even after their exchange.


“Last Christmas I even got a Christmas card from a Belgian exchange student. “ Jani explains with a smile on his face. For Jani, the most special moment was when a student once told him he was like a father to them all! The most challenging aspect of international tutoring is if you are shy and unsure of your language skills, it may be difficult to take charge of the situation, and get to know people. Even so, the opportunity to practice the use of language may be the best reason to apply. Jani doesn’t have any challenges himself anymore, as he’s been a tutor for so long.

most schools, Laurea does not have compulsory attendance. Some may find it difficult to adjust them and to orientate to the fact that even with only a few lessons to go to, you still have to work hard. For those who are interested in applying for international tutoring, Jani advices that it’s not necessarily wise to apply only because of the credits. However, if you really are interested, applying is totally worth it. “ If I hadn’t started tutoring, my “career’ in Laurea would have been a lot duller. It gives you so much, you should definitely join us!”

Jani likes: Music Traveling Friends Languages

Helping with problems People come to Jani and ask for help even with everyday issues, for example how to use the Finnish OTTO - ATM -machine. Also, the most common questions he gets are where something is, and how to get there. Jani is always happy to help. Apparently, the most perplexing things about Laurea are the teaching methods. Unlike in


Jani dislikes: Fake people Lying Too long days at work

Something new everyday The most challenging aspect of Sini’s work is that she never really gets anything complete, so that it could be set aside and forgotten. “It was easier as a lecturer. When the course ended, that was that: you could leave everything relating to the course behind. In this job, something new comes along everyday, which in a way is fun, but sometimes feels a bit hard. It’s as if you always have one million things to do.”

Far out - Going abroad Text: Elina Ohra-aho / Photo: Otso Nuotio / Illustration: Heli Koivulahti

Around 100 students leave for student exchange annually from Laurea’s Leppävaara Campus. There are over 118 places to choose from. How to apply, and what problems can you come across with? Sini Setälä, our International Coordinator, answered these questions for us.

Who: Sini Setälä From where: Helsinki Education: MBA and a graduated psychologist What does she do? An International Coordinator at Laurea Leppävaara Sini Setälä, originally from Helsinki, is the head of international activities in Laurea. She is responsible for almost everything that has to do with student exchange. She came to Laurea acting as a lecturer after substituting a maternity leave in Espoo Institute of Hotel, Catering and Cleaning Services. “I thought it would be nice to try teaching. Nowadays, as an acting head of International Coordinator, I don’t teach anymore. It’s a pity, even if I now have more time to focus on my tasks.” Sini states, and adds that her dream job as a child was to be a teacher, at least according to a My Friends – book. An International Affairs team runs in Laurea. Sini obviously is a member of it, but the other members are: Milton Aldrete in charge of internships abroad, Conrad Lyaruu in charge of arriving exchange students, and Inka Kling in charge of students leaving for exchange. Sini is involved in everything, for example seeing that all students get their compensatory credits once they come back.


On the other hand, it is exactly the same thing that makes Sini enjoy her job, as every day is different from another, and you’re always learning something new. However, the best part is how the students feel about their exchange: “The most rewarding part is when the students go abroad to do their internships or exchange programs, and as they come back you can really tell how much they enjoyed it and grew, and how much the experience has changed them. It’s wonderful to be involved when someone get’s an experience like that!” Sini explains with a smile on her face.

How to apply? The period for applications starts January 9th, and continues until February 18th. You need to fill out an application to which you are required to choose three destinations where you would like to go. It is very important that you think and choose carefully what the best place for you would be, and where you could get the best and most useful studies from. It is also good to think about the language benefits you may gain from there. In rare cases the student may not get to go abroad after all, even if they wanted to. Sini explains that sometimes she has had to decline the exchange period, as some students have had the false assumption of taking a vacation. It is very easy to get excited about the lovely beaches and all the fun, but it is important to remember that the expected amount of credits students should complete yearly is around 60, even with the exchange. With this said, this is about the only obstacle to a period abroad. Laurea’s Leppävaara-campus has 118 partner schools around the world. Students may apply to other campuses’ partner schools as well. Laurea

does not really have to have a partnering deal with the school a student wants to go to, as long as it is a higher education institution. So basically, you can apply wherever you want to!

Safety first! One can come across some problems while abroad. Sini tells that the most common ones are related to the student’s apartment here in Finland: “Many students have said that there’s some problems with their apartments as they go away for a semester or two, because they don’t know what to do with it, or how to pay the rent. The other major issue seems to be relationships, especially if it has started only recently.” Sini mentions with slight amusement. When you go abroad, you might as well be prepared for some unpleasant surprises. It is very important to get insurance, or update it if you already have one, before you leave. “If something bad happens while you are abroad, for example your belongings get stolen or you get injured, you need to contact your local school’s coordinator. This is because when you are abroad, you are a student of the local school. It goes both ways: exchange students in Laurea are our responsibility. It is the local coordinators responsibility to help.” Still, Sini wishes all Laurea students would contact her as well. She really wants to know how things are going with the exchange. “It should also be considered if there is something we can do from here. I once flew to see how two students were doing with their exchange, but luckily it was nothing acute. I just felt I had to go and see what was going on”, Sini says. Evidently, Laurea’s students are being taken care of even when they are abroad. The exchange program is not easily left halfway. A few times some students have come home midway either because they have become ill, or something has happened to their relatives. Some have lost handbags or some other items because of theft, but nothing major has happened.


