When it comes to job opportunities, it's all about your attitude

Having a good understanding of how things work under the hood is essential to problem-solving. Anastasiia Borodulina is able to use her wealth of technical knowledge from machine vision to 3D modelling in her job on a daily basis.

Anastasiia Borodulina is currently working as a Junior Front End Developer for the Oulu-based technology company Uros, which develops solutions for mobile services and IoT. Borodulina was recruited not long after she graduated from the Computer Science and Engineering master's programme at the University of Oulu. 

Borodulina was accepted into the programme in 2016 and that's when she made the move to Oulu. She had come across information about the programme and the university by chance, but as she was looking into continuing her studies in information technology, maybe outside her home country of Ukraine, she met a friend who was then studying in the programme in Oulu.

”She invited me to Oulu and I visited her for two days. She showed me around the university and I was very impressed with everything I saw."

 "I then met with the programme coordinator, who encouraged me to apply, and so I did,” Borodulina says.

Borodulina had a background in information security management and she wanted to get into image processing. Already at that point she was very excited about computer vision, artificial intelligence (AI), 3D modelling, graphics and the like, and the programme seemed like a great fit for her interests. She realised that she would have to work hard, which is why she dedicated her first year in the programme to her studies. She found the teachers to be very open to helping students, and also the students supported each other during their studies.

Borodulina ended up doing her thesis about using machine vision to animate 3D models. Outside the scope of her thesis, she also really liked a course on virtual reality (VR) technology, which combined a lot of her interests, such as such as programming, visual design, graphics, 3D modeling, and animation. 

New perspectives

As her studies progressed she found time for other activities than studying. She got involved in the UniOulu Ambassador programme and found herself volunteering for a lot of things. All these things gave her good opportunities to build networks and make friends. She says she enjoyed the international study environment in Oulu, as the international master's programmes have students from a wide range of countries and cultures.

”I was always very curious about other cultures. I remember as a child I would always be really interested if I heard someone speaking a foreign language. In the university it was really nice to be a part of diverse teams, where people will have different perspectives and can come up with solutions that would never cross your mind,” Borodulina says.

Borodulina graduated in the summer of 2019 and was offered a position as a research assistant at the university, which she took. After spending the remaining year working in research she started to look for opportunities in companies.

”There are a lot of companies and a lot of start-ups in this region in ICT and for most students in the field it's fairly straightforward to get job opportunities. If you are active enough, you can get work. You don't need to know everything perfectly, it's more about your attitude and willingness to learn,” Borodulina says.

In January 2020, there was a job fair at the university and Borodulina approached Uros' representatives at their stand at the end of the day.

”It was funny, it was kind of late and everyone was packing up already. I asked them what kind of people they were hiring and they said they were looking for front end developers, and I told them that this is exactly what I am looking to do. So I emailed the company that evening and was called in for an interview,” Borodulina recalls. After two rounds of interviews she was hired for a permanent position in March.

Anastasiia Borodulina says that there are many work opportunities in the Oulu region in ICT. Borodulina herself was hired by Uros, a company developing solutions for mobile services and IoT. 

Motivated to learn

Borodulina says that the knowledge and skills she acquired in her studies at the University of Oulu are constantly helping her at work. She has a great understanding of how things work under the hood, so to speak, and this helps her in solving a lot of the issues she faces.

Borodulina is responsible for providing front-end solutions for various services and maintaining their quality with evolving technology.

She expects to try many different tasks and wants to learn as much as she can.

”And that's great about this job. I finish one task and I get something I have never done before. My colleagues ask me if I'd like to try my hand at something, and I say 'I have never done it so of course I want to see what it's like!' I have been asking a lot of questions and sometimes I feel like maybe I'm asking too many of them, but my colleagues welcome it and encourage me to learn more,” Borodulina says. 

Borodulina is a visual artist and enjoys drawing, even if she hasn't done it on a regular basis for quite some time. She is getting back to it and hopes to maybe even integrate it into her work in some way.

In four years, Borodulina has made Oulu her home and does not expect to relocate in the near future. She enjoys the nature here and enjoys the winter a lot.

”People are very active here. I remember being surprised when it was sunny but very cold, like -20 C, and everybody would just go out to do all kinds of outdoor activities,” Borodulina says with a laugh.

Text and photographs: Janne-Pekka Manninen

Anastasiia Borodulina

M.Sc. (Tech.), Computer Science and Engineering
Junior Front End Developer at Uros
Anastasiia enjoys doing puzzles to relax. She prefers homogenous structures and images, for example, puzzles with the sky or the sea. And the bigger the puzzle, the more she enjoys it.