I accidentally met my boss when I was studying Finnish in a local church – My first work experience in Finland


Be active in your leisure time. You never know who you will meet and what opportunities your network can bring you.

I go to study Finnish in a local church usually every Thursday. One day, I accidentally met the boss who was looking for a Thai language teacher for the City of Hämeenlinna.

You have the talents that the Finnish labour market needs.

I sent my CV and had an interview after that. Now I am teaching Thai to heritage language learners at Jukola School in Hämeenlinna. The lessons are offered by the municipality and it is free of charge for young students (aged from 6 to 18) with immigrant language background (Find more information here).

I teach 2 hours per week. There are 4 competences that I need to help Thai heritage language learners to develop. Depending on the students interests and the learning goals that I set together with the development team, I prepare for the lessons every week. All heritage language teachers gather to have a meeting at the end of every month, during which we share our work and ideas for developing the teaching and learning process.

Focus on developing your skills and competence in your part time job.

Even though I am studying to become a teacher, but there are skills and competence that I develop from a teaching job. The two most transferable skills for me are organisation and presentation skills. Because I work with children, I need not only a lot of patience, but also creativity mindset. All my students study in elementary school, so I have to prepare the lessons in an interesting way to meet my “young customers´” needs. I usually use game-based methods to get my students´ interests and attention. I believe that the skills I learn from this part time job are very valuable for any future job I will take as my study proceeds.

Talents inspire talents.

I wish all international students (including myself) good luck in finding their paths into the Finnish labour market. Keep fighting.


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Fill in My first work experience in Finland survey, or contact qingyang.li@hamk.fi for more information.

A first-year student from Construction Engineering English taught degree programme.
The story is edited by Qingyang Li, Talent Boost Mentor from HAMK International, based on student´s answer to the My First Work Experience in Finland survey.

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