u o y d i D . . . w o kn For those who are or have been thinking of going abroad, Sini sends encouraging greetings: “So many students come back saying that the time spent abroad was the best time of their lives! You should come and talk to me if you are thinking what would be the best option for you. It’s not always the best option to follow your friends and go to the same destination, even if it would be fun. You should think what the best place for you would be. After all, you’re taking the job opportunities alone, not with your friends. Right?”

If you were a shoe, what would you be like? A high heel shoe. Some nice colour, maybe aniline red!

City or countryside? City, after all I am from Helsinki.

If you could choose, what animal would you be? A cat. What are you afraid of? That something would happen to my children. Or to the students somewhere far away. Where would you go for exchange? Chile, as they speak Spanish. Besides, the country is nice and interesting. And it would give a great opportunity to travel around South America.

Sini likes: Dancing, especially salsa Going to the summer cottage Languages Chocolate

LAUREAMKO and Fanipala Movie Tour present a totally free one day film festival. Come and check it out at the auditorium Timo starting at 9.30 in Leppävaara 29.2.2012*. During the day you can come and watch the movies for free. Fanipala will also provide movie snacks for you!

Sini dislikes: -

*check out the current schedule from


Event Calendar


Text: Jannika Järvi

Wed 1.2. to Wed 29.2. • Snowpark @ Kivikko, Helsinki

VALENTINE’S DAY 14.2. Wed 15.2. • Rammstein @ Hartwall Areena

Thu 2.2. • Club Lagoon @ The Circus Club klo 17.00

• Miss Helsinki Final @ The Circus Club

Thu 16.2. • 3 Doors Down (USA) @ Helsinki Ice Hall

Sat 4.2. • Winter Classic HIFK-Jokerit @ Olympic Stadium of Helsinki

• Lmfao (USA) @ The Circus Club

• Restaurant Day @ Helsinki (A food carnival when anyone can open a restaurant for a day)

• High School Party @ Onnela Club Thu 16.2. Fri 17.2. Sat 18.2. • Helsinki Burlesque Festival 2012 @ Dubrovnik & Gloria Helsinki

Sat 4.2. Sun 5.2. • Apassionata 2012 @ Hartwall Areena

Fri 2.3. Sat 3.3. • The Sounds (SWE) @ Cable Factory

• Art meets Ice 2012 @ Helsinki Zoo, Korkeasaari

Thu 9.2. • Ice Hockey Finland - Russia @ Olympic Stadium of Helsinki

Fri 2.3. Sat 3.3. Sun 4.3. • GoExpo 2012 @ Helsinki Exhibition & Convention Centre

Thu 9.2. Fri 10.2. Sat 11.2. Sun 12.2. • Disney on Ice @ Hartwall Areena

Fri 9.3. Sat 10.3. • Pacifique - Waikiki @ Waterpark Serena

Fri 10.- Sun 19.2. • Helsinki International Boat Show @ Helsinki Exhibition & Convention Centre


Sat 11.2. • Pendulum @ Club Teatria

release date 14.03.2012


Text: Toni Hildén / Photo: Otso Nuotio / Illustration: ServDes. Some of you might remember the ServDes.2012 ad from our last issue. Now it’s time to see what ServDes.2012 is all about. We had a chance to interview ServDes’ current project manager, Milla Harjula, and find out more about it. Milla Harjula is a 26-years-old former Laurea SID Leppävaara student. She graduated last year from our school. She ended up as the project manager when Janne-Valtteri Nisula, one of persons in the ServDes.2012 organizing committee, and also a senior lecturer from our school, asked Milla if she was interested in the job. Milla said that she felt honored and excited and took the job right away.

Three days of wisdom Milla describes ServDes as a multidisciplinary and international Service Innovation and Design -conference for almost anyone who is interested in improving customer centric services. It is part of the World Design Capital Helsinki 2012 program and it is held on 8.-10.2.2012. Originally the conference was a Scandinavian project, but it has turned into an international conference, because the demand was so high. This is the third time the conference is held. In the future the plan is to have the conference every second year and in different countries. “ServDes.2012 is divided into three days. On the first day, also known as “Preconference day”, the guests are taking a workshop -tour in the capital area. During the tour they get to know different kinds of service designing methods and solve interesting cases.” “The second conference day is in our school. We call it a “Research day”. It´s about taking a sci-

entific approach to the topic, so the main focus is on research paper tracks. The day also includes workshops and cases. We have reserved most of the rooms in our school for the conference, so there’s not much else going on in Leppävaara’s campus during those two days. ServDes.2012 is probably the biggest seminar ever organized in Laurea. We are expecting over 230 participants, so the traffic during those couple of days will be quite to handle!“ The third day is called “Business day”. During the day you can hear speeches for example from Evert Gummesson (Professor of Service Management and Marketing, Stockholm University) & Anne Stenroos (Design Director, Kone) and take part in workshops and a Service Design bazaar. The bazaar is fully designed and executed by a student group from our school. Companies and organizations can display their services in the bazaar. Let’s not forget the wine and cheese at the end of the day! So now you know what the fuss is all about if you’re strolling through our school’s hallways during the conference.

