The main hall of Centria University of Applied Sciences, located in Kokkola, has an international atmosphere. The buzz of conversation quickly reveals that many students come from abroad. For Centria, degree programmes conducted in English and an active student exchange programme are a strategic choice aimed at supporting the export companies of the area. In and around Centria’s geographical area, there are more international companies than in any other area of Finland.
Centria has just over 3,000 students, and more than 600 of them have a nationality other than Finnish. Centria offers English-language bachelor programmes in Business Management, Information Technology, Environmental Chemistry and Technology, Nursing, and Industrial Management. One MBA programme is also taught in English.
In addition, Centria has a busy student exchange programme with different countries around the world. In 2014, the most popular exchange destinations were Spain, China and Germany. Centria has 130 partner schools, of which the latest are in Chile, Scotland and Brazil.
Centria’s interest is in providing a workforce with global skills for companies. Centria has therefore created a virtual certificate that places the focus on global skills. Students with the badge have proven themselves to be curious, effective and determined by seeking to live abroad, and have also demonstrated that they are unafraid to step out of their comfort zone.
“The Centria Global Competence badge is earned by students who have, for example, studied a part of their degree abroad or have completed a traineeship abroad,” explains International Relations Manager Peter Finell.
Charles Dudoignon from France studies Business Management at Centria. In the future, 19-year-old Charles wants to work in human resources in an international business environment. He will study in Kokkola for six months. “I have already studied for one year at La Rochelle Business School. Finland offered the best options for my studies at the present time,” says Dudoignon.
CENTRAL OSTROBOTHNIA UNIVERSITY OF APPLIED SCIENCES
Business sector: Higher education, research and development
Degree programmes: 22, of which 6 in English
Turnover 2014: €22 million