Each year, around 350 students from all over the world decide to spend a semester studying at the winner of the “International Student Satisfaction Award Finland”. Apply to Haaga-Helia and be one of them!
Finland is considered a well-kept secret amongst non-Finnish students. As one of the most sparsely populated countries in Europe, it is especially well known for the northern lights, the midnight sun, its untouched nature and of course the Finnish sauna, an important part of the country’s culture (there is on average one sauna in every household!). 10% of the country’s area is made up of lakes, and surprisingly the west coast of Finland is one of the sunniest parts of northern Europe. Finland’s university system is seen as exemplary (for example there are no course fees for European students) and is also recognised as such by the PISA study. Also, most Finnish people have an excellent command of English.
Not only is Helsinki the capital of Finland, it is also the country’s largest city, with just 621,000 inhabitants. It is located on the south coast of the Gulf of Finland, and half of the city comprises green spaces. Although temperatures can drop to below minus 30 in wintertime, summer temperatures can rise to up to 30 degrees. The vibrant city offers over 3,000 events each year and is very diverse. Modern design meets art nouveau architecture, the sea, parks and woods, saunas, shops and ice-skating. The cultural offering is also good, with lots of museums and theatres, pop-up garden cafés, a big wheel and a sea fortress for example.
Haaga-Helia offers excellent opportunities for studying in an international environment at modern locations with an active student life. With more than 10,000 students, Haaga-Helia is one of Finland’s largest universities and offers nine of its bachelor’s programmes in English. Over 100 nationalities study here, and it has more than 200 partner universities. There are significantly fewer hours of face-to-face tuition than at HSBA, with more emphasis placed on group work and presentations. ESN-HELGA organises events and trips as well as tutors for the exchange students, along with ski trips to Lapland, international cooking evenings or bowling. Vincent G., who completed an exchange semester at Haaga-Helia in 2014, praises the respectful relationship between students and lecturers, the good level of organisation at the university and the reasonably priced lunch in the canteen as well as the range of sports on offer. Another student, Frederik G., gives the university “10 out of 10” and is enthusiastic about the friendly and helpful people and the feeling of being made welcome.
The market for accommodation in Helsinki is comparable to Hamburg in terms of costs and availability. As a result, we recommend contacting the external organisation HOAS which works together with Haaga-Helia to find student apartments for Erasmus students. There are furnished individual apartments, but also apartments with double rooms or several single rooms. Depending on the type of apartment, the costs range from EUR 240 to EUR 530 per month, and most apartments are in student halls close to the city centre and the university.