So what does she do? We asked Milla what her tasks are as a project manager. “I’m responsible of all the practical arrangements. I go to meetings with our partners, arrange transportations and reserve hotels, take care of the paperwork, update the websites and social media etc. There is enough work for every hour of the day.” Milla thinks that she has learned a lot during her job as a project manager. Her work experience before this has been mostly from different restaurants, so she has gained a lot of new and rewarding work experience from ServDes. She thinks that the job was a little bit


confusing at first, but it has become a lot more rewarding and easier now that she has more experience. She says that the hardest part is to keep all the pieces together, because there are so many things that need to be taken into account. “My working methods need to be really systematic, so that I can work efficiently. “ Milla’s job as a project manager will come to an end at the end of February, but her future already seems like a busy time. She will be working in

Learning by Developing - New Ways to Learn Conference on Creativity in Higher Education as a project worker, and also as a project assistant in an international project called Quicker Steps. The third project Milla is included in till end of this year is called “Luomua lautaselle – luomuruokaa julkisiin ruokapalveluihin”. We wish good luck to Milla with her future and with ServDes.2012.

People from all over the world

- Bachelor Programmes in English Text: Jannika Järvi & Toni Hildén / Illustration: Heli Koivulahti

Did you know that in Laurea Leppävaara we have four different English degree programmes? The programmes are not only for international students, because Finnish students can also apply to them. The applying period is currently on and you can apply till February 14th. The programmes are: Degree Programme in Business Management, Facility Management, Business Information Technology and Security Management. Degree earned in Facility Management is Restonomi (Bachelor of Hospitality Management) and all the other degrees are Tradenomi (Bachelors of Business Administration). Most of the programmes correspond to the Finnish degree programmes in Laurea Leppävaara.

The Business Management programme is about analyzing and developing business operations in international environment. Most of the studies are done in business projects with real business corporations. The Facility Management programme consists of planning, organizing, creating and innovating services to organizations. The programme also includes learning different ways of communication, management and research. In Business Information Technology programme the students specialize in ICT Systems, Networks, Information Security and different ICT Solutions. All the projects are done in a way that they could be used by different organizations. For example designing and implementing a communication platform for a company. The Security Management students focus on for example risk management, personal safety and security operations. The main idea is to ensure personal and communal safety.


Two different starting points We had a chance to interview two students in English Bachelor programmes. We asked them about how they ended up to the programmes and what it feels like to study in a multicultural environment. The students are Hanna Rantanen who is a 21-year-old Facility Management student and Jessica Dohmen who is a 22-year-old Business Management student. Jessica is originally from Belgium and Hanna is a Finnish upper secondary school graduate. Before coming to Laurea Jessica studied Management Assistant Languages in Belgium. We asked why she chose to come to study in Finland. She said that she was an exchange student here and she just wanted to learn more about Finland. When we asked Hanna why she chose to study in an English study programme, she said: “The idea came up in my mind when my ex-boyfriend said that he applies only to English degree programmes. I had never before thought that I would study in English, even though I had always loved English language. Nevertheless I started looking what kind of studies there are offered. First I did not find anything that would interest me, but then I found out that there is starting this new study programme Facility Management in Laurea. Then I just thought that why not apply - I won’t lose anything if I try.” We asked them how it feels to study in a multicultural environment. Both of them think it as a really good possibility for future, and an educational experience. They think that it’s great to meet people from all over the world and learn about their cultures. Hanna is not the only Finnish student in her study programme. She said that there are five Finnish people in her class and she thinks that there might be even more in the other English degree programmes. Jessica appreciates studying in Finland and she is also trying to learn our language. She thinks that studying in Finland is a lot different from studying in Belgium. She said that her degree programme pretty much matches the expectations she had about it before applying to it. When we asked Hanna that does the degree programme match the expectations she had before applying to it, she replied that: “I just had read from the JAMK pages some stories about people that had studied the Facility Management there, but it I really did not expect anything else than that it is going to be really


hard when all the lectures are in English. At first it of course was a little bit challenging, as I had not spoken or written in English for a year and there were a lot of new words that I did not know what they meant.”

exchange student during their studies in Laurea. Hanna said that she has thought about it, but at the moment it just doesn’t feel like something that she would do. Jessica on the other hand said that she has already applied for it.

