On 19th May, we had an interview in Zoom with one of our Pathway March 2021 intake students, Chen Suqing, who is from China but currently living in Singapore. After the Pathway program, she will start studying in Finland, in Satakunta University of Applied Sciences (SAMK). Here is her experience with our Pathway to Finland -program.
Q: How has your experience with the Pathway program been so far?
So far, it has been very good and it has been excellent for me to join this program because I can improve my academic skills. I think that it’s quite different from the courses I take in Singapore or in China because the teaching approach is quite new for me and it’s excellent, I can learn a lot from this program.
Q: What made you choose to come to Finland?
Before I joined this program, before I decided to study in Finland, most of my friends chose to study in the United States, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom and even Japan but they never thought about wanting to study in Finland, and not because Finland’s education system was bad but because the United States is the top one country for Chinese students to study.
In my country or in my province, there are not many people who know about the Finnish education system, including me; I also didn’t know about it until I moved to Singapore and was looking for a country to continue my further education. At that moment, I did a lot of searching online; I searched in which country education is good and affordable concerning the tuition fee, and the coordinator of my university asked me why don’t I go to Finland because the education system is high-quality and there is affordable tuition fee. And after I talked with him, I did a lot of searching online and found out it’s the best choice for me.
It’s a bachelor’s degree for the university of applied sciences where I can combine both theoretical program and the practical program, so I think I will learn faster than in the normal theoretical program.
Q: DO YOU FIND THE SUBJECTS IN THE PATHWAY PROGRAM HELPFUL TO YOUR FUTURE DEGREE?
Definitely, I love them so much because they can help me prepare for my further education since there are many students from different countries, we can learn from each other. I think the homework is based on the university studies, so when I’m doing the homework, I believe I will do the same thing later in the university. So, it’s not much different and I think it’s quite great preparation for me to study in Finland and not only in my further degree, but also in my life.
After I study this program, I think I’ll try to see things from other people’s point of views, for example, in the past when we had an argument with my family member, I just saw it from my own point of view but never thought about how we have different life experience. I should listen to them and also think what would I do if I were her or him. So, I think I learned quite a lot and I’m happy with that.
“There are many students from different countries, we can learn from each other” -Chen
Q: WHAT WAS THE BEST THING ABOUT THE PROGRAM IN YOUR EXPERIENCE?
I found every course the best for me, I can learn from the culture and improve my language skills. Katie is an excellent teacher, I love her teaching approach because I can see improvement in my studies.
In the past, I took the IELTS exam and had no confidence in writing in English. I hated it, I didn’t like it, and just did it for the homework, or what I needed for. But after taking this course, writing is not scaring me anymore; I can just study writing when I want and try to write something in English. I think it’s quite a big change for me. And also, I still remember in the beginning when I took the mathematics course, it was quite hard for me because every question was in English and my English was not good enough to understand the questions.
At the moment, if I don’t understand the questions, I just send an email to our teacher. He replies me very fast and explains every question for me, I think it has never happened in China, neither in Singapore. Also, the cultural communication teacher was also an international student in Finland, she shared her experience to us, and I was like wow, when I listened to her experience – I thought, if she can do it, I think all of us can do it too.
Q: HAVE YOU HAD ANY OTHER DIFFICULTIES DURING THE PATHWAY PROGRAM?
Since all the teachers communicate in English, at the beginning it was a little bit hard for me to understand the questions and also follow the teachers but after two or three weeks, I found that I can follow the teachers and manage my time.
Also, in the beginning, I couldn’t find the link to attend the class. But now, at the second period of the Pathway course, they post the link to the Claned platform so it’s easier for me to find and also attend the course on time.
Q: WHAT RATING WOULD YOU GIVE TO THE PATHWAY PROGRAM? (1 BEING THE LOWEST AND 5 BEING THE HIGHEST)
Honestly, I want to give 5 but I believe nothing is perfect, so I will give 4.999…
Q: IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE? ANY ADVICE FOR OTHER STUDENTS?
I have a full-time job in Singapore and I’m also joining the program but I think the best suggestion is that they join the course as full-time students but if not, please make sure you can finish your job and also manage your time to attend the course as well as you can.
“Please make sure you can finish your job and also manage your time to attend the course as well as you can” -Chen
If you want to read more about the Pathway to Finland -program, visit here.