International student life in Finland can be both hectic and laid-back. A balanced student life means that you can concentrate on your studies as everyday life is well-organised and reliable.
One of the strengths of Finnish higher education institutions are the modern learning environments and facilities. Our high-quality classrooms and virtual learning environments, and free libraries enable students the best possible learning experience.
Recent surveys say that international students enjoy the campus environment and their institutions’ eco-friendly attitude. Also, the design and the quality of the campus buildings, and the surroundings outside the campus inspire international students in their everyday life.
Student unions and associations look after students’ interests and organise free-time activities, like sports and cultural events. Joining student activities is a good way of getting to know other students and be a part of the Finnish student life.
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT LIFE IN FINLAND
You can find a lot of useful general information and advice on living in Finland, Finnish culture, the Finnish society, travelling in Finland, and much more at:
Non-EU/EEA students need a student residence permit. After you receive your official letter of acceptance, you can begin the student residence permit application online at Enterfinland.fi. Remember that you must personally visit a Finnish embassy or consulate as part of this process. Start your residence permit process as soon as possible, carefully following the immigration authorities’ instructions and regulations, so that you can receive your permit in good time before your studies begin!
You can find detailed information and advice on the residence permit requirements and procedures on the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) website.
After your graduation, you may apply for an extension of your residence permit to look for work or start a business.
You have two main options when searching for accommodation: established student housing foundations and the private market.
Student housing providers are listed on the SOA (Finnish Student Housing Ltd.) website. The average monthly rent for a single room in a shared student flat ranges from around €160 – €380. Single apartments or family flats are also available, but the rent is likely to be higher in these non-shared apartments and they often have long waiting lists.
You can also arrange housing independently by searching for rented flats on the open market, or on social media. Open market flats tend to be more expensive than those available via student housing foundations.
It is also a good idea to ask the university you have been admitted to for advice on the other locally available student accommodation alternatives. Check the related information on the website of your hosting Finnish university or UAS.
WORKING IN FINLAND
In addition to some useful extra cash, having a part-time job can be a good way of gaining valuable work experience and networks alongside your studies. If you are non-EU student, you can work within certain limits on a student residence permit.
Finding a job in Finland can be quite challenging as not all fields of study offer opportunities for employment before graduation. Job applicants may also be required to have Finnish or Swedish language skills.
Non-EU students can also apply for an extended residence permit for up to a year after graduation. This is intended to help graduates in their search for work. More information is available at www.migri.fi.
WHERE TO LOOK FOR EMPLOYMENT?
When you start looking for a job, first check out the careers services your Finnish university has on offer.
General advice and tips on where and how to look for employment can also be found for example on the InfoFinland website.