Ups and downs

After school

We wanted to find out what the girls think that has been most challenging in their studies so far. Hanna said they have to contact a lot of different companies and it has been difficult to get interviews when you speak English. She said that some people have been really rude and refused to give an interview in English, even if they would have agreed to give the interview in Finnish. Hanna and her Finnish classmates can of course do the interviews also in Finnish, but it’s a lot harder for her other classmates who don’t speak Finnish. Jessica thinks that the most challenging part has been some of the teaching methods that are really different from what she was used to in Belgium. She also feels that there is too much group work.

After graduating from Laurea Jessica wants to go working abroad and see new places whereas Hanna thinks that she will stay in Finland, but she likes to keep her options open, because you never know where you end up in life. Of course we also had to ask the girls about their current dream job. Jessica would love to be a marketing manager in a big hotel chain or a PR in an international company. Hanna can see herself working in the cleaning field as a manager. “My dream job... At the moment my dream is to have job in a company or municipality where I could be working in the cleaning services. The fact that I want to work in the cleaning field in the management level rose up as I was working as a cleaner

Now that we have taken a look at dark side, let’s hop on to the bright side and see that the girls think that has been their best school project so far. Jessica said that the most interesting school project has been for the “Innovation of products and services” –course. They had to develop a new product for Nuuksio national park. She especially liked the part where she learned out about all the steps that one needs to consider when developing a product. In general she enjoys the marketing classes most and she also likes the fact that the school projects are for real companies and not just simulations. Hanna said that the most interesting part of her studies so far was a study unit where they learned how to use ATOPs software. It is used for dimensioning of cleaning work and also for squaring of cleaning areas. That study unit helped Hanna to get her first internship already in last summer. She was also asked to continue there until the end of last year. Hanna thinks it as a really positive thing considering her future job searching. We talk a lot about going to study abroad as an exchange student in this PAUSE international issue, so naturally we had to ask the girls if they have been thinking about going somewhere as an

in elderly home on my year off after graduating. I started to have a lot of ideas how to make things better for us, but it was impossible to do anything to those things from the working level. So at the moment my dream is to make the cleaning field better and more appreciated work field.” It seems like both of the girls enjoy studying in the English study programmes and that it can be a really educational experience. The world today is all about globalization and international working environments, so we think that it’s a good thing that our school can prepare us for it by making studying in a multicultural environment possible.

Student Exchange – The best experience you can get while studying? Text: Mari Aro / Photos: Juuso Ruotoistenmäki, Timo Glad & Mari Aro

© Juuso Ruotoistenmäki

This is the real Bali...

Do you dare to try these out?

© Juuso Ruotoistenmäki

© Timo Glad

Not too many people are willing to leave their friends and family, and go study abroad – even for a semester or two. However, there is always a few in a year who are. So what is it like to go to another country to study? Or do your internships? Is the student exchange only about the studying, or can you get more out of it than knowledge? Is it easy to go, and are there likely to be any difficulties along the way? We found out. Juuso got back from Bali in the beginning of January, where he stayed for the first semester studying in the Bali International Program on Asian Studies. He studies Service Management here in Laurea, and explains what the benefits from studying abroad were to him: “The program included studies on tourism, economics, law, history, culture and language, and all students that came from Asia Exchange –organization had to take them. I personally found the courses to be very interesting, and expanded my understanding on the business world in Far East.” He got the idea to go from his friends, and hasn’t regretted it even once. Info: Juuso Ruotoistenmäki, 26 years old. Studying Service Management. On his 3rd year. Went to Bali in Udayana University, and spent 4 months studying Asian studies.


Timo is studying Security Management in the Finnish - speaking program. He left to Taiwan to study Chinese, Economics and Political Studies and ended up having so much fun that decided to spend another semester in the same University. After spending a year abroad, how does it feel to be back in Finland? –“People were so nice in Taiwan. Even with the open staring, everybody was always willing to help me. After all that, it’s somewhat bleak to be back in Finland…“ The actual studying was not as hard and time consuming as it is in Finland. Still, he decided to focus on everything around him, after all he had always been interested in Asian cultures and now he was surrounded by it. The alternative would have been to do some courses to Laurea. “I’m not completely sure yet, but the exchange period might postpone my graduation. Still, I’m very happy I went.”

Info: Timo Glad, 27 years old. Studying Security Management, on his 3rd year. Went to Taiwan, Tamkang University and studied Chinese, Economics and Political studies. Info: Mari Aro, 25 years old, 3rd year Security Management student. Studied in the UK in the spring of 2011, at university of Leicester. I decided to go abroad after I learned it was possible to study Criminology – a subject I have always had a fascination for.

