Viljami Väisänen spent a semester in student exchange in Mexico. Besides his studies, he familiarised himself with the local culture and other life and recorded the video about his experiences.
According the Head of International Student Services Saila Kurtbay, business students understand the value of an exchange to their future career prospects. International, multi-cultural experience is an asset companies are looking for when recruiting. However, the biggest assets of an exchange term is the personal growth students undergo while overseas.
– It is an opportunity available to every single business student to develop international and cross-cultural skills by studying abroad in a different academic and cultural context, says Kurtbay.
– International experience is considered to be important part of a business degree and many students decide already at the early stage of their studies that they will apply for exchange at some point of their degree. Many students who study on exchange on bachelor level apply again in master level. Exchange studies are transferred to Aalto degree as International Study Module, which can be included to both bachelor and master degree.
In the academic year 2016-2017 the School of Business is sending close to 400 students on exchange to 38 different countries, which is a record number. The School of Business has an extensive partner university network of 150 top business schools around the world.
The School of Business is sending students to all continents: Europe receives the highest number of students (38,4 %) followed by Asia (28,5 %) and North America (17,6 %). The top 6 countries Aalto students go on exchange are Canada, Singapore, China, USA, Australia and Japan. The most popular universities according to students’ first choices were National University of Singapore, Auckland University of Technology, University of Southern California and Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien.
More and more students coming from the U.S.
In the academic year 2015-2016 the School of Business hosted over 300 students from 35 different countries all over the world. Majority of the incoming students came from Europe (44%) followed by Asia (28%), and North America (16%). The top 6 countries where these students came from were China, France, Canada, Singapore, Germany and USA.
– It has been delightful to see more and more students coming from the USA as it is one of the top destinations for our own students, Sanna Krigsholm, Specialist from the International Student Services says.
According to the annual exchange student survey, students are attracted to the School of Business by our good reputation, interest in visiting Finland and experiencing the Finnish culture. Especially the KY student association and KY Sub trips and activities have been the highlight of the exchange. 97% of respondents answer that they would recommend an exchange experience in Aalto to other students.
Some testimonials from Aalto students:
”The importance of exchange studies cannot be highlighted enough. The students who miss this opportunity are not as likely to succeed in the life generally and from career point of view as those who took the leap of faith, went and experienced. Continue the strong support on students exchange, this is the future and I'm proud to feel that we are ahead of other universities at this!”
“During the exchange I learnt more about myself and I also learnt that people around the world are actually not that different from one another. I also believe my English got better during the exchange since I used it on a daily basis both in the university and everywhere else, since I was the only Finnish exchange student at the time. I also realized that Finland is actually not a bad place to live, things that we take for granted don’t work the same everywhere else.”
Some testimonials from exchange students:
“I fell in love with Finland, and I truly believe both the country and its companies should be more promoted abroad. Also many thanks to the international services, you were always very helpful :)”
“Keep going with the wonderful job! It was a pleasure studying at Aalto.”
“I had a better time than I could have ever imagined during my exchange. Sanna was amazing in all her preparation for us, as were the tutors. They helped to provide such a great experience while living in your country.”
“Thanks to this great country with its fantastic people, the excellent Aalto University and all the amazing people I have met here - the exchange was one of the greatest experiences of my life!”
“I didn't choose Helsinki as my exchange program but I am so thankful and so happy that I went on exchange in Finland. It was the BEST semester of my life and I am going to go back and recommend this program to everyone!!!!!”
“I found the quality of education at Aalto University outstanding as a student from Sweden. The University has connections and networks to important visiting lecturers, companies and practitioners.”