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International Master’s degree students want to find employment in eastern Finland

Eastern Finland can congratulate itself on being attractive to international talent. International Master’s degree students at the University of Eastern Finland are willing to both find employment and live in the region after graduation, according to a recent survey among them.
Students are very motivated to find employment in Finland, and four in five respondents want to look for work primarily in eastern Finland, or in Finland in general, after graduation. The majority would also be willing to live in Finland and work remotely for an organisation located abroad.

Equality attracts, language skills are a challenge

Finding employment in eastern Finland, and in Finland in general, was considered attractive due to an equal work and study culture, openness, and good work-life balance. Clean nature, comfortable cities, a well-functioning society and housing prices were also described as pull factors. Finding employment in the region is seen as a way to give back to society for the high-quality education and good experiences received.

Language skills – both students’ Finnish language skills and their colleagues’ English language skills – were identified as a challenge for employment. Students hoped that the threshold for recruiting the first international employee would be lower, and that expectations regarding language skills would be lower as well.

University offers support even after graduation

Awareness of services supporting employment and integration was very poor among international students. However, these services were considered to be very important and, for example, assistance in becoming familiar with the Finnish job seeking and workplace culture, and in taking care of administrative matters, such as residence permits, would be needed. Career stories, tutoring and webinars dealing with employment were also described as useful ways of supporting the employment of international students.

“I’m pleased and also a bit surprised by how motivated international students are to build their future in eastern Finland. This shows that the region is attractive and that many fundamental things affecting the quality of life, such as education, housing and services, are in order,” International Relations Coordinator Marko Pietilä says. 

Different actors in the region will work together to promote the employment of international students. The University of Eastern Finland invests in the career guidance and employment of its international students through, for example, the TalentHub project, which helps international students in finding employment.

“Students emphasise the individual’s active role in finding employment. Despite this, the University of Eastern Finland wants to do more in order to keep international talent in Finland after graduation,” Coordinator Hanna Reinikainen says.

The Get Local! survey was carried out by Männikkömetsä Oy upon the university’s request.


For further information, please contact:
International Relations Coordinator Marko Pietilä, marko.pietila(at), tel. +358 40 355 3039
Coordinator Hanna Reinikainen, hanna.reinikainen(at), tel. +358 44 0162643