Money issues Money is one of the biggest issues many students are unsure of when thinking of going abroad. It is possible to get an increase in the student’s allowance we can apply for from Kela, but as I noticed, it’s not exactly enough. The amount students abroad get from Kela is 10€ / month. Yes, not too much. However, it’s still money, and worth applying for. I noticed that a credit card is necessary if you are planning to travel around; it is cheaper and so much easier to reserve everything online. Train

and bus tickets in the UK came up to 70% cheaper! So definitely worth it. Kela gives a loan warranty for the student loan for everybody when you apply for the students’ allowance. You should also make a contract with your own bank so that if there comes a time you need money urgently, you can just get it. It is quite difficult to try and get all the signatures and paper work handled if you are abroad. Trust me on this one. It took a lot of time even when my mom did do a lot for me, as she had my written permission for it. If you don’t want to get the loan, you don’t have to use it. Some of the organizations and programs helping out with the exchange, such as the Erasmus program, allow grants. More information about these, as well as the chance of getting some money from the school as well, can be asked from the exchange coordinators. For example Juuso, along with everyone doing their programme from our school, got a support money worth 200€/month from Laurea: “Even with my savings, the money from Kela, and from Laurea, I had to take a student loan. However, if you need


When London calls...

Oh, this is easy.

© Mari Aro

© Mari Aro

to survive with only little money, it is very easy in Indonesia, as it is a very cheap country.” I am very lucky to have such supportive parents as I do. I never had to fear what would happen if I ran out of money, as I could always call them in an emergency. That was my back up plan, which, fortunately, I didn’t have to use as I had some savings. They helped me quite a bit, so it might be a good idea.

When to apply Spring and Autumn, check your emails and LaureaIntra.

What to take into account when leaving You should start preparing for the exchange a couple of months before you go. For instance, Kela might need a month or two to process your applications for the allowance. Additionally, if you want the loan warranty from your bank, it might take time.


Other things you need to consider are how to pay your rent in Finland while you’re away. Do you want to rent it out for someone? Or would you prefer giving up the apartment? If so, where can you take your belongings and furniture, an external storage perhaps? And do you have a home insurance? How about a traveling-one? A friend of mine broke her camera after 6 weeks… The post office as well as the registry office will want to know that you’re not in the country anymore. Usually a filled in form in the post office is enough for the both. You can direct your posts to somewhere else, like your parent’s address, or to your friends place. Some countries require a visa for entry. Timo explains that it was unclear which papers and certificates he needed to send there. “At first I was told to submit a doctor’s certificate that I don’t have some specific diseases, as well as some other certificates relating to my current physical and mental health. However, I later found out that

those certificates were needed only if you were to migrate there.. So all in all, after finding out that the process of acquiring a visa was pretty simple and required submitting only the visa application form.”

Benefits The most obvious benefit is the language skills you gain while having to cope and deal with issues without having the opportunity to switch back to your mother tongue. Finnish people have problems with being a bit shy, and doubting their own skills. The fear of making mistakes is unnecessary, as you do not have to speak perfectly to be understood! Just think it the other way around: someone practicing their Finnish is perfectly understandable even if not all the words are pronounced perfectly.

year ago. And I have an urge to travel. But just realizing how different traditions affect everyday life will open the world up for you! You are bound to find courses and even subjects you cannot study in Laurea, or even in Finland, once you go abroad. This is going to give you a benefit in your field of expertise, as knowledge of something specific may grant you a job in the future. Even better, you might discover what you really want to do with your life. People going abroad are awesome! They want to make the most of it, experience and get to know new people from all around the world. You can expand your professional network, and make amazing friends. And even if you won’t find your soul mate, you’ll learn to get along with various kinds of people.

Experiences you gain and the places you see will make you appreciate life. Even if I loved to be in the UK, I value Finland much more now than a


Problems Student exchange requires a certain amount of courage, and is not for everyone. It is possible to experience many difficulties with language, money, homesickness and cultural differences. Studying in Finland usually starts at the age of 19 or 20, whereas in, for example, Italy or the United Kingdom it starts already at 18. As Laurea is a University of Applied Sciences, we have varying ages within groups, and we learn to work with everybody. The age difference, however, may be a significant issue in student accommodation, for instance. Food may cause some issues, especially if you are picky. I, for example, had problems with the local cuisine, because there was only white bread available. Timo, on the other hand, was more than excited that he got to experience the Asian food, and tells how cheap it was: “There was no point in cooking by yourself, takeaway food was so much better!” Language can cause problems if you have to find or explain something specific. Like at the health care. Especially if you are in a country where their native language is something else than what you are studying, or you just don’t know the words for different symptoms etc. However, you can always ask a friend to come along to help you. And your language skills will improve so fast you can’t even imagine. Don’t be afraid to use it. Cultural differences may frighten you, but there is no need. Just think about the people moving to Finland, they will experience the same fear, as you will. And there are always the other exchange students from other countries, so you won’t be left alone. Besides, all schools that are willing to take exchange students have prepared themselves for such issues, and do have the skill and will to interfere. Juuso explains that he didn’t experience any actual problems, however something he wanted to be aware off: “Corruption is a part of everyday life in Indonesia, and as a foreigner I sometimes wondered what if it happened to me. The police and the taxi drivers could try and take advantage of me not speaking the language properly. But luckily nothing happened”.


