Posts in the Exchange studies category

TAMK Summer School 2017 Wrap-up

TAMK Summer School 2017 concluded on 18.08.2017.

On 07.08.2017 we were thrilled to kick off TAMK Summer School 2017, welcoming students from Germany, Portugal, the Palestinian Territory, Poland, Hungary, Singapore, the Republic of Korea, Canada and the United States to Tampere and TAMK.

Nineteen students spent two weeks participating in an intensive Basics of Finnish course, studying language and culture with lecturer Sini Knuutila, as well as taking part in a social programme of free-time activities. The programme included trips to Flowpark and the Särkänniemi amusement park and a kickbiking tour that ended at the Kaupinoja sauna. The Finnish food tasting event was of particular interest, giving our students a glimpse into some traditional Finnish delicacies – such as karelian pastries, mushroom pie, blueberry pie and smoked reindeer – and sparking interesting discussion on various national cuisines.

A few days into the course, students were already putting their Finnish skills to use in everyday activities in and around Tampere. Summer School students who will be staying at TAMK as exchange and degree students over the coming autumn semester highlighted the advantage of having come to Finland early to learn the basics of the language and get their bearings in the city. The course inspired interest in further Finnish language studies and additional demand for Finnish courses for exchange students. Students were eminently satisfied with the Summer School, the majority indicating that the course had been a valuable addition to their studies as well as enjoying the participatory nature of the education given during the course.

The TAMK Summer School team wishes our Summer School students a successful Autumn semester in their exchange and degree studies!

Text: Johannes Paavola

Pictures: Saara Lehtonen, Johannes Paavola, Márton Merész, Essi Sirén

TAMK Summer School Reflections

Joining the TAMK summer school is definitely one of the best decisions I’ve made. Before arriving, I did not know what to expect at all. Coming from the other side of the world, I did not know much about Finland except for the wonderful nature landscape. Friends asked me why I would go to Finland and made comments like “It is so cold and dark there, people are very reserved and it is impossible to make local friends!” After 2 weeks in Tampere, I have only met incredibly wonderful, helpful and sincere Finns. They are definitely the most genuine people I have ever met.

The summer school combining Finnish lessons and free time activities definitely helped in bringing orientation to the city, learning a lot about the culture, food and people here. This is especially helpful before the term starts, so that one can have a smooth start when the term begins. I’m particularly intrigued by the Sauna culture, because it seems to be not just a place to sweat, but a meet up point for friends. It is really a way of life! I was amazed how people were talking so much in the Sauna as if they would do at the marketplace. I also enjoyed very much the Finnish food tasting, to have the most Finnish food all in one plate!

Thank you very much for organizing. I had an amazing time 🙂

Text and photo: Isabell Koh

My First Days in Finland

I am Sarah Bali, a Palestinian Media student that got accepted in the exchange program at TAMK for one semester.  As I got here, I started exploring the city of Tampere and was astonished by the breathtaking beauty of it.

It is true that I faced many obstacles such as getting lost in the woods and having drunk people talk to me in the streets for the first time, always getting on the wrong bus and getting cold a lot, however the Finnish class and getting to know all of these amazing people from all over the world made things easier for me. I’m now a person that knows a lot of places in Tampere and I have a lot of new friends. I hope the rest of my journey here is going to be as nice as this start!

 

 

Text and photos: Sarah Bali

Amanda Toler Woodward and Kimberly Steed-Page from MSU together with Aura and Kirsi from TAMK

Text and photos: Kirsi Jokipakka

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A small delegation from TAMK, Kirsi Jokipakka and Aura Loikkanen, had a chance to visit Michigan State University at the end of May. Two-day program included visits to MSU support services and learning environments. MSU is among the world’s top 100 universities and it has over 200 programs in undergraduate and graduate level but it also offers various pre-professional study opportunities. MSU is also one of the world’s top research universities and students are linked to research and development activities although their studies. TAMK has co-operation with MSU in the field of social work.

One of the focus areas of MSU is to support the regional development but also global responsibility is an important matter. At MSU students have great study abroad opportunities and in addition to this the services for international students and scholars are well organized. MSU’s 25 international institutes, centers and units collaborate with academic colleges across campus to help the students to develop their global competencies.

The student services of MSU are broad and divided into four parts. Services include Student Affairs and Service Operations, Health, Wellness & Safety, Identity & Affinity, Transition, Leadership and Experiential Learning. Staff members’ role is to support students throughout their studies. At MSU the student life is active and students are well-integrated into university community. Support services are visible and easily accessible. The tuition fees are the most important income for MSU and therefore degree-seeking students are vital for the university.

During the visit it became clear that MSU is committed to take good care of its students. It is important that the university offers good-quality education and research but also the student life should meet the needs of the present and future students.

Office of Cultural & Academic Transitions

Entrance hall of the Student Affairs and Services building

 

 

 

 

 

Got the bag?

This autumn, TAMK incoming exchange students have received a bag for a farewell gift. Bags are hanging on the shoulders of 120 students who spent their Autumn 2016 at TAMK. The idea was to give them something lasting and useful that would remind them of us and that they are always welcome back. Also, the bags spread the word of TAMK all around the world!

Marta, Lucia, Jaime and Arga from Spain show how the bags looks like.

Marta, Lucia, Jaime and Arga from Spain show how the bags look like.

