Environmental Engineering at UniOulu - an International Student Perspective
When I was choosing the universities for higher studies, all I knew was what subject I wanted to study, and where I wanted to study it. So, I started looking for universities that offer Environmental Engineering courses in Finland.
After going through some of the top universities in Finland, the University of Oulu was one of my topmost priorities.
My choice - University of Oulu
When I was choosing the universities for higher studies, all I knew was what subject I wanted to study, and where I wanted to study it. So, I started looking for universities that offer Environmental Engineering courses in Finland. After going through some of the top universities in Finland, the University of Oulu was one of my topmost priorities. Here is why:
- Three excellent variations in the specialisations
- Industrial and university collaboration
- Wide variety of research opportunities
- Multicultural environment with huge opportunities for extracurricular activities.
The master’s programme in Environmental Engineering offers three different types of specialisations. You can choose any of the specialisations. I will just briefly give you an idea about them.
- Industrial Environmental Engineering: Courses related to ecology, wastewater treatment, air pollution engineering, processing etc.
- Sustainable Energy systems: Courses related to smart energy network, nuclear energy, energy system, sustainability etc.
- Hydrology and water management: Courses related to Ground water engineering, water supply and network, field measurement and laboratory testing etc.
However, the most interesting thing is, even if you enroll in any of the specialisations, and you have an interest in other specialisations or even other courses from different faculty, you can do it with ease. You can take up to five free choice courses as per your interest.
For example, my specialisation was Industrial Environmental Engineering, but I was interested in enrolling in a course on project management this semester. I am happy that I was given that flexibility.
To obtain the degree, you will have to obtain 120 ECTS. It includes as following:
- Mandatory courses - 50 credits
- Language course - 5 credits
- Advanced practical training - 5 credits
- Optional studies - 10 credits
- Free choice courses - 20 credits
- Thesis - 30 credits.
We had a course that had 12 classes which were conducted by 10 different personnel from 10 different companies. They not only shared how they are using the technology and moving towards a sustainable future, but also, discussed a lot about the opportunities the companies provide for the students.
The university also has collaborations with different companies which visit the university and organise seminars for the students and the faculties.
The students can get in touch with the company representatives and discuss the potential and career opportunities. The students also have the option for summer jobs and training in different companies.
With the motto of “Science with Arctic attitude”, the Water, Energy, and Environmental Engineering research unit (WE3) has been doing high -impact research over the last decades. Topics vary from water treatment, microbial activity analysis in soil, carbon footprint, resource management.
While I was looking at the website of the research unit and talking with the existing students, I found several projects ongoing related to my choice. So, I applied accordingly, had an interview, and got the chance to work on 'Passive mine water treatment'. I must admit that the laboratory facilities are praiseworthy, and the cooperation of the co-workers was an amazing experience.
The University of Oulu has more than 13,000 students from different corners of the world. This is an excellent opportunity to get to know people from different cultures as well as different perspectives which will surely broaden your outlook.
You can make friends, hang out, share your knowledge together to create memories and experiences to last a lifetime. It is often said that Finnish people are very introverted and they do not come out of their social circles. But after moving here, I have met some amazing Finnish people at the university as my teacher, colleagues, and friends. Whenever I went to some places and lost myself, and somehow my phone was down, local people helped me with enthusiasm and smile on their faces.
I started my classes in autumn 2021 via online classes, but I came to Oulu in spring 2022. The first thing that caught my attention after stepping in the university was the campus: it was extremely vibrant. There were so many things going on- painting, singing, sports, presentation skill, language learning etc.
The university has its own Career Centre which helps the students to get a proper CV, prepare them for the interview and helps them with all the career advice.
So many things are going around the campus all the time. I am sure that you will find something that you love to do. Also, you will get to know people with similar interests and that is a great way to know more people. The faculty guilds have their own overalls, and they organize different site visits, hanging out and more.
About the author
Swagata Saha is from Bangladesh and currently studying for a master’s in Environmental Engineering. He loves to identify changes in nature (especially the weather changes) and capture them with his camera.