Juuso wants to point out that the standard of teaching might not be as you are used to: “The teachers didn’t necessarily have the same pedagogic abilities as they have in Finland. The subjects they taught were very interesting, but the methods didn’t always meet the standards. Sometimes it was hard to keep your focus.” Timo tells how he made the choices for all the courses he was interested in while still in Finland. “Most of the courses didn’t even exist. However, the system worked, as the first two weeks were ‘open lectures’ during which you could go and try the out. After the two weeks you made the decisions.” Systems can be hard to follow before actually traveling there. It’s not exactly a problem, but may make it difficult to understand how things go. For example in Leicester, even when I got the confirmations I was accepted to the courses, the truth was a bit different once I got there. It all got sorted out, though, and the experience was something to learn from. Whatever you do, don’t forget that the same laws abiding in your own country do not always apply everywhere. Be aware what the basic things are that you are and aren’t allowed to do. A good example is Singapore, where such everyday product as chewing gum is illegal.

the great experience with studying, my greatest memories are with the friends I made, the experiences we had together, and with the everyday life we spent together. As we were all alone in a foreign country, we grouped fast and formed a sort of a family. Now, a year later, I’m flying to Germany to meet my best friends, and I can’t wait!


Every study program has some specific places to go to. On top of that, there are locations a student can apply to regardless of the program they’re studying in. A good place to find out about the different locations is LaureaIntra, or alternatively set up an appointment with one of our international coordinators. Some briefings are arranged every once in a while, of which you will get information about by checking your Laurea e-mail. And, you can always ask your tutors ;)

Best memories Juuso said that the one thing he’s going to miss the most is the sunsets. For Timo, it’s the kindness of the local people. Of course some of the best memories come from the traveling and the friends, but as every exchange destination is different, you never know what to expect. Except for one thing: you’re gonna have a great time! I went to Leicester. Surprisingly, my best memories have nothing – fine, something, but NOT everything – to do with partying. I really did enjoy the different teaching methods, and how the students are responsible for quite a bit of the actual learning, but in a very different way than here in Laurea. We got the basic theory from lectures, did a lot of reading to expand our knowledge, and then had one session a week to discuss the ideas and opinions about the issues we had gone through that week. Also, we did some smaller assignments, essays and an exam, whereas in Laurea we usually only get either or. Even with

As Juuso said: ”Stop pondering whether to go, just go!” © Juuso Ruotoistenmäki

such as karjalanpiirakka (Karelian pie), or mämmi (Rye Pudding), that are delicacies known nationwide. The best internationally known part of Finnish kitchen is the one than comes from Lapland. The biggest reason for this may be reindeers, which are bred up north. Additionally, Limburger cheese with cloudberries comes from Lapland.

l a n o i t i d a r T s e h s i d h s i Finn tio tso Nuo O : s o t o Ph Tattari / s a n o o J Text:

The Finnish food culture has changed and formed into its current state over the years. It has been heavily influenced by foreign cultures, such as French and Swedish cuisines. Especially the eastern parts of Finland have been influenced by Russia and the Russian food culture.

Everyday meals in Finland

So what exactly is “traditional food”? It is defined as local or national culinary speciality. In Finland, these national specialities are Limburger cheese, many berries such as cloudberry, lingonberry, cranberry, as well as forest mushrooms. Additionally, game is very traditional, especially reindeer, elk, different birds and even bear.

The Finnish people eat plenty of vegetables and salad every day, as well as bread is highly popular. The daily gain of carbohydrates comes from various sources: pasta, rice, or potato by turns. These can be replaced with the rarer spelt or ebly. Spelt is very similar, and of the same species as wheat, whereas ebly is made of wheat germ.

It is not custom in Finland to have desserts during weeks, as it is in many other countries. The so-called “everyday meals” are mainly only main courses, even if side salad is becoming increasingly popular. Casually we may even get the dessert.


Milk products are very popular and much consumed in Finland, especially the cultured products. These include yogurt, sour cream, sour milk and smetana, which are all used as they are, or in baking. During the beginning summer the “new potatoes” arrive. They are eaten in great amounts. The other summer treat the Finns love, are strawberries. They are an essential part of Finns’ summer tradition.

Finnish dishes internationally? There are plenty of dishes that are only a custom to a certain area in Finland. Some, however, have spread across the country,

Northern Savo, an area a little north from Central Finland, is the birthplace of Finnish pastries, such as Finnish Fish Pastry (kalakukko). It is a round pastry with rye crust, and it holds fish and pork within. Eastern Finland is known for Karelian pies, Karelian hot pot and Sultsina, a certain type of bread. The traditional food at the South is Vorschmack, a dish or mashed potatoes and meat sauce originally from Eastern Europe. Häme, or the Southwest part of Finland brings sweetened potato dishes to the Finnish cuisine.

