We sat down to chat with, Shyne Cindy, a master’s degree in business Informatics student from the Philippines in Metropolia university. After completing her bachelor in the Philippines and having worked in finances and IT, Cindy decided to continue her studies in Europe after visiting the Netherlands in 2019. “When I got there I instantly was like, ok, I need to live here, I need to come to Europe”, she tells when asked about how she ended up studying in Finland.
Cindy found the study program she was interested in in Finland, and decided to apply. “For me it was the most practical option at that time. Finland has one the best educational systems in the world, so I was encouraged to go there”.
The process to get into university in Finland went really fast; Cindy contacted an agency in late 2019 who connected her Edunation, and got accepted to Metropolia. She received her residence permit fast and found herself in Finland just a couple of months later. When she started her studies in Metropolia, everything was online due to the pandemic, but overall she considers her school experience a good one. “The university was doing their best in the situation”, she recalls.
Are you happy about your decision to come to Finland to study?
“Of course, yeah! Overall I think if you try to decide which country to live in in the long-term, Finland has a lot of benefits, That’s why I decided to come here”. Cindy has done her research comparing countries in Europe, and considered the housing market, healthcare system, public transportation system and the way basic necessities are covered in Finland when making her decision to stay in Finland.
Do you feel like Edunation helped you in the Application process?
“Yes, they did all the processing which lifted the burden for me. If I did everything on my own I would probably not have made it before the school started.” Cindy also thinks that Edunation was a big help in providing her information about what she needs to do when she gets to Finland, for example when it came to housing. She had already been approved for student housing before arriving in Finland, and highly recommends taking advantage of the rates for the students housing.
How has your experience been as a student in a Finnish University?
“I admire how Metropolia and I think the schools here in general don’t require us to do theoretical exams. Most of the assignments and projects require you to apply them to real life situations, which is really helpful because eventually that will be the work you will be doing after you graduate. Back home in my country I just memorize things.” Cindy also appreciates the opportunities the school offers for getting different certifications she would need in working life, and feels like the tools she will need are being provided by the university. “It’s just you who needs to put an effort into it and make the most out of your student experience”.
The experience of living and studying in Finland
We asked if Cindy has been able to enjoy her time in Finland, despite the world situation; “Yeah, the summer’s here are incredible! One of the most beautiful summers I have ever experienced”, she talks about the long summer sunsets, referring to the Finnish midnight sun during the summer months, when the sun barely goes down at all. Cindy has also been able to experience the “mökki”, a traditional summer cottage on the lakeside, a popular way for Finns to spend their holidays. “There are a lot of things to do here and it’s up to you if you want to enjoy it”.
Cindy had no expectations about Finnish people when coming to Finland, and she wanted to just meet the people as they come. “When I got here, my initial view of Finnish people was that they are very kind, but also kind of timid. As long as you are able to reach out and break through that barrier you are able to make friends here”. She was surprised about how much Finnish people enjoy their coffee: ”I love coffee, but you guys have like 16 cups per day!”, she laughs.
Applying for work as a student in Finland
“I am actively applying for jobs. I wanted my job here to be in line with my studies, in the field of IT”. English is a common field in her field, but Cindy thinks that learning Finnish will improve her chances of finding a job. “For students applying for jobs here, it’s very important to learn the language. Metropolia offers free courses, which is good as long your time allows it, you can learn the Finnish language. I want to be fluent in the language, because I’m planning on staying here”, she explains.
After graduating, Cindy is hoping to have a job in her field and is planning on settling into life in Finland. She wants to do even more with her time, and is looking to join a charity organization to be part of building a community. “Aside from work, you also need to do other things. Finland is a great place to do that, they really encourage you to do what you’re interested in, aside from work.”
Since we interviewed Cindy, she told us that she has received a job offer for a job in her field!
Do you have any advice for other students who want to come to study in Finland?
“Don’t fixate on the idea that Finland is the happiest country in the world. Happiness is your own responsibility, but Finland provides you the tools to be happy. As long as you’re working hard, the country will take care of you and people can better focus on themselves”, Cindy says, “Overall just enjoy the whole experience, because this chance will not happen all the time”.
“I had a bunch of questions before coming here and Edunation always answered my inquiries. When I needed information, Edunation was there to provide that”, Cindy tells.
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