I started studying tourism research at the University of Lapland in 2010. Before that I worked abroad in tourism for a number of years, as a tourist guide in one job. My interest in tourism grew deeper and I decided to go do a university degree in the subject.
I’m from Oulu and applied to the University of Lapland because it is the only place in Finland where you can major in tourism. Although I used to think that I couldn’t live any farther north than Oulu, I have really enjoyed living in Rovaniemi. It’s an international and lively town for a young student.
Of the additional opportunities offered by MTI, one I have seized during my studies is the Event Tourism module, which is completed in the form of a project with students from the University and the University of Applied Sciences. Our project was to handle the practical arrangements for the Nordic Symposium and Hospitality Research event held at the University in 2011. We took care of these from beginning to end: the AV equipment needed in the rooms, receiving the guests, the evening transportation, meals and so forth. The project studies included introductory lectures, after which we were divided into groups according to the tasks that had to be carried out. A project director and assistants were chosen for each group. After the event, the groups submitted reports to the teacher in charge on the work they had done and their experiences. The event went very well indeed, and the module offered us the opportunity to see first-hand what all will be involved in arranging similar events.
I am also on the board of Jalot Villit ry. (‘Nobel savages’), the student organization for students majoring in tourism research. I joined the board in my first year as a way to meet people and because it gives you a chance to network widely with people in different fields even while you’re a student. The best part of it, besides doing things together, was learning new things. Working in the student organization means organizing events as well as looking out for students’ interests and trying to promote interaction. We also tried to work with the student organizations at the University of Applied Sciences - Kaamos and Retro. The only students majoring in tourism research are the ones at the University of Lapland, so it’s nice to have other student organizations in the same field this close, with whom you can plan things and try to make a contribution!
Jenny Janhunen began her studies in tourism research at the University of Lapland in 2010.