Critique on our cuisine In 2005, two European leaders, Silvio Berlusconi and Jacques Chirac criticized the Finnish Cuisine with some harsh words. These comments spread worldwide, stating that the Finnish cuisine was filled with horrible tastes. And it didn’t end there: in 2007 it was done by the world known Scottish top chef, Gordon Ramsey, with his large and rude tongue. Gordon Ramsey visited Finland at the end of 2007 on a promoting tour of his new cookbook, Gordon Ramsey’s Sunday Lunch and Other Recipes from the F

Word. On that trip he was made to taste some of the Finnish traditional dishes, and he didn’t like them. “Is this what you feed for horses and donkeys? Or do you seriously eat it yourselves. On the next day he tasted Limburger cheese, and described as follows: “Do you use this for golf, as it is so hard?” As it was served to him with the traditional cloudberries, he spit it to the plate and blurted: “Oh my God, this is disgusting!”. The worst review was given to Rye Pudding that Ramsey thought to be used as wallpaper paste: “It is like baby’s poo, so horrible!”. However, in an interview made in 2011, Ramsay withdrew his statement: “I really enjoyed my visit in Finland. The Finns are a nice and welcoming people. Your traditional dishes made my day, my favourites being the Finnish meatballs and cloudberry dessert”.

A little clarification on what these delicacies are: Karelian pie: A traditional Finnish, salty pastry with either rice porridge, porridge of hulled grain barley, or mashed potatoes in a rye crust. Karelian hotpot: The traditional recipe involves only cubed meat, alongside with onions, water, salt, pepper and laurel. The Karelian –prefix the dish got from the people, who were evacuated from Karelia during Winter- and Continuation wars. Rye Pudding: A sweet dish, usually enjoyed during Easter time. It is a sweetened porridge made out of water, malt and rye flowers.


Limburger cheese: Also known as Finnish squeaky cheese, is prepared when flux is added to heated milk, and separates the milk protein from whey. The protein paste is then formed into a disk, and baked in an oven. There, some brown spots are formed on top, and the fat from the cheese rises on top, forming a conserving layer. Finnish Fish Pastry: Usually fish and pork chop filled rye crust. It is baked in an oven for 5-7 hours. Sultsina: A certain type of bread. It is made of unfermented rye dough and semolina pudding. Also, rice pudding may be used. The dough is made by mixing the ingredients with water, which is then rolled into thin, round disks. The disks are then spread with melted butter, and piled up. Filling (porridge) is then poured onto the crust, folded in and cut into two. Vorschmack: Originally from Eastern Europe and from the Jewish tradition, Vorschmack is prepared from minced meat and anchovies or herring, onion and water. The meat may be lamb or bovine, and in some recipes even pork. It is cooked for hours in an oven, and served with baked or mashed potatoes.

Karelian hot pot


(for 4)

800g pork or beef 3 onions 10 black peppers 1-1½ teaspoons of salt water Chop the meats to cubes and put them in a casserole that has a lid. Cook them at 200 degrees for 20 minutes. Meanwhile split the onions to blocks. Add water (also the onions, salt and peppers) to the casserole so that the water just barely covers the meats. Put the lid on to the casserole and drop the oven to 125 degrees and cook the pot for about three (3) hours until the meat is crumbly.

Traditional sautéed reindeer and butter potatoes 700g reindeer meat 3 tbs butter 2 dl water 1.5 tsp salt Chop the meat lengthwise and then carve it to thin chips. Melt the butter in a pan. Add the meat little at a time and brown it. Add the water and salt. Poach it at low heat under a lid for 10-30 minutes. Serve with butter potatoes. Butter potatoes

400g well done mutton 300g raw pork-beef minced meat 2-3 onions 3 garlic cloves 1 tbsp cooking oil 100g anchovy 100g seasoned herring 3 tbsp tomato purée ¼ tsp crushed black pepper ¼ tsp minced white pepper 3 dl water Peel and chop the onions and garlic cloves. Drain the broth from the anchovies to be used later on. Mince all the meats and fishes with a multifunction machine or a meat grinder. You can also grate the meat and chop the fishes to small hash. Heat up the oil in a kettle and sauté the onions and garlic there. If you are using raw minced meat, you can cook it alongside with the onions. Make the minced meat into as small pieces as possible. Add the mutton, anchovy broth, tomato purée and spices. Add some meat broth to the mixture so that it becomes a little less runny than standard mashed potatoes. Bring it to a boil. Poach it on a mild temperature for 2-4 hours. Stir it every now and then, so that it doesn’t burn. If it feels too thick, add some meat broth. Vorschmack is ready, when you can put it on a plate and it doesn’t spread around. It should stay as a mound.

700g potatoes 2 tbsp butter 2 onions 2 dl milk 1.2 tsp salt

Serve Vorschmack with baked potatoes or rye bread alongside with Smetana, pickles and beetroots.

Boil the potatoes. Poach crushed onions in the butter, add milk and parboil. Mash the well done potatoes and add the onion milk while stirring. Add salt.


Tip: Vorschmack is also good as a filling for salty pancakes.

