University of Oulu, 2017

EdGlo - Student and Alumni Stories

EdGlo programme gains much of its value through the dialogue between teachers and students. The members of our teaching team come from variuos background and all of them have a lot of international experience. Experts from different areas of society as well as visiting lecturers from other universities contribute to this exchange of ideas.

Below our students and alumni tell how it feels like to study in a multicultural student group and live in Oulu. Are you interested in becoming one of us? Please see the Admissions website.

Dan from Australia

Dan has published an article on PISA (Policy Futures in Education 12:7).

"I remember walking out of the final exam at the end of my first semester and thinking, I am really developing as a scholar here.

In its first year Edglo gives students a thorough grounding in education and globalisation issues. Faculty staff are good at their jobs and keen for students to succeed. Guest lecturers are experts in their fields and visits to local schools shed light on why Finland is a world leader in education.

The second year of study presents an opportunity to follow your own interests with your thesis. The University maintains high academic standards and students have access to top quality facilities and resources and the advice of staff who are accomplished researchers.
When I moved to Oulu in my mid-30s with my wife and daughter I was looking to change career path. Completion of my thesis led to having an article published in an academic journal and opportunities researching and writing about education policy.

Life in Oulu has a nice pace to it and lacks the hassles and distractions of a big city. With a first-class bike network making it easy and cheap to get around, it is an ideal place to spend a while studying.

My family and I cherish memories of our time living on top of the world. There is definitely something magical about the place."

Galina from Russia

‘First, the EdGlo programme has so far provided me with several totally new viewpoints on what is happening and how it is happening now in education. Those new perspectives come from the courses and readings, and also from our incredibly multinational and diverse group.

Second, the programme has opened up for me the world of up-to-date academic research in social sciences. During our time here I feel like I have read, discussed and written more academic work than during my whole first degree. I learn a lot here.

Third, thanks to numerous field visits and guest lectures we had the chance to closely observe the Finnish school education system, of which I knew little before coming here, but which is recognized as the best in Europe and one of the leading in the world. Reflecting on Finnish good practices gives a lot of ideas about what education can and should be, and what I can personally do in my future work.

Finally, I am very happy about my quality of life in Oulu. Accommodation, flexibility in studies, safety and health issues, conditions for families, - everything feels welcoming, easy and comfortable. And you do have a closer contact with nature here!’

Sebastiao from Brazil

‘After having lived and worked as a teacher in Japan and Korea for the past 10 years, I was looking for a change of pace. In addition, I was seeking to improve my leadership skills, and subsequently, move forward in my career. So after doing some research and talking to my family and colleagues I decided that Oulu was the place I needed to be.

Why Oulu? Simple. It came down to quality of life. I was not deterred by the weather. And pleasantly surprised I was to find out that conditions are not as harsh as I previously imagined. Yes, it’s cold, snowy and dark in the winter. But it’s actually quite serene and beautiful. Now, in the spring and summer is when the city really comes alive. Lots of colors, flowers, fresh air, abundant nature, outdoor festivals and places for sightseeing. A clean, safe and enjoyable city is what my family and I needed, and Oulu has delivered just that.

So, why EdGlo? Well, the program is comprised of an eclectic and multicultural group of students. Most already have years of professional experience from all corners of the planet which they brought to the table and that helped me broaden my scope. In addition, lecturers and staff also have vast experience in the field of education with long involvement in international projects. The reason I placed the EdGlo program above all others I had looked at was the fact that the program has a strong emphasis on research.  

Joining the EdGlo program has been one of the smartest decisions I have made recently.’

Hieu from Vietnam

‘I wanted in particular to study education abroad: my childhood dream was to be an educator; also, education was the only subject that I was qualified to study at a university. The more I searched, the more I became stunned to learn that Finland was famous for welfare, education, and saunas—you name it. This sounded promising. Oulu University was the only Finnish institution to which I applied (I still struggle to find a reason for this: if someone asks me ‘why Oulu?’ I answer ‘I don’t know’; and when thinking about it, I compare my decision to Alice’s unplanned adventures in Wonderland, or use the word ‘destiny’ a lot, to make my decision seem more dramatic). Anyway, in 2011, I eventually found myself studying on an Oulu Master of Education programme and living in Linnamaa, behind a tennis court and in front of daycare centre.’ 

Kati from Finland

Immediately after graduation Kati found employment in the Finnish Ministry of Education working in liaison with the UN and Unesco. ‘I had always been interested in development and sustainability questions; the EdGlo programme attracted me because it integrates these issues into the modules in a unique manner. EdGlo modules, the expertise, the students from every continent all made for an excellent student experience. In addition to the stimulating intercultural discussions, I felt that the compulsory internship was extremely valuable. It offered an important opportunity to gain practical insights into the functioning of important educational institutions.’

Valentine from France

‘I think what you gain from this programme depends a lot on what you came looking for. You are an actor of your own learning, supported by the structure of the programme, the teachers and your classmates. This will not prepare you to be a teacher but if you look for improving your way of thinking pedagogy, your position as a teacher, then it will help you to be a (better) teacher. What I mean is that this programme, and the Finnish University of Oulu in general, helps you build your own path, cooking your own learning soup, made of knowledge, skills, critical reflexivity and human capabilities. What if you don’t really know what you are looking for? Then, you will be led through different perspectives, aspects of education and the society and might find it here!

As usual it takes time to digest knowledge and experiences; it takes time to notice how what you have done or heard influences you and changes you. One year in the Edglo programme, one year in Finland and I notice how much distance has been covered… Not one single regret to have chosen to come here!’

More EdGlo Student and Alumni Ambassadors

Learn more about our student and alumni ambassadors. 

Viimeksi päivitetty: 11.9.2019