#StudentsOfFinland: Finding my Dreams – Story of Saana

This post is also available in: Finnish Swedish

Hi, everyone!

I’m a sixth year student of architecture on a long and winding road to becoming an architect who doesn’t design houses. When I applied to study architecture, I was looking for an artistic field where one could relatively easily find a steady career. The most important thing I found once I got in to Aalto was not, however, how to design a building or a landscape, but rather that an amazing community, like the one in Aalto, can help you realize almost any and all of your dreams.


“At the moment I’m focusing most of my energy on organizing the AYY Global Development week.” Saana

Dreams, in this case, are an abstract thing. The important one, for me, was to find out who I am, and what I want to do. This is gradually coming true through varied experiences and encounters during my studies. Another dream was to be able to help other people and to solve environmental issues. This will hopefully some day be realized through my career as a researcher – I hope I can provide designers with tools and knowledge to shape a better world. A smaller dream was to become the chairman of our Guild. This one did not come true, but I might be all the happier for it – I lost to someone who was really good at the job, and we had an amazing year working together. Most importantly though, I learned to fail with pride and critically evaluate my own shortcomings, and found some really interesting things to do in the meantime.

At the moment I’m focusing most of my energy on organizing the AYY Global Development week. It’s been an interesting rollercoaster ride – I had a lot of enthusiasm but little actual knowledge about development cooperation in the beginning, and organizing a large group of people and events was not really familiar business either. The task teaches you, however – I’ve learned to be more considerate of my surrounding environment, and to delegate work, which has always been hard for me. It has also been inspiring to watch people come up with great ideas for events, and to take responsibility and learn to make their ideas come true. Working on this project has shaped my interests and skills very differently than it might have if I had been accepted to some of the other posts I applied for at the beginning of the year.

I think you can have an amazing university experience regardless of whether you focus fully on your studies for the whole time or if you decide to take some detours or adventures in student activity, work or anything else. The key thing is that you look for yourself in the middle of all of it: what is the mark you want to leave on the world, and where you can get the experiences to help you achieve that? What experiences bring out the sides of you that you like the most? A lot of times, the easiest way to figure this out is just to have a bit of fun with some awesome people.

I wish for all the Students of Finland to have an enlightening study experience!


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