 

Text and photo: Marika Kyllönen

 

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

Our Finnish activities have reached their end for this year and we wanted our exchange students to take some sweet memories with them back home. Literally and figuratively speaking. For our last event, Mirja and I brought gingerbread in different shapes and a gingerbread house to her office. Many students showed up that day to decorate the cookies and the winner of the house was Cong Nguyen, who says:

“Last Friday afternoon, I walked past the social counselor’s office. Fortunately, it was the time for Finnish activities and many students were already decorating gingerbread cookies. I joined in and decorated a pine tree (it was very beautiful!). I took part in the lottery for the gingerbread house and won it! The gingerbread was so good and it was a great evening.”

Mirja and I would like to thank all our students who joined Finnish activities at TAMK and to all staff members who supported us!

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Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Mirja Onduso

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

We all love giving and receiving cards for Christmas. But what about making them? We tempted our international students with glögi and joulutorttu and invited them to show their artistic skills and make Christmas cards from scratch.

Mirja and I were both impressed with what came out of their hands. This time, it was her turn to tell us about the festive atmosphere in her room:

"Christmas certainly means different things in different countries: while most students draw Christmas trees and decorations, stars, snow flakes, gifts, snowmen, Santa Claus, elves  – one student draws an elephant and another one camels! The Japanese students are professional in drawing Moomins. No matter where we come from, may Christmas bring peace and love to us all! Hyvää joulua!/ Merry Christmas!"

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Text: Andruta Ilie
Photos: Mirja Onduso

 

 

TAMK, TUT and UTA organized an Independence Day Reception on 1st of December 2016 in TAMK main campus. This is a yearly tradition and every year one of the universities have the main responsibility to organize this event. Now it was TAMK’s turn.

This year the programme included a violin concert organized by Tampere Music Academy but also the participants had a chance to hear speeches ´How Finns Celebrate Independence Day´ and ´My Finland – In Eye of an International Student´. But the most amazing moment during the reception was when all the guests sang together the national anthem of Finland ´Maamme´!

Solveig Parikka and Tuomas Turriago playing Jean Sibelius Violin concerto op. 47

Solveig Parikka and Tuomas Turriago playing Jean Sibelius Violin concerto op. 47

The Finnish Indepence Day is a national holiday which is celebrated annually on 6th of December. It marks the Declaration of Independence from the Russian empire by the Finnish Parliament in 1917. The Independence Day celebration is nowadays a vibrant occasion with the blue and white colours of the Finnish flag being proudly displayed. An Independence Day tradition is for Finnish families to light two candles in the windows of their homes in the evening.

It’s extremely important that foreign students and staff members learn as much as possible Finnish culture during their stay in Tampere. Therefore, this kind of event is absolutely worth organizing! This year 130 international quests took part in the Independence Day Reception and enjoyed the solemn but also relaxed atmosphere of the reception.

Students standing in line for Photo Booth.

Students standing in line for Photo Booth.

 

Text: Kirsi Jokipakka, Head of International Services, TAMK

Photos: Kirsi Jokipakka, Head of International Services, TAMK and Tarja Kononov, International Coordinator, TAMK

 

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

Another week of hard studying is over. We brush off the dust of our collars and we are ready to relax at Kaupinoja sauna. Situated by lake Näsijärvi, the public sauna is open almost everyday and counts around 57 000 visits yearly. Winter months are the busiest. During them, the water is cold but the sauna is hot. What matters most is to listen to your own body. The regular way is to plunge first and last in the cold water, but everybody should choose where they sit in the sauna and for how long they swim, as long as it makes them feel good.

“Kaupinoja sauna was nice. There is a one very big sauna where everyone gathers and outside, a long staircase into the lake. However, the water was so cold that I only managed to go in twice. Gladly, they have a grill outside so Mirja grilled some delicious sausages to keep us warm.” are Daan’s thoughts (Daan Krijnen is one of our exchange students from the Netherlands).

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Text: Andruta Ilie
Photos: Mirja Onduso

 

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

With only a few weeks left until Christmas, the atmosphere at TAMK is getting festive and the snow outside is of great help too. Therefore, we thought it would be the best time for our international students to learn how to bake Joulutorttu, a delicious Christmas pastry in shape of a pinwheel with a middle filled with prune jam.

32 hungry students showed up at TAMKO’s kitchen and altogether, 128 Joulutorttu were baked and eaten. By far, the biggest number of students we had during our events, until now. It felt wonderful and rewarding to see them sharing the tasks with a smile upon their faces and waiting patiently to get the pastries out of the oven. Here’s what Ruotong Xu, Chinese exchange student, told us after the event:

"Such a fine day! I joined this lovely activity to bake Joulutorttu: windmill-like pastry. Upon my coming in the room, I felt the warm atmosphere here. So many pretty people with smiling faces, were all busy with their hands working. I just went in and found my place, then threw myself into the work. Firstly, I cut the dough into two pieces and put the jam in the middle, then made it like a windmill. Easy and funny job! After a few minutes, I smelt the flavour of the baked pastry and felt excited to see them because some of them were made by me! Yummy, yummy, I like them! After the baking, a funny game involving fighting for the chairs began. My heart was beating fast at that time because I was extremely excited. I forgot all the worries after this beautiful day! Thank you for organizing this activity!"

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Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Laura Wirth, Nao Oikawa and Andruta Ilie