All the fun in my shared apartment

My single room in the HOAS shared apartment.

I remembered when I received a student housing offer from Hoas and there was not much information about how a shared apartment looked like. I was worried that it’s going to be my first home in a foreign country and what if the roommates are not nice.

Lucky me, those are unnecessary worries. I liked my room immediately when I first arrived. Windows were 4-meter wide, looking into a small green bush. Two Finnish roommates were friendly. The first roommate I met in the hall wall noticed that I just moved across countries and had nothing but two suitcases, kindly offered me to use all her kitchen stuff.

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Fun ways to enjoy the rest of summer in Espoo

There are only couple of weeks of summer vacation left and then we all get back to studies or work. However, the weather is still amazing and we should take maximum advantage of these sunny days, because well, “winter is coming”! So here are few ideas on how to spend the last days of summer near campus:

Enjoy some water sports in Keilaniemi. In sports center Laguuni, you can try wakeboarding, SUP boarding, kayaking or have fun in aquapark. I love SUP boarding, it challenges your balance and activates your core! I hope to try wakeboarding in the upcoming weekend as well!

More info here:

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Design Practice in Social Context

Human Impacts on Marine Species (Waste Dumped in Ocean)

How do we design for both human and non-human stakeholders?

This course was one of the most thought-provoking courses that I have taken in Aalto. The course offers an opportunity for students from multiple disciplines to work together, to study and develop new products, services, and businesses based on blue economy principles.

The course began from 10 days of field research in collaboration with the Kristineberg Marine Research in Lysekil, Sweden.

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Master‘s Program in Real Estate Economics

I have recently graduated from Real Estate Economics (REC) program so, today I would like to tell about this program and share some insights and pieces of advice.

Even though the name of the program sounds like it would belong to the Business School, it is actually organized by Engineering School of Aalto University. The program consists of major studies (60 ECTS), elective studies (30 ECTS) and Master´s thesis (30 ECTS) and by standard should take you 2 years to complete. Major studies will educate you on the management, valuation and investment analysis of commercial real estate, market analysis, real estate law and land management. You can check the full curriculum here.

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Blooming spring and summer in Finland

Big hares and rabbits are bouncing everywhere in Helsinki. Even in  the residence area. Foxes are spotted from time to time as well.

I remember the first week after I moved to Finland, I was walking home after a long day at Aalto, there’s a black figure sitting in the dark ahead on my path near a small forest. I couldn’t figure out what it was, until it bounced away. Wow…that’s a big hare! After few weeks, I got used to seeing hares, squirrels, rabbits everywhere in Helsinki and Espoo. Not long ago, I even spotted two white-tailed deers next to a residensial area with hares and squirrels running around them. Just like walking into a Disney animation scene.

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Graduating from Aalto University during the pandemic

In my previous post, I told you guys, that I was in the process of finishing my master’s thesis in the end of March. Shortly after that post was published the pandemic hit and all the world went on lockdown. The process of thesis writing in general is rather independent: after research was done I was just writing thesis at home and I always received comments from professor by email and sometimes I had skype calls with my supervisor from the firm I was writing thesis for. However, I was kind of worried when I finished my thesis and thesis presentation and maturity test were next in line.

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Three island retreats for a day trip during the summer break. 

View over Vallisaari, Soumenlinna and Kauppatori

During the summer Helsinki offers many refreshing spots to forget about your thesis for a day and to recharge after a long spring semester. One of the unique things of southern Finland are the countless islands of the Archipelago Sea. You could spend every day on a different island during the summer and you’d still only discover a small fraction. There are 257 islands that are over 1 km2  and over 17000 smaller islands. When you have so many islands to choose from, it’s not easy to decide where to go. Fortunately, some of the most fascinating ones are just a short ferry ride away from the Market-square. Here are three popular islands that are super easy to reach from Kauppatori. Continue reading

What is it like to study at Collaborative and Industrial Design?

International tutors in CoID

Hello, my name is Senciria Chou, and I am a second-year master student in Collaborative and Industrial Design. I would like to introduce my study experience as an international student at Aalto University. Especially the CoID program.

There is a lot of different profession program under ARTS school, like fashion, contemporary, film and photography, also architecture and interior design. You can find more information on the Aalto website to find out more detailed descriptions.

Unlike many master studies in other countries, the study structure in Aalto is very open. It allows students to choose courses they would like to take from other programs. The school also encourages us to have multipipeline collaboration, so there are also quite many courses cooperated with cross-department. Students have various chances to team up with others from different departments, like engineering and business school, …etc.

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Days of Zoom: Quarantine in Spanish

Anna smiles at all her students through her webcam as if it would be the single greatest event that no one showed up at her classroom in Otakaari 1 this week. Our Spanish teacher seems as surprised as we are that almost the entire class is absent but yet digitally united on one screen.

Empty University. ©Hsiao-Pei Liao

I didn’t expect anyone to show up to this premier of the zoom class Basic Spanish for Professional Needs 1. Curiosity was my main reason to sign in to this remote lecture, although I was doubting the efficiency of online learning. But then fifteen other students started to tune in and a wave of “HOLA QUÉ TAL” roared through my headphones. After a clumsy beginning of rearranging webcams and crackling microphones the course quickly turned into one of the funniest sessions we had in this period and it ended with a class of Finnish and international students dancing in front of their computers to a Gente De Zona  song. We had to raise our hands every time a Latin American country or region was mentioned. It was quite an exercise since the lyrics went something like this for about four minutes: “Uruguay con Paraguay, hermano con Costa Rica – Bolivia viene llegando, Brasil ya esta en camino”

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