Alumni Ambassador Juuso Leivonen: Hobbies and working at a student union have marked a strong start to my career
When and what did you study at Aalto University School of Business?
I started my studies in 2001 and graduated in 2008. I studied international business as my major, and economics, accounting and the Information Technology Programme (ITP) as my minors.
In which positions have you worked after graduation?
My work career is not the most common career path of an economist. From the student association KY, I switched to SYL (National Union of University Students in Finland) to participate in education policy making. After the graduation, I worked for a while at SEFE (Finnish Association of Business School Graduates), where we facilitated the creation of Suomen kauppakorkeakoulut ry (ABS, Association of Business Schools Finland) in order to further strengthen the cooperation of Finnish business schools. I then switched to work as the Secretary General at ABS, which is my current position.
Thoughts on studying?
Afterwards, it is easy to say that the most permanent thing I have received from my studies is the analytical way of perceiving the world around us, based on numbers and the logic of economics. When you discuss with people from other fields, you can see how strongly the field makes us wear a certain kind of ”glasses” through which we view the world.
School of Business Alumni Ambassador Juuso Leivonen
Besides all the fun and spending time together, you gain experience on leadership, cooperation and organizing things.
How do different hobbies and activities affect one’s career path?
In my case, the hobbies and working at a student union have marked a strong start of my career. Even though you would not continue to do them later on as your work, through the different hobbies and activities at student unions you gain lots of experience, which you will not get only by studying. Besides all the fun and spending time together, you gain experience on leadership and cooperation, different people, organizing things and taking responsibilities. Through work experience, you get an idea of what kinds of positions there are available and what would interest you.
Your advice for the students who reflect on their studies?
Think about what inspires you and what makes you happy. Do not study something just because it is popular among other students, but something that really interests and challenges you.
Furthermore, you might want to think about different themes and phenomena, than specific study tracks or subjects. Not all in studying is always fun and exciting, and neither it is in the working life, but you will have the energy to do everything when you understand how these relate to the bigger picture.
What are the current issues at your workplace?
The business schools are taking steps towards a more networking-like method of cooperation, as all schools are carrying out the possibility for the non-business students to complete a business minor through online courses. These kinds of small steps from a single organization model into a cooperative multi-organizational model can be seen elsewhere, too, and it is great that the business schools are at the forefront in this.
You act as an Alumni Ambassador at Aalto University School of Business. What does being an alumna mean to you?
On one hand, it means having many colleagues, partners, friends, family, memories and shared moments. On the other hand, being an alumnus is a way of thinking and something that stays with you in the working life, and which helps you perceive the world.
Get to know Juuso Leivonen’s career path more closely on LinkedIn!
Read more about the School of Business alumni cooperation and about the other Alumni Ambassadors who, like Juuso Leivonen, are involved in developing the School’s alumni activities: https://www.aalto.fi/school-of-business/alumni-of-the-school-of-business.