Sara studied her master´s degree in Environmental Engineering at the University of Oulu. She is currently working in KONE as a material specialist in Espoo.
I’m originally from Tehran, Iran, and my journey to Oulu began back in November 2020 when I decided to pursue my master’s in environmental engineering here.
Finland had always been on my radar, and after exploring various master’s programs, the University of Oulu felt like the perfect fit for me. It’s been an incredible opportunity to explore my favorite field while embracing all the amazing things this city has to offer.
Firstly, let me share a bit about myself. I completed my Bachelor’s in Material Science and Engineering in Iran, where my passion for environmental issues sparked my interest in contributing finding solutions in this field. This was basically the main reason why I chose environmental engineering program.
Outside of academics, I enjoy playing music, the Iranian instrument called santoor, and playing futsal as sport. Also, I can describe myself as someone who is adaptable, active, and always open to learning new things.
Adjusting to a new environment wasn’t easy initially, but I believe that these traits significantly aided me in navigating the challenges of settling into Finland. Wondering about how these characteristics helped me? I’d love to share my personal experiences with you!
Upon receiving my admission in Oulu, I was eager to know more about the city, university, and gain a better understanding of student experiences. I recognized the invaluable insights that connecting with fellow students could provide, given their firsthand experience of what I was about to start soon. Learning about the university ambassadors, who shared their experiences, became an initial point of interest for me, primarily through Oulu University’s Instagram account. I found it fascinating that student ran the university’s social media, it inspired me to reach out to a few ambassadors who kindly shared helpful tips.
When I arrived in Oulu during the challenges of COVID, I realized the necessity of actively shaping a positive environment around me, therefore, I tried to get involved in various activities and even applied to become a university ambassador myself! It was a fantastic transition from seeking help to being a source of support for others. This experience not only helped me make friends but also taught me the importance of being proactive in networking and self-improvement.
”It’s crucial not to lose hope and be consistent in job searching.”
During the first year of my master’s program, my primary focus was on the ambassador program and my internship at the university. Until I received an email from the university regarding the Erasmus exchange opportunity, I hadn’t taken it seriously. However, on the last day of the application deadline, I decided to apply, and surprisingly, I was accepted to study for a semester in Barcelona. It turned out to be one of the most incredible experiences of my life, and I am immensely grateful to the university for providing me with this opportunity.
The majority of my second year revolved around completing my master’s thesis and actively applying for jobs. After several months of searching, I was fortunate enough to get a job. I’d like to highlight the challenge that international students, especially due to language barriers, face in finding a job after graduation. However, it’s crucial not to lose hope and be consistent in job searching.
I thoroughly enjoyed my time as a master’s student in Oulu, primarily due to the beauty of nature that surrounds the city. The peaceful surrounding provides a sense of tranquility, peace, and safety. The university hosts a multitude of diverse organizations and activities, providing a lot of opportunities to meet new people and explore fresh experiences.
Moreover, based on my experience, Oulu is dedicated in enhancing the strengths of its international people and students´ personal and professional development. For example International House Oulu, Multicultural Centre Villa Victor, Bloom… The city offers numerous opportunities that can facilitate your growth in your chosen path. It’s essential to remain proactive in seeking out these opportunities and connecting with the right individuals who can guide you along this journey.
The vibrant landscape of Oulu is teeming with possibilities, awaiting those who are willing to actively pursue them.