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Rovaniemi universities

378 int’l students enrol in autumn session

Published : 03 Sep 2018, 19:33

  DF Report by Ibukun Emmanuel Asiyanbi

New international students in front of the University of Lapland. DF Photo.

Rovaniemi welcomes about 378 international students enrolled in the autumn session at the University of Lapland and the Lapland University of Applied Sciences, the two major tertiary educational institutes of the city.

Coming from various countries around the world, exchange and degree students make a positive contribution to the cultural diversity of the city’s academic environment. With the previous years’ students, the city now has about 1,000 foreign students.

International students can come in either as exchange students or as full degree students, with the institutions offering a wide range of courses for students to choose from. 

A total of 155 exchange students would be arriving at the University of Lapland for the new academic session while 20 students would be arriving for the degree programmes.

Jani Suokanerva, the advisor at the internationalisation office of the University of Lapland said international students come mostly from European countries such as Spain, Germany, Italy and France. A handful of students also come from China, Japan and South Korea

“International students are very important for cultural diversity, as it enriches the Finnish culture, considering the small size of the city’s population. Through these international students we get glimpses of what is happening in other parts of the world. They also bring their own ideas and values in terms of teaching methods and we get feedback on that. It also allows our teachers to re-evaluate their teaching style based on the feedback and improve the standard of teaching and learning,” Suokanerva told Daily Finland.

At Lapland University of Applied Sciences (Lapin AMK) with Rovaniemi, Tornio and Kemi campuses, 124 students would be arriving for the exchange programmes while 79 students would be arriving for the degree programmes this autumn, university officials said. They would be coming for exchange studies from different parts of the world including France, Holland, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Slovakia, Switzerland, Russia and a handful from Asia.

Most of the international students usually stay in dormitories of Domus Arctica-Säätiö such as Kuntotie, Rantavitikka, Asemarinne and others located near the campus and surrounded by nature. A group of students and tutors from the two universities are actively offering help to the newly enrolled students to settle down and give answers to their enquiries.

Some of the international students said they chose Finland because of its famous high-quality education system. And, in spite of the cold winter and the upcoming long dark days, all the international students seem to be excited for their very first Arctic experience in Rovaniemi.

This has been the trend for years now, as the Lapin AMK gets almost the same number of students on a yearly basis. A five-day orientation of the exchange students is scheduled to start on August 22.

International students make Rovaniemi, the second largest tourism city in Finland after Helsinki, even more cosmopolitan.

Besides, as in 2017, more than 1,541 foreign immigrants live in Rovaniemi. Refugees account for about 20 per cent of the foreigners living in Rovaniemi. Russians comprise the largest group of the city’s foreign immigrants, followed by Chinese, Swedish, Iraqis, Afghans, Vietnamese, Syrians, Ukrainians, and Bangladeshis, among others.

This allows for a wider range of cultural exchange which places the city on an international pedestal and a place to reckon with.