Hanken School of Economics: Excellent environment, successful graduates

Finland is known for many things: the happiest people in the world, high incomes, beautiful landscapes and the world’s cleanest air. Barbora Stuchlá from the Czech Republic has one more reason for admiring this Nordic country: Hanken School of Economics.

“I have always been a big fan of Finland and aware of the Finnish educational system and its quality,” explains Stuchlá. “I applied to Hanken because of its community feel – I have studied at universities with tens of thousands of students before and wanted to try something different.”

Indeed, one of Hanken’s major strengths is being Finland’s only independent business school of university standing; other business schools are usually part of larger universities. It has 110 years of experience in research and education in economics and business administration. It holds triple accreditation – EQUIS, AACSB and AMBA – a feat that only 1% of business schools worldwide can boast of.

What’s more, Hanken happens to be one of Finland’s most international and well-known universities, a definite plus for foreign students. Chinese national Fangbing Wang, who has previously lived in Finland due to her work in Finnish enterprise and tech startups, agrees: “Hanken is very reputed among Finnish students and employers. It’s a place where everyone dreams to get into.”

Hanken School of Economics

Fangbing Wang. Source: Hanken School of Economics

What sealed the deal for Wang, however, was their outstanding teaching quality. “I got the chance to have a few courses at Hanken before I applied for my master’s programme, and I was really impressed by the teaching quality and how well it links theory to practice. It was a no-brainer that Hanken was my first choice and it has been one of the best decisions I have ever made,” enthuses Wang, who took up Business and Management, and Marketing.

Throw in knowledgeable and affable faculty as well, and you can see why over 2,500 students from all over the world choose Hanken’s bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programmes.

“My most memorable class was ‘Gender, Management and Organisation’ taught by Janne Tienari. I think it was a great example of a course where open discussion was really encouraged and quite a sensitive topic explored with a critical approach,” says Stuchlá, who enrolled in the MSc in Economics and Business Administration (International Strategy and Sustainability).

Others chose Hanken for different reasons. For example, Jennifer Huttunen’s Espoo family house is nearby, giving her an opportunity to pursue the MSc in Economics and Business Administration closer to home.

“I found the programme in Hanken enticing as it offers some flexibility to learn slightly outside my educational background,” says Huttunen, adding that she particularly enjoyed Professor Timo Korkeamäki’s Capital Budgeting and Professor Othmar Lehner’s FinTech classes.

Hanken has identified several key areas of strength to ensure their research standards remain internationally competitive. This means their faculty members are often at the top of their game where research is concerned, helped by the fact that Hanken is involved in many joint research projects.

As Hanken operates in both Helsinki and Vaasa, students benefit from the strong connections and partnership programmes with the corporate world as well. A significant number of Finnish businesses – in services, finances and exports – are based there. Vaasa is famous for having the biggest energy technology cluster within the Nordic countries too.

When you add stellar research strengths and opportune locations together, the end result is superb access to the extensive network of companies and alumni for hands-on opportunities. For this reason, Marco Eckhardt from Germany – in taking up a master’s degree in Management and Organisation as well as International Strategy and Sustainability – well remembers one main highlight.

“I got the chance to be the CEO for a small consulting firm. Working with a team of nearly 20 students from all sorts of academic backgrounds and nationalities was an experience I would not want to miss,” shares Eckhardt.

The Finnish government strongly encourages international talent to come there for study, research and work. With the Hanken International Talent management programme, international master’s students at Hanken School can build up their Finnish network and have support in finding their career path. Already, Eckhardt is a training coordinator for Porsche Finland, Stuchlá works as an in-house growth strategist, and Wang co-founded a logistics tech startup with funding from Silicon Valley.

Little wonder that Hanken has obtained 14 ‘A’ scores overall in its U-Multirank performance with the strongest being International Orientation, and is ranked #55 among business schools for the Masters in Management programme (2021 Financial Times).

If you have always wanted to study in an outstanding business school in the world’s happiest country that genuinely supports international talent to study and work, Hanken School of Economics is that place for you.

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Hanken School of Economics: Where a Hanken education can take you

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