Nature Tourism in Finland

Tourism Activities programme has hosted the first official international study module on nature sports tourism in Jyväskylä 14 August – 8 September 2017. 

Teachers Hanna Syvälahti and Timo Lehtonen, led by Programme Manager Eeva-Liisa Hjelt, have created a 3-4 week module that integrates the incoming students into a Finnish class and immerses all participants into the possibilities of Finnish nature tourism. The incoming participants were 9 learners from SŠGT Celje High school for tourism (Slovenia) and 5 learners from BBS Wittmund (Germany).  The concept has been tested and developed in previous years, with participants from Germany, Estonia and Italy.  The programme this time included e.g. kayaking, fat biking, nature trails, Finnish food and sauna culture, a variety of summer activities as well as great events.  For the Finnish students the module has also been an excellent opportunity for Internationalisation at Home (IaH).

The module is developed based on the current teaching programme at our college with the help of the ECVET recommendation to facilitate easier validation and recognition at the sending organisations. The module is described in terms of learning outcomes (knowledge, skills and competences) and the assessment is done in a valid, reliable and transparent manner.

The expected learning outcomes of the module were:

  • to use appropriate equipment in different situations (various outdoor activities)
  • to take care of equipment (maintenance)
  • to take care of different venues (preparatory tasks, service, cleaning, maintenance)
  • to utilize sector specific language in customer service situations and guiding (English)
  • to take responsibility for guidance
  • to take care of own safety and to take care of customer safety (theory of safety plans in practical assignments)
  • to co-operate in his/her working community, to work in a team
  • to assess his/her own work and actions

The  development of the module will continue in the Winter School which will take place in March 2018, when the Ma17b class  will study nature tourism activities in completely different conditions with another group of incoming Erasmus students.

Photos courtesy of SŠGT Celje

More information:

Teachers Hanna Syvälahti (at) and Timo Lehtonen

International Coordinator Rea Tuominen (at)

GBS St. Gallen in Jyväskylä

Board  members of GBS St. Gallen from Switzerland have visited Jyväskylä Educational Consortium for two very  intensive days 24-25 August 2017. 

The visitors were given an extensive overview of the organisation, education system and all the development going on at the moment. GBS St. Gallen is since several years a partner for the media  sector (printing, photography). They are also one of the external partners in the KA2 project Commercialpolis. One of the concrete aims of this visit was to expand this cooperation to other fields and to the strategic level as well.

Amongst many other things the principals and managers of GBS St Gallen (name list below) were introduced to Finnish vocational teacher training,  development regarding digitalisation of both processes and learning, quality assurance, language teaching and guidance processes. Teacher training was presented by Harri Keurulainen, Hannele Torvinen and Tuulia Kiilavuori from JAMK Teacher Education College.

Thursday afternoon the visitors met with Principal Pirjo Kauhanen to discuss the organisational changes and the VET reform.

Friday morning was devoted to regional development and global partnerships presented by Director of Development Anu Tokila and Programme Manager Marleena Tuuri.


During the visit both parties found out that, although there are significant systemic level differences, there are a lot of similiarities on strategic level that can be advanced through cooperation between the two VET providers. In the more immediate future there is hope to work on issues around digitalisation as well as staff and student mobilities. We are expecting the first mobilities to take place during this school year from electrical engineering and hairdressing programmes.

Participants from GBS St. Gallen

  • Lukas Reichle, director of GBS
  • Daniel Kehl,  deputy-director of GBS, head of vocational education and training at GBS
  • Thomas Klement, head of the technical departement of GBS
  • Patrik Forrer, head of the school of design of GBS
  • Nicole Bauer, head of KSD – social care team of GBS
  • Jürg Pfeiffer, head of paedagogical advice and support team of GBS
  • Michael Andrist, head of IT at GBS

More information on the Commercialpolis project: project

Picture credit: Daniel Kehl

More information: Rea Tuominen, international coordinator


EMEU4ALL Health Care team meets in Duisburg

The EMEU4ALL Health Care partners met at Sophie-Scholl Bk Schule in Duisburg (DE) on 4-5 July 2017. The team updated the status of the planning of the modules and discussed the more detailed schedules of the study modules.

The planning is in good process and the students are interested in the programmes offered. The minutes are documented and the team has  a plan how to proceed. Jyväskylä College will be hosting the first module starting at the end of September this year and we are expecting 4 students from Germany and the Netherlands to take part.

