Jawad Malik: “All you have to do is to break the shell”

Man watching winter scenery in Oulu

Jawad Malik came here from Pakis­tan to stu­dy master’s in educa­tion and tech­no­lo­gy and pur­sue his pas­sion in telecom­mu­nica­tion. Cur­rent­ly, he is wor­king at Nokia as a Sys­tem per­for­mance Engi­neer.


Hel­lo, I am Jawad Malik. I am cur­rent­ly wor­king at Nokia as a Sys­tem per­for­mance Engi­neer.

I came here to stu­dy master’s in educa­tion and tech­no­lo­gy and pur­sue my pas­sion in telecom­mu­nica­tion. My jour­ney is a unique one, I must say. Not eve­ry­one tra­vels the long path I have taken.

I had finis­hed my stu­dies rela­ted to Elect­rical and elect­ro­nics engi­nee­ring specia­liza­tion in wire­less com­mu­nica­tion in 2009 in Pakis­tan, then I went to Swe­den to finish my mas­ters in master’s in elect­rical engi­nee­ring with emp­ha­sis on radiocom­mu­nica­tion engi­nee­ring.

After which I got back home, wor­ked a few years in the telecom industry and took the educa­tion rou­te and stu­died educa­tion plan­ning and mana­ge­ment. With my expe­rience in telecom­mu­nica­tion and educa­tion, I deci­ded to embark on yet anot­her master’s degree jour­ney, this time here in Fin­land. My three years of hard work have final­ly paid off. I am now wor­king for Nokia. It has been a long, unique jour­ney, but I love eve­ry part of it.


Whi­le in Swe­den, I rea­lized how much poten­tial the­re is in the Nor­dic count­ries which are usual­ly over­loo­ked by inter­na­tio­nal stu­dents. So, when I finis­hed stu­dying educa­tion plan­ning and mana­ge­ment in Pakis­tan and gai­ning my much-nee­ded expe­rience, I also loo­ked for options to stu­dy but this time in the field of educa­tion and tech­no­lo­gy.

I belie­ve that the social skills, work ethics, col­la­bo­ra­ti­ve lear­ning etc. are qui­te impor­tant. I lear­ned all the­se during my educa­tion cour­se. Now I had the tech­no­lo­gy background and the social work ethics and col­la­bo­ra­ti­ve skills. Of cour­se, it is a dif­fe­rent idea. The­re aren’t many people who go down this path.

I wan­ted to join the work­force after acqui­ring a tech­nical background, work ethics, and social sup­port skills. Fin­land is famous for educa­tion. I liked the cour­se that the uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu offe­red. It matc­hed with what I wan­ted to do. I took the leap of faith and here I am! Oulu was the first city I came to and liked the sce­nic town a lot.

Man watching blue sky


I wor­ked in the ser­vice industry whi­le stu­dying here. That is then when I saw the real people of Fin­land. They are genui­ne­ly nice and gent­le.

What I love about the socie­ty here is that eve­ryt­hing is as it is; straight­forward. I also like the gen­der equa­li­ty seen here. See­ing women as pas­tors and dri­ving hea­vy vehicles and being an acti­ve mem­ber of socie­ty are prai­sewort­hy. It is great to see eve­ry­one work hard.

My fami­ly is here with me now. It was hard at first being away from my fami­ly for three years, alt­hough I used to go visit them. I have a dia­ry whe­re I wro­te down all the expe­riences. When a per­son arri­ves at a new place, they have dif­fe­rent thoughts and dreams. Wri­ting them down hel­ped during the rai­ny and snowy days.

What I apprecia­te about this count­ry is that it is safe. It has world-renow­ned educa­tion, clea­nest water, best air, wel­fa­re ser­vices and most impor­tant­ly work life balance. What more can any­one ask for?

If I could redo eve­ryt­hing over again, I would learn Fin­nish ear­lier. The­re are many ways to learn here with many ins­ti­tu­tions and the­se days, you can start with the basics through so many apps like dual lin­go. I would sug­gest it to any­one trying to come here to start befo­re they arri­ve. People here apprecia­te your efforts.

My advice to eve­ry expat would be, plea­se talk. I have seen many people moving back fee­ling iso­la­ted and depres­sed because of win­ter and the dark­ness. Know that people are good. You must take the ini­tia­ti­ve and talk to them.

Eve­ry­one will seem reser­ved, as if they are in a shell. All you have to do is to break that ‘shell’. Then you will see they will beco­me your good friends. Don’t get anno­yed by long dark days in win­ter, you have auro­ras and snow! Get socia­lizing you will love it.


The­re are a lot of lei­su­re acti­vi­ties hap­pe­ning around the year for children and stu­dents. The indoor game halls are a great to mingle and network. We even have a cric­ket match occa­sio­nal­ly the­re!

Snow was somet­hing we only saw during vaca­tions. It is lifes­ty­le here, so all the win­ter sports are great to learn, and they offer most of them for free.

The bene­fits for stu­dents are plen­ty. The uni­ver­si­ty is very help­ful, the accom­mo­da­tions and food at the uni­ver­si­ty, the ser­vices pro­vi­ded around the city, eve­ryt­hing is affor­dable. The­re are jobs being offe­red to not only IT stu­dents but stu­dents in social sciences and other fields as well.

The­re are com­pa­nies and orga­niza­tions like Oulu Talent Hub who are the­re to sup­port. If you have a fami­ly with you here, they will help with the inte­gra­tion cour­ses for spouses. It is like the city has a fra­mework that sup­ports not only the per­son but the fami­ly coming along, which is unique and amazing.

Eve­ryt­hing is avai­lable here if you look. Lan­gua­ge cour­ses, lei­su­re acti­vi­ties, you name it. So, make use of your time to get to know the people and the cul­tu­re you will never be unhap­py.

I con­si­der Oulu, Fin­land my second home. I want to invi­te the glo­bal talent to explo­re this part of world which has plen­ty of oppor­tu­ni­ties to offer. I hope your next des­ti­na­tion will be Oulu – capi­tal of cul­tu­re 2026, the capi­tal of nort­hern Scan­di­na­via.

Jawad Malik, man watching to the camera

This article was ori­gi­nal­ly publis­hed at oulutalenthub.fi
Text: She­fat Islam

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