Interviewing Mark Ryan, a student in the Degree Programme in Business Information Technology.
- It took me almost a year to learn to pronounce ‘tietojenkäsittely’ in Finnish, says Mark Ryan, a student in the Degree Programme in Business Information Technology taught in English, and laughs.
Mark Ryan from Dublin in Ireland started studying Business Information Technology at the Leppävaara campus in 2014. He had already moved to Finland a couple of years earlier after he met a Finnish girl in Australia.
- I had always been thinking about living in one of the Nordic Countries at some point in my life, he explains.
“Learning through projects suits me well”
Mark Ryan has been happy with his studies at Laurea. Projects play an important role in studies in Business Information Technology, which was new to Mark. However, after initial doubts, he has noticed that project work suits him.
- Here teachers are also more like instructors than traditional lecturers, which was new to me, Mark describes.
Mark is happy about how well it has been possible to integrate his own projects into the studies. According to him, by doing genuine project work it is possible to learn things that you wouldn’t be able to learn in normal lectures.
- Still, this style of studying sets certain limits to the student, Mark Ryan contemplates.
- It’s important that students have a clear goal regarding the kind of professional they want to be when they graduate.
Mark Ryan is especially grateful to the tutor teacher of his own group, who has guided him to choose courses and projects that help him to achieve his dream job as a programmer or systems designer.
Learning to know Finland through studying
Students in the Degree Programme in Business Information Technology taught in English are an international group of students. Just under one half of the students in Mark Ryan’s group are Finnish – the rest come from across the world, from Asia as well as from Europe.
After he started studying, Mark Ryan has learned to know Finland in quite a different way.
- I’ve learned to know a lot of Finnish people and consequently, I’m a lot more comfortable in Finland, he says.
- But I still hope that I will learn to speak better Finnish.
Having already lived in Finland for several years, Mark has a couple of tips for those who are about to move to Finland. Being Irish, he is used to chatting with people he doesn’t know, whether it is in the supermarket queue or at the bus stop.
- Finnish culture is tied to time and place. The Finns are just as sociable as we Irish are - as long as the time and place are right, he says and laughs.
And of course, Mark has already managed to get to know sauna:
- I have totally fallen in love with sauna. It must be the best thing in the world, he says.
Learn more about the Bachelor's programmes in English here.
Read more student stories from Laurea.