Posts in the exchange students category

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.

Tampere Art Museum Moominvalley is a museum devoted to original works by writer and artist, Tove Jansson. Its unique collection comprise around 2,000 works including sketches, drawings and miniatures of the most famous Finnish characters.

With Moominvalley closing its doors on the 30th of October, 2016 to become Moomin Museum in the spring of 2017, we didn’t want our exchange students to miss the opportunity to see their beloved characters before going back to their home countries. Furthermore, we set up a meeting outside the entrance of the museum on Saturday, 15th of October and together, we not only explored Moominvalley, but also the exhibition “In Search of Humanity” showcasing sculptures, medal art, drawings and painting by pioneering Finnish female sculptor, Essi Renvall.

Anni Chen from China is doing her degree in International Business at Tampere University of Applied Sciences and she’s one of the attendees of the event. A big fan of the Moomins, Anni sent us some impressions and photos.

"We went to Tampere Art Museum and Moominvalley, which was so great because, even though I've stayed here in Tampere for more than one year, I still haven't really visited there yet and I am also a big fan of the Moomins. The sculptures in the art museum were so beautiful and vivid, we took some pictures of them but when we went to Moominvalley, we weren't allowed to take photos which was a pity because Moomins are so cute. However, there was a place where we could take photos together and I even got to hold a big Moomin stuffed toy! That was super cute!"












Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Anni Chen & Andruta Ilie


TAMK Ambassadors come from various degree programmes and national backgrounds, allowing them to showcase the TAMK student experience from many different viewpoints and create a truly international experience for visitors.

Let's start with introducing you to Tengfei Liu, an exchange student from China who studies Paper Technology at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. Here's how Tengfei describes himself:
"I am an outgoing person, fond of getting to make new friends. I really like TAMK and appreciate this great chance to be an ambassador of TAMK. Let me show you around and introduce you to our amazing TAMK. Are you ready?"



From China also comes Dandan Hou, another one of our exchange students. She really enjoys her stay in Finland and the beautiful nature here. 
"Hi! I'm Dandan Hou and I study Chemical and Process Engineering at TAMK. I really enjoy my stay in Finland. I love forests and nature. I like hiking, running and sleeping. Sometimes I go hiking in the forest with my friends. I really enjoy it. But I have never been to the forest alone, because it’s easy for me to get lost."



Our next ambassador is Qinning Wan and he's also an exchange student from China. Qinning has a background in Applied Chemistry back in his home university and he chose to study Paper Technology with us. You could say Qinning has succeeded in adopting a Finnish lifestyle, given his hobbies: 
"I like playing musical instruments and watching drums TV in my spare time. Besides, swimming is also one of my habits, which is a really exciting workout for keeping fit. I am pretty interested to be a TAMK ambassador and introduce specific information about TAMK to those who need it."


We'll stick for a bit to the biggest continent in this world, but this time with a different country, Vietnam. Linh Nguyen is doing her degree in Energy and Environmental Engineering and she is on a mission:
"I am a 19-year-old cute Vietnamese girl. I love forests, animals and TAMK! TAMK is my sweet home. I want to tell everyone about its beauty! Let's 'TAMK' together!"


Yen Bui comes from Vietnam as well and she is an International Business Tutor Student. She describes herself as a catholic and daydreamer and is very passionate about dancing:
"I love dancing the most. Hip-hop dance is the best thing I ever do in my life. It’s never wrong to say that music can help people to heal their souls. I have started dancing when I was 14, and from that time on, music has always been my best friend."


We're getting closer to home, but not until we greet one of our neighbours. Ivan Denisenko is a first-year student of the Energy and Environmental Engineering double degree programme. He's originally from Vyborg, Russia and he's the right guy to contact for musical collaborations.
"Active and willing to support different kind of social work, I decided to join the TAMK Ambassadors team to bring some of my ideas to life and also help TAMK with my own labour and enthusiasm. More than that, to me it's a great opportunity to get to know many people, both those who are with me in this team and those who I will help as part of my duties. I also write music, sing and play the guitar, so if you have any interesting musical cooperation ideas or need a person for a band, contact me at any time."