More information: Pirkko Lahti (at) and





Meteliä Trondheimissä

Meteli -verkoston koordinaattorit vierailivat Trondheimissä, Norjassa 28.-31-5-2017

Nyt päättyvän valtionavustushankkeen viimeisen matkan tavoitteena oli verkostoutua trondheimilaisten oppilaitosten kanssa ja kehittää pohjoismaista yhteistyötä sekä tutustua Norjan ammatillisen koulutuksen malliin. Matkalla käytiin läpi nuorten koulutus, oppisopimusmalli sekä ammatillinen aikuiskoulutus. Kyseessä oli ensimmäinen matka, johon osallistuivat koordinaattorit kaikista verkoston oppilaitoksista ja samalla olikin tilaisuus käydä läpi koko projektin tuotokset ja hyödyt. Meteli -verkostoon tällä hetkellä kuuluvat Salpaus, Tredu, Luksia, Axxell ja Jyväskylän ammattiopisto. Verkoston koordinaattorina on alusta alkaen toiminut Salpaus.

Vierailun aikana tutustuttiin kahteen Tronheimin alueen kahdeksasta ammatillisesta oppilaitoksesta: Charlottenlund VGS ja Byåsen VGS.

Vierailun seurauksena sovimme, että vaikka Meteli -verkosto ei enää jatkakaan valtionavustushankkeen tulella, tulee yhteistyö jatkumaan eri tavoin:

  • Asiantuntioiden yhteistyö tulee jatkumaan jossain muodossa tulevaisuudessa (esim asiantuntijavaihdot, työelämä-yhteistyö) Meteli -verkoston välillä
  • Tavoitteena on lähettää opettajia ja muita asiantuntijoita vaihtoon Charlottenlundiin ja Byåsen VGS
  • Haemme Meteli-verkostona KA1 hankerahoitusta jossa panostetaan yhteisiin asiantuntijamatkoihin. Mitkä alat osallistuvat tähän tullaan päättäämään syyslukukauden aikana.

Lisätietoja Rea Tuominen

Business students in Jyväskylä

This spring has been very international in the business department of Jyväskylä College.  Since March we have hosted twelve students from Slovenia, Netherlands and Spain for three to ten weeks. Their programme has consisted of studies at the college and work placements in various retail shops around Jyväskylä.

Teacher Jaana Eirtovaara with Gladys and Sara at K Citymarket Seppälä.

Gladys, Sara, Claudia and Laura came from Malaga, Spain already in the end of March and will be staying until 5 June.  They have already been with us for a month and a half and Sara has learned a little bit of Finnish:  ”I’ve learned a few words in Finnish like moi, kiitos, terveydeksi, hyvää päivänjatkoa, no nii, some fruits and some numbers.”  

When we asked them what have been the best moments during their stay so far Claudia said she enjoyed especially the tour of the town and the frozen lakes. She also likes the fact that Jyväskylä seems to be (and is) a very safe place.  For Sara working at  K-Citymarket has been the best part of the stay. She says that people who work there try to make you feel as comfortable as possible which is wonderful to hear.


Niels (right), Len (left) and Aniek are business students from ROC Friese Poort in the Netherlands. They are staying in Finland for a total of five weeks and have been doing their placement in Palokka either at KCM or KappAhl.



Len recommends packing a good pair of shoes suitable for walking.  Aniek very kindly call our hills mountains 🙂 which is understandable considering how flat the Netherlands is compared to Finland but it’s true, in Jyväskylä you need to go up and down hills when getting from point A to point B! This can be especially challenging in the beginning when riding a bike but also a good way to get some excercise in while commuting from accommodation to the college or work.

Larisa, Dani, Mojca, Aljaz and Tina were the last group to arrive from Nova Gorica, Slovenia. They have been on placement in Minimani and Prisma Seppälä. For Mojca placement in Minimani has been the best part. ”I really enjoy working since it’s my first time working and I’m glad I had a chance to work in such an amazing place for the first time.”

We asked everyone our standard question: give three tops and tips (based on your own experience) to someone who is planning to come to Jyväskylä. How should they prepare? What should they do/see/visit/experience and this is what they had to say:

  • Learn some Finnish before coming, like ’en puhu suomea’ just in case.  (You can do it   free online here or  here
  • The people here are very nice and friendly, if you need anything they will always help you. The only disadvantage is that not all people speak English that good, but you can still talk about basic topics.
  • Visit Kuokkala bridge around 11 p.m. because at that time the lights turn on and it is just beautiful.
  • You should also see the ski jumping hill Matti Nykäsen Mäki, go on top of it and enjoy the view over Jyväskylä.

Regarding weather the opinions are mixed. Some recommend bringing a lot of warm clothes (it has been the coldest spring in over 50 years) and others recommend to prepare yourself to feel warmer than you expected – it isn’t as cold as they say.

It’s been lovely to have you all in Jyväskylä and hope you have a safe trip back home when your stay with us is over!

More information Jaana Eirtovaara (at)