International Week Helsinki

Helsinki International Week is held every year in October and welcomes about 20 international students from Europe and Asia to experience the Finnish business culture and student life. As usual, the one-week went by fast and was full of exciting activities.

On the first day we were headed to the cottage and enjoyed the Finnish sauna – not forgetting to jump in the freezing lake after that! However, that wasn’t the only time we enjoyed sauna since we also visited the beautiful Helsinki Allas Seapool, only just opened in September.


One of the highlights of the week was the company visit to KONE in Hyvinkää. KONE is one of the largest manufacturers of elevators and escalators worldwide. Their Innovation Manager had prepared us an interesting presentation and our visit included also tours in their showroom and factory. KONE’s brand promise “Dedicated to People Flow” is definitely seen in their business. It is not just the elevators, escalators or doors in the building – it is something much more. Their aim is to solve how people can move inside the building as smoothly as possible; people flow.

The showroom displayed different types of services and projects that KONE offers. One of the most interesting projects currently on progress is the Kingdom Tower in Saudi Arabia, which will be the world’s tallest building rising to a height of more than one kilometer once completed in 2018. For the building, KONE will deliver the world’s fastest elevators (more than 10 m/s) that will go up to 660 meters. We also had the chance to visit KONE’s factory. KONE delivers many customized projects and therefore the process of manufacturing elevators can be more detailed than one could imagine.


The week also included another company visit to Fiskars, the academic table party “Sitsit” and a trip to Suomenlinna sea fortress on a beautiful sunny day. The farewell gala was held at Saha in Otaniemi. International students had prepared a traditional dish from their own country and everyone got to taste exotic foods from different parts of the world. On the last day we participated in Sillis so it can be said that the students got to know the real Finnish student life. All in all, the week was a success and we were really lucky with the amazing weather we had. Until next time, IW Helsinki!

Ursula Mikkola, IW Helsinki Team