We now reached home with our last, but not the least TAMK Ambassador, Elina Eskola. Elina is a Business Information Systems student who enjoys travelling, exploring new places and meeting new people. And she has quite an unusual and interesting favourite hobby...
"I love spending my time either playing, reading or doing various different sports. Aerial fitness is my favourite."



Best of luck to our TAMK Ambassadors and we can’t wait to hear more about their duties and achievements!

Read more here:




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 a picturesque location beside the Tammerkoski rapids, Vapriikki is a museum centre hosting a dozen exhibitions each year, with varied themes, including history, technology, and natural sciences. Vapriikki is also home to the Natural History Museum of Tampere, the Media Museum Rupriikki, the Mineral Museum, the Finnish Hockey Hall of Fame, the Doll Museum and the Postal Museum.

And what better way to spend a Friday afternoon if not with a museum visit? Especially that on Fridays, between 15:00 and 18:00, the museum is free of charge. Our students said yes without hesitations. Together we explored the Postal Museum: Secret Mail of Finnish Jaeger Troops and two more exhibitions: “Narrative Thread-the 10th TEXO triennial of textile art” and “Hurriganes: Rock Revolution in Finland”.

Le Thanh Tung, a first-year student from Vietnam doing his degree in Environmental Engineering at TAMK, attended all our events so far and here's what he thought about the museum:
"My first impression of the museum is that is well-organised. Secondly, is keeping the balance between old and new with the exhibitions. Lastly, the museum is using a lot of modern technology, which is impressive. It was a really interesting experience and I had a wonderful time there."

Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Le Thanh Tung & Andruta Ilie

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.

Although we were planning to take our students to pick the last berries from the woods for our third event, we had to change the plan in the last minute due to poor weather conditions. So we stayed in Y-Campus and had an open discussion about TAMK and Tampere. According to our students, the international atmosphere at Tampere University of Applied Sciences is so great, that a three-month exchange period is too short. Some other pros and cons were written down as you will see in the image below.


Text & photos: Andruta Ilie

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.

First event, “Board games & baking pulla” took place in Tamko, on Friday, 16.09. Here’s the feedback we received from one of our international students from Mexico:

"Our first Finnish activity is done! We had a really pleasant time baking pulla and having fun with board games. We even invented some new games as well. The activity took place at Tamko and there were students from Vietnam, China, Uruguay, Spain, Costa Rica, Japan, Greece and other countries. 

First, we introduced ourselves and made teams to start preparing for the recipe that Mirja gave us. Each team followed the instructions and others were just experimenting. But in the end, we had the same dough for pulla. Before continuing baking, we had to leave the dough rest for an hour. Meanwhile, Mirja created a "Game of Names" due to the fact that each of us had special and difficult names to pronounce, apart from the easy ones. We laughed about it and got back to the kitchen, where the next step was to give a form to the dough and get some pullas into the oven. While we waited for them to bake, we played board games such as Bang!,Twister and a new one invented by Mery, one of the students from Uruguay.

You ever know what opportunities you will miss if you don't get out of your comfort zone and join our next Finnish activity. We would be glad to meet you! Save the date for the next activity! I'm sure you will have a great time!"

Gabriela Velázquez, IB exchange student from Escuela Bancaria y Comercial (EBC), Mexico

Let's start!

Board games

Board games1Chess



Photos: Mirja Onduso


Picture 1

How can it be ended?

We have been living in Tampere for three months and a half. It could seem a long time but in fact we still have the feeling that out first day was yesterday. How can it be possible? Maybe the reason is that we have been experiencing new situations all time, meeting new people and challenging ourselves with different cultures and different languages. We think everything we’ve lived here has made us grow as persons, which before embarking on this adventure we didn’t thought about it!


