En route to Kenya
Earlier this month, Edunation’s President Tuomas Kauppinen, alongside the Vice-President Harri Suominen and Partnership Specialist Anna Vekka, flew to Kenya for ten days. This business trip was to build ground for student and workforce mobility, and to get to know the Kenyan culture and its people. The delegation visited in various counties and met with students, parents and other key stakeholders such as governors and their cabinet members.
Bringing students to Finland
“We (Finland) lack young people and young talent who can take the place of retiring citizens,” explains Anna. “In Kenya, it’s exactly the opposite – there, the younger generation is as big as 70% of all the people. And unfortunately, in Kenya, they cannot afford all these young talents what they are looking for. Kenyan youth have so much potential; they’re hardworking and motivated – but there are not enough jobs available.”
This situation helped Edunation leaders see why Finland could be a good match for Kenya. The countries have almost opposite conditions regarding their respective workforces, which is why the company is eager to invite and warmly welcome all the young Kenyan talents to Finland— to study and work in the happiest country in the world.
“We had a very successful trip to Kenya. We are expecting hundreds of students in our programs in 2023. The first groups are already coming now. However, we can do a lot more to help Kenya and Finland in their challenges, especially providing many study and work opportunities for Kenyan youth and workforce for Finland,” shares Tuomas Kauppinen, President and Co-Founder of Edunation.
Building educational bridges
The Edunation team also visited some local universities and high schools to meet students and academia. Doing this allows us to map the needs of the Kenyan youth better and match them to the right opportunities in Finland.
One of the plans addressed was that after students complete their studies in Kenya, they could come to Finland for a top-up program and gain the fast-track eligibility to work in their new home country. To bridge this, Edunation is localizing its Pathway program to the Kenyan context. This enables students to adapt their studies to the Nordic way before flying off to Finland.
After meeting with the universities, the Edunation leaders went to get to know our Kenyan partners. “We were very welcomed,” shares Anna. “We got to see how they work and learn their dynamics. We learned a lot; the most important part [was finding out] who we can work with and what we can contribute.”
A happy meet-up with students
The Edunation delegation also met with the first-ever Kenyan group of Edunation students coming to Finland during their trip. The group of 16 excited students was finalizing their residence permit applications before starting their nursing program at the Metropolia University of Applied Sciences.“It was lovely to meet the students face-to-face in their home country and see their eagerness and commitment. Maybe the most heartwarming gesture where the beautiful Finland-Kenya bracelet that students had made specifically for us. We are more than happy to welcome them to Finland soon!”
We need your help, and we want to help you
In summary, Finland has a huge need for young talent to study and work here. “We need them to fill the gap for the lack of workforce we will face in the future,” Anna repeats. “It’s a privilege to say we have the best education system and that we are the happiest country in the world. [So with that], we are [also] privileged to invite young talent to come and learn; not even just young people, but those with degrees as well or already familiar with working life— all kinds of students.”
The Edunation team believes that with this privilege, we also have our duty [to help] solve this national problem. We want to secure the country’s future and well-being we currently have. We realize it could not only be solved by just the Finnish people, so we welcome talent from abroad to help our country continue to thrive and keep its well-being while enabling the best living standards for the new people coming to Finland.
As Harri stated in his speech at the campaign event of Mr. Jonathan “Koti Moja” Bii, who is a strong candidate to become the new governor of the Uasin Gishu county:
“We need your help, and we want to help you. We might be the happiest country in the world, but we are not making enough babies. We are inviting motivated and curious Kenyans to come to Finland. We are happy to arrange education and jobs for you!”
Canada vs. Finland
Finally, you might still be thinking that what does hippos, Masai people and one COLD and one really COOL country have to do with our post?
Well, as said, we met some lovely locals during our trip. Check out their reactions to our rendezvous in this short video!