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Melina Nummi enhances student mobility between Unite! universities

Melina Nummi is the planning officer for international mobility at Aalto University. She also works within the Unite! University Alliance developing student mobility and building joint mobility services for the seven Unite! universities. We interviewed Melina for the Let's Unite! interview series presenting the Unite! community.
Photo of Melina Nummi.

Let's Unite! - Get to know Melina Nummi

Melina's interest in enabling internationalisation for everyone, comes from her own background as she has studied and worked outside Finland for quite many years before starting at Aalto. And perhaps therefore, it is not only something she does for work, but also something that she likes to have, in some way or another as a part of her everyday life. For instance through volunteering in different projects related to internationalisation. In addition, she really loves hiking and spending time in the nature. For her, the best way to recharge her batteries is to spend some days in the middle of nowhere, sleep in a tent and with a limited access to any technology.  

What future Unite! project are you particularly excited about and why do you think it is important for Unite!'s strategy?

I’m very excited about getting the virtual exchange going! I believe that we Unite! universities have so much potential for creating innovative courses by combining our expertise and know-how through virtual exchange and getting our students to cooperate with one another online. This would also be more inclusive and ensure that everyone regardless of their situation in life, will be given the chance to get an international touch and aspects into their degree. I am very much hoping that this would also inspire the students to start creating virtual cooperation projects by themselves as well.

I think setting up virtual exchanges is important for Unite! as it also allows the Unite! network to increase the amount of students taking part in our activities. These courses could also be used for creating learning content which can provide our students the required skills to be able to contribute to rapidly changing demands in the European job market by utilising the expertise we have in the different Unite! universities. 

In addition collaborative virtual exchange courses can give our students more tools to be able to develop solutions for the various challenges we are facing by allowing our students to come together to study and work on projects on more regular basis online and without the hassle of travelling.

What is happening in your task forces? Something interesting to share with the Unite! community? 

We are working on the Unite! internship concept as well as starting with the virtual exchange topic more in depth. So hopefully soon we will be able to start piloting with one or two virtual exchange courses and then we will be able to tell more.

From your point of view, what is the advantage of working or studying at a Unite! university? 

Unite! universities have been collaborating for a long period of time, already before the European Universities initiative, and thus it is easier to start building something innovative and new. The Unite universities are good at supporting innovation and start-ups and I think this is also one of the things how we stand out. But it is a really important question that how is the Unite! network special and I hope that we will focus more in finding out how we stand out from all the other European University networks by getting to know each other better.

More information:
The Joint Mobility Centre has the mission of promoting the mobility of the students through the implementation of tools and procedures that will boost, simplify and support student mobility. This task force's main mission is to harmonize the work of our Mobility officers in order to make the placement process for short and extended mobility a smooth process both for the staff and the students.

The task force "Mobility4All Students" works on the backbone of the Unite! alliance, which is the creation of a transnational multi-campus in which mobility at all levels, both horizontally and vertically, for all is a reality. This task force's main mission is to build a tight, well structured and sustainable “mobility for all” environment.

Unite! University Alliance

Aalto University is a member of Unite! alliance together with six other European universities. Unite! will create a new model for European university education by strengthening the mobility of students and staff, and fostering the quality, inclusiveness and competitiveness of European higher education. Unite! is one of the European University Alliances funded by the European Commission.

Learn more on the Unite! University Alliance
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