Picture 2

Party of Vappu

We know that we are not Finnish but obviously we would like to enjoy typical events from Finland or from Tampere like Party of Vappu. Because of that, all exchange students decided to meet in front of the Tampere’s river, lying on the grass and to watch how new university students are being submerged in the river’s cold water.

What surprised us most was the fact that at the end of the festival all students who organized the event began to collect and clean the park to leave it as it was before any party. In Spain these things do not happen…


Picture 3


Thanks to our Erasmus we have had to opportunity of travelling with marvellous people! One of the incredible trips was Tallinn. It wasn’t the longest one, in fact it was the shortest one, we only spend one night there, but it was enough for many things to happen, starting for the ferry problems, as we had lost the first one because we were at the wrong terminal twice. But at the end we reached Tallinn and we had so much fun during that night there and the journey back to Tampere.


Picture 4

Someone said sauna and ice swimming?


Of course we couldn’t go from Finland without trying the famous sauna and ice swimming! So thanks to our teachers from TAMK we had the opportunity to do it and made our farewell party.

At the beginning the idea of swim in the cold water from the lake of Tampere scare us a little bit but after getting into the hot sauna and sweat a lot we need at least deep us in the cold and good water. So for us it was a great experience, even some of exchange students repeat it more than once! It will be another thing that we will miss when we’ll be back home…


Picture 5

We are going to miss you

Of course we are going to miss you. We are going to miss your lakes, your sunrises, your sunsets, your cold, your forests, your beers and Karl Fazer chocolates. And I remark on Karl Fazer, probably chocolate with milk and strawberries was our favourite one.

Tampere has been the nucleus of our Erasmus and our home for some months. After being travelling for some days and because of that being very tired, we didn’t thought in returning back to Spanish home we were just thinking in returning back to our flat in Tampere, our new home.

Doesn’t anyone share the opinion that have had the feeling that Tampere was home is not the perfect consequence of having had a perfect Erasmus?


Picture 6

Tampere in our retinas

Now we are back in Barcelona, with our family and lifelong friends. Many of these people think we were brave to undertake this wonderful experience and opportunity because they think that these four months we have just travelled, went out for party and made friends around the world.

But only those who have lived the experience as we will know how difficult it has been to solve those problems in college, practices and accommodation in a language that is not ours. Nor they know what it was for us when we saw photos of family and friends having fun, realizing all the moments that we were missing.

But time passes quickly and we realize that all problems have solutions, they are not afraid to take the bus because we use Google maps; we also learn to go to the supermarket and buy only those things we need. We discover that every day is a new adventure.

The most important thing about this experience is that all these challenges can’t be achieved without the help of those special people who’re recognizing throughout the adventure. They end up being your family. Thanks to all these people we are more humble, generous and open to different cultures and ways of thinking.

Time goes too fast, we have learned to make the most of every day, see new places, try different food, but now we are already adapted have to say goodbye. Goodbye to our new friends, favourite places, food we liked, all the memories we have built…

At this point in our Erasmus, we wander among so many feelings that we do not know how to express them. We still longing for people waiting for us at home, more with each passing second. But also we started to miss the new friends that we have not yet fired. Many probably will not ever see them again and the feeling of helplessness that generates is so strong that sometimes do not know if we want or prefer to follow Erasmus forever. In the retina we have stuck the most beautiful corners of Tampere, Helsinki and Tallinn, in the ear a couple of dialects… and in the heart, them. Because during the Erasmus we realize that building our unique experience are not the most beautiful cities on the planet, parties or approved by the face (also good) but the people with whom you share…

So everything depends on us to continue to build new memories in different cities with our new family. Therefore this is not a goodbye but a see you soon!

Kiitos paljon Suomi!


Text and photos: Georgina Ros Branson and Elisabet Ferrando Sanchez

Tampere on kaunis

1. kuva

It’s the end of my first period in TAMK and Tampere and I can say I’m very comfortable here. I’m so comfortable that I have not even travelled to Helsinki yet.

