The project POLKU – International talents as resource for expanding companies, aims to help international students in HEIs in the Turku area to act as a productive part of the local industry after graduation. The focus is on a win-win situation where individual students can find a position according to their level of education and career plans at the same time as the industry in the Turku area can get new competences (cultural, language, innovation etc.) and contacts that further their development and internationalization.

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The project is focusing on establishing clear paths of services for international students based on if they intend to stay in Finland after graduation, either as an employee or as an entrepreneur, or if they plan to move away.

Depending on which of these three major paths they intend to take this project provides the services needed for the individual and for the specific path.

We differ between three different phases:

  • new arrival, the student has just arrived to Turku
  • general integration to the new environment
  • transition to employment or entrepreneurship

The project relies heavily on the cooperation between the project partners and other relevant actors. The aim is to find mutual benefits and synergies by working together and streamlining services that individual actors already provide for the target group. The aim of this project is not so much to invent new concrete services as such, but rather to find, show, make use and develop existing ones already provided.

The results from this project are expected to be easily integrated in the normal services of the project partners and other relevant actors.

Project period: 1.6.2015-31.5.2018

Steering committee:
  • Gurli-Maria Gardberg, Åbo Akademi University (chairperson)
  • Anssi Kaisti, City of Turku
  • Erkki Härkönen, University of Turku
  • Anu Härkönen, Turku University of Applied Sciences
  • Jari Kauppila, Team Finland/ELY centres (co-chairperson)
  • Satu Nurmi, TYY
  • Timo Ruoko, Union of Professional Engineers in Finland
  • Tuomas Martikainen,  Migration Institute of Finland
  • Kosar Mahmood, expert

Experts to be invited to the meetings of the steering committee:

  • Minna Koivukangas, ELY centres
  • Jan Kraufvelin (ÅAU/Career services)
  • Annika Stålfors (ÅAU/CLL)

Rapporteur and secretary for the steering committee:

  • project coordinator Mona Riska (ÅAU/CLL)

Contact information: