Exporting Finnish VET

Welcome to read and share the latest news on exporting Finnish vocational and professional education.

Finnish qualifications – the best in the world

Accredited Finnish vocational and professional upper secondary qualifications are now available worldwide.

Why Finnish qualifications?
Finnish vocational education has strong liaisons with the working life. This shows in our qualifications: they are designed to meet the needs of both the student and working life. Competence is acquired and also assessed in practical working tasks. Curricula are modular, which adds flexibility.

Watch the video to learn more about Finnish vocational and professional qualifications.
Finnish vocational and professional qualifications

Major milestone for educational collaboration between Finland and China

Educational collaboration between Finland and China has reached a major milestone: 22 upper secondary vocational students from Shanghai Commercial Accounting School received a Finnish vocational education certificate after completing a study module in Marketing Communications.

Director General for Finnish National Agency for Education, Mr Olli-Pekka Heinonen, awarded certificates to the students during his official visit to China.

The study module in Marketing Communications forms a part of the Finnish Vocational Qualification in Business and Administration. The training was carried out by Jyväskylä Educational Consortium Gradia in cooperation with EduCluster Finland, an education expertise organization.

"Finnish education has a great reputation in China. Our countries share a long track record of fruitful collaboration in educational issues. I am pleased to be here to witness how also Chinese investments in Finnish vocational qualifications are bearing concrete results. This is a major milestone for Finland and Finnish educational business," says Director General Heinonen. 

Learning by doing and cooperation with real-life work places   

The Finnish vocational qualification program received excellent feedback from Chinese students. In particular, they enjoyed the experience of learning together in teams, having close dialogue with teachers and learning by doing. "What was new to the Chinese students was learning outside of school, and the fact that assessment was based on practical competence demonstrations and an evaluation discussion," says teacher Johanna Ärling from Gradia.

The investment in education in Shanghai was Gradia's and EduCluster Finland’s second education export collaboration in vocational qualifications. The first qualification program was launched in late 2016, and is currently being implemented in Qatar. In Qatar, local school staff are being trained as learning assistants, in accordance with Finnish vocational qualification requirements. The graduation ceremony will take place in May 2018.

More information
Lauri Tuomi, Programme Director for Education Finland, Finnish National Agency for Education
tel. +358 29 533 1667,

Kirsi Koivunen, Manager of Global Partnerships, Jyväskylä Educational Consortium, Gradia

OEP trains future leaders in Saudi Arabia

Omnia Education Partnerships (OEP) and Ajyad Knowledge partner for an onboarding program “Future Leaders, ACWA Saudi Talent Program”. This is one of the first Finnish professional qualification programs that can be fully completed abroad. The goal of the program is to create a Saudi talent pool of qualified employees for the needs of a large Saudi Arabian holding company.

The participants of the Future Leaders, ACWA Saudi Talent Program with their trainer, Ms. Hanna Erkko, from Omnia.

The program is based on the Finnish Qualification for First-Level Management and tailored to the needs of ACWA Holding. The first part of the program was completed in January 2018, and it  focused on the skills required in first-level manager’s work, such as leadership, communication and guiding a team.

Program bridges gap between academia and practice

Being competence-based, the qualification program aims at providing the participants with the competence they need in their actual work. “The program is good in the way it transfers academic skills into the working environment and emotional intelligence; communication, how to work in an environment and interact with other people,” says Scott McGuigan, Head of Investment of ACWA Holding. “There is a balance with what is taught and how it applied in daily work,” McGuigan adds.

The program continues with two other modules in 2018.

Further information
Ms Mervi Jansson, CEO of Omnia Education Partnerships,

Coach trainings and other sports education to China 

Kisakallio Sports Institute offers sports education and trainings. Kisakallio focuses currently on the development of winter sports but plans to expand its offering also to other sport activities and well-being.

Curling coach training participants at Kisakallio Sports Institute in summer 2017

Kisakallio has worked for a long time in China in forming networks, understanding markets and designing content. The education export networks in Finland as well in the target countries are important. Sales and marketing have been a common effort for everyone at Kisakallio.

In summer 2017, Kisakallio organised a curling coach training for Chinese participants, which was a good opening in winter sports coach trainings. Other coaching trainings are being designed and negotiated.
In autumn 2018, Kisakallio will launch a Sports for All instructor training. This training will include modules from the Vocational Qualification in Sports. Also, a dual-career model designed for athletes is being designed for Chinese education providers.

More information
Antti Jokinen, Physical Education Teacher, Kisakallio Sports Institute,

Quality management in China, business training in South-Africa

Tampere Adult Education Centre TAKK partners with educational institutions in Guangzhou, Southern China to develop vocational education and training professionals’ competence as well as student services.

Participants of the quality management workshop from GZPYP with their trainer, Ms. Satu Neuvonen, Development Director from TAKK

In 2017, TAKK offered a quality management further education program for Guangzhou Panyu Polytechnic (GZPYP). The goal of the program was to transfer experience and innovate quality management potential. TAKK supported the partner in reflecting on how to incorporate quality into daily work and make quality development everybody’s business.

TAKK and GZPYP are expecting an approval for their joint SAFEA application for a three-week period in Finland in 2018 to continue the quality work. The content and the service model will make use of the Finnish Further Qualification for First-level Management.

Business training in South Africa

In South Africa, as member of the Finnish startup, Polar Partners, TAKK offers a Vocational Qualification in Business for a private school group aiming to launch their first VET institution in South Africa. The goal is to continue to introduce a number of carefully localised qualifications for the region and the labor market.

This model can be replicated in other countries either directly with an institution or through a company. With an active educational partner aiming to the set up a VET college or to improve the quality of an existing institution, the best solutions of Finnish VET can be integrated into the local curricula. The Finnish qualifications are flexible, personalized, competence-based, working life -oriented and broad-based solutions.

Further information
Ulla Virtanen, International Advisor, Tampere Adult Education Centre TAKK,

Supporting entrepreneurship in Uganda

From spring 2018 on, refugees in Uganda will have the opportunity to graduate from the Finnish Further Qualification in Entrepreneurship. The qualification program is organized by FCA and Omnia Education Partnerships in close cooperation with UNHCR.

Entreprenership students with their trainer Kimmo Niskanen from FIEM in Uganda in December 2017

”Finnish qualifications have a good reputation globally. The qualification training opens up new opportunities for both employment and further studies for the refugees,” says Ville Wacklin, the Project Manager of FCA.

Not only qualification, but sustainable change

The qualification training aims at improving the refugees’ chances to succeed as entrepreneurs. The training is customized to the local context together with the Ugandan experts. “Our model emphasizes sustainability. We train and certify locals as trainers who then go on to train at refugee settlements.

The curriculum and assessment process ensure that we uphold Finnish standards,” says Mervi Jansson, CEO of OEP.

Further information
Ville Wacklin, Project Manager, FCA,
Mervi Jansson, CEO of Omnia Education Partnerships,
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