But why move when I can make so many things here? Just getting out of my room and being able to be walking on a lake in five minutes is magical for me. We don’t have lakes where I live and let alone big amounts of frozen water.

I’ve discovered many beautiful places in Tampere and I’m ready to see more of this winter wonderland. Hopefully I’ll go to Helsinki next week and I will certainly visit some smaller cities and towns.

2. kuva


2. kuva viereen

But the lake next to Lapinkaari is my absolute favourite place, I’ve seen such beautiful skies there. And of course the sauna next to the lake is a plus.

3. kuva      3. kuva viereen

I’m comfortable with the place and also with the people. I like people who don’t talk much, but honestly finns are not as cold as they think they are (but their weather is). Yesterday an old woman laughed with me at the supermarket when I accidentally pressed a button in a children’s book and it started to make an odd noise. Finns are as nice as everything else in Finland, not including food, drinks and cinema ticket prices.

4. kuva

This place is very nice in winter and I can’t wait to see how it is in spring. On the other hand, I don’t want spring to come because that would mean that my time for leaving this city would be even closer.

P.S. Kudos to the munnki! 10/10 would eat 10 of them everyday.

5. kuva loppuun


Text and photos: Idoia Davila



Flying high

On my way to Tampere

Hi, I am a student from Germany, arrived in Tampere at 1 August. I landed in Helsinki and took the Express Bus. Because this is my first time in Finland, anyway in a Scandinavian country I was really excited. During the drive with the bus I noticed the landscape, there are big differences to my home country. Much more woods and so less cities. My first real contact to a Finn was the guy from Airbnb, by whom I booked two nights to stay. Against all odds, which was formed from guidebooks I read before, he was really open minded and talkative. He picked me up at the bus station, brought me to his apartment and then walked with me through the city center and took me to Café Europa. I heard from the prices for alcohol before, anyway I was shocked.




The next day I explored Tampere on my own, checked how to get to TAMK for the Summer School starting the next day. My feelings about Tampere were pretty good. I thought, that it is a lovely city and I will enjoy the stay here. To orientate was easy. From TAMK back to the city center I wanted to take the bus, but nobody told me that I have to wave at the bus drivers. Second shock! – as the bus just went past. In my own town the bus still stops always, if somebody is waiting at the bus stop.


At my first day in Tampere I explored lovely places in the town and also learned more about differences from my home country. Prepared with this knowledge I began the Basics of Finnish Course the next day, looking forward to learn more about Tampere.

On the waves of Pyhäjärvi

On the waves of Pyhäjärvi

Text and photos: Vanessa Rodewald

It’s that time of year again – applications for student exchange in the academic year 2015-16 are flying into the database by the minute (deadline 1st Feb), chat service is busy with all sorts of chatter, and parter universities materials are available for browsing in the main lobby. Info desks have blasted videos from partner universities in the lobbies and all the buzz is positive.

Some leaflets are still printed... not everything is online!

Some leaflets are still printed… not everything is online!

TAMK has been steadily growing the percentage of students who spend an exchange semester or a training period abroad during their studies. Most students go to Europe through the Erasmus+ programme, but some venture even further. The only unconquered territory is Antarctica, but that may be only a matter of time…

Rhodesnow is just one of the companies that visit TAMK or promote training placements for students. With an impressive 1000 openings for trainees in the summer of 2015, they held a presentation to a keen audience at TAMK today. The process is quite easy and flexible, so why not spend a summer where the sun always shines? TAMK supports students with Erasmus+ grants, if the training is accepted as part of your degree!

Did you miss the presentation and would like to secure a training placement? Check out the flyer and email Ms Mikulenaite at

More info on grants and applying for TAMK students HERE (study abroad) and HERE (training abroad)

Text & Pictures:
Piri Hiltunen, TAMK International Services