Finnish fish pastry 1kg gutted vendaces, or small perch 400g pork flanks salt The crust: 7,5 dl cold water 4-5 tsp salt 250g butter 1 egg 1/3 wheat flour 2/3 rye flour

Put the pastry on to a big foil sheet on a baking tray. Cook it for about 50 minutes in 275 degrees. Make sure the surface doesn’t burn. Then lower the oven to 125 degrees and fully wrap the pastry in foil. Cook it for 8-9 hours. (Even 6 hours might be enough, depending on the oven and the size of the pastry. You can find out by trying.) Wrap the ready pastry to a kitchen cloth and let it rest for 3 hours. This way the crust becomes nice and soft.

Add the salt to the water. Add the egg and part of the flours and slightly melted butter. Knead the dough and add flours so that the dough becomes properly sturdy. Roll the dough so that it’s about 1cm thick round disk. Put a layer of meat on to the center of the disk, add the fish on top of that and then the rest of the meat. Also add a little salt to the meat and fish. Wrap the dough edges on top of the meat and fish. Thicken the dough seams using cold water and make the surface smooth.


How to...

- Tips for surving in Finland! Text: Inka Kataja / Illustration: HSL (travel card) & Heli Koivulahti

This semester our school got once again new Finnish students as well as international students. Laurea Leppävaara campus offers great opportunities to get to know people from all over the world, and for the international students to familiarize themselves with this weird culture of ours. We put together a few useful tips, especially for the exchange students, but why not for everyone as well. All the websites mentioned in this article are also available in English.

For some, the Finnish culture may be nothing than what they are used to. Firstly, one has to learn to understand Finns, and Finns should acknowledge their own ways of behavior. Many Finns may seem rude for people from different cultures, but mostly they are just hesitant to speak English. One should keep in mind never to be offended if someone doesn’t seem very interested in having small talk, or even tries to avoid contact. In general Finnish people are friendly and easy going; it may just take a little time to get to know them. After “the ice is broken” Finns are extremely good company to hang out and party with! Food in Finland is considered expensive, especially in restaurants. Compared to this, school meal is very affordable for students. With only a few Euros one can get a full meal: main course, side salad, bread and drink. This is possible as Kela (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland) provides meal subsidy for higher education students; by showing Kela’s meal subsidy card or a valid student ID one gets a student discount in subsidized student restaurants. This is good to keep in mind; students can eat for a low price also elsewhere than in their school’s restaurant. The list of the subsidized restaurants can be found in Kela’s website From the Websites, one can check if, for example during a shopping day, there


is a student restaurant close by – and afford to eat well after most of the money is gone! Another point about food is that usually everything is more expensive is small stores than in huge supermarkets. One should make some price comparisons if there is a desire to save money. Food can be found cheaply if the due date is close from any stores, big or small. One can recognize these kinds of packages from orange or yellow stickers, stating that the product is in -30% discount. These are good especially if you have a freezer in your apartment. Also, public transport prices in Finland are pretty high. Luckily for students it is possible to get a 50 % discount on their Travel Card. The nearest place to buy a Travel Card and register the student group there is in Citizen’s Office in Leppävaara. It is found in Leppävaara library right next to Sello shopping centre. One only needs an ID and a discount ticket application stamped in our Student Affairs Office, or a blue SAMOK student card. After all this is done, one can upload either season or value in to the card, depending on the amount of traveling. For example if one travels daily around the Helsinki Metropolitan Area, the wisest and cheapest thing is to upload regional season for as many days as desired. If one travels a lot mainly inside Espoo region, it is

smart to upload internal season. With season on the Travel Card, one can travel as much as needed within the days the season is valid for, usually 30 days. If one doesn’t travel daily, it is possible to upload value, a certain amount of money on the Travel Card, and buy regional or internal tickets with it when needed. One can also have both, season and value, uploaded in to the card. More specific information can be read on HSL (Helsinki Region Transport) website Sometimes it may be difficult to know how to get from one place to another in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. An extremely helpful tool is Journey Planner (Reittiopas in Finnish), which can be found at It shows the fastest and the smartest ways to get where you want and by using whatever vehicles possible. Another useful service is HSL Omat lähdöt timetable service. There one can search for timetables from bus stops and for example check when a certain bus passes your home’s nearest bus stop. This is a helpful tool, which prevents you from ever being late from buses again. This service can be found at

take a bus or even walk from Pasila railway station. More information can be found from www. The Helsinki Metropolitan Area Reuse Centre is a great place to find all kinds of items in good condition as well. It has three stores in Helsinki, and one in both Espoo and Vantaa. For a low price one can, for example, buy books, containers, clothes and furniture, and also bring own excessive items there. More information can be found on www. Flea markets can be tracked down by Googling. Last by not least a simple tip which might save people from a lot of trouble: always be prepared for that anytime anything might fall down from the sky, no matter what season it is. One should always keep an umbrella with; it is a sure thing that once it is left home, it starts raining.

Especially for those who are only spending a little time in Finland, it is clever to buy secondhand goods instead of new and expensive ones. Several flea markets are found in the Helsinki Metropolitan area. One can find almost anything from there. Valtteri at Vallilan makasiinit is a great example of a big flea market. It is open every Wednesday and all the weekends. One can get there by bus or tram from Helsinki city center, or


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