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Jyväskylä going green for St. Patrick’s Day!

Welcome to my second entry in the sports blog, and this time I’ll be focusing on St. Patrick’s Day and the Irish community in Jyväskylä.

 

St. Patrick’s Day will fall on Friday the 17th of March this year and although it’s not a national holiday here in Finland (yet!) it will be celebrated with just as much vigour.

 

Jyväskylä is home to a GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association) football club with about sixty members in total. These members come from around the world and the majority of the members have never played Gaelic football before. One of my favourite experiences I have had is playing and being part of the Jyväskylä GAA team, the team has a great team ethos and there is a real sense of community in this group of multi-nationals. The remarkable thing about this club is that there are only five Irish members and the rest are from all over the world.

 

That’s all from me this time,

Slán agus Lá fhéile Pádraig sona dhuit!IMG_0277

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Springtiiime ?!?

I’m so glad that I had to write this blog today and not any days earlier! This weekend gave me the first glimpse (very very distant but still) of springtime. Not in terms of temperatures, which is still around -10, but in terms of sunny days and feeling the warmth of the sun in your skin!

Today is the first weekend that I didn’t spend home stressing about deadlines. I finally got to experience the Finnish ice-swimming (pic below) and running in (!) the middle of the lake.
We are now right in the middle of the second semester, some course has already been concluded, some haven’t even started. I feel like I’m in the right path now, trying to get things done without stressing too much.
Haven’t be easy after christmas holidays that i spent in sunny Italy. I remember the moment in which i landed in Helsinki and the Finnish weather hit me with almost -27 degree. I could barely breath! However, that seemed to be the coldest day of winter and I just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time =)

I also think that are also getting easier since we might have found our own balance, our own routine.

Thesis is still a taboo though, and did not really developed from October, since it has been very hard to combine both studies and research. However, teachers are very understandable and patience with every students.

Trip to Helsinki

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Ice-swimming crew!

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LET’S MAKE IT HAPPEN

The base and solid ground obtained after completing courses in the first term help us students to better accommodate ourselves in the pleasant environment of the university campus and the city of Jyväskylä. Second semester has already began Now it is time to do real studies, become even more hard working in pursuing our personal, study, and career goals.

Christmas holiday, winter break, and seeing my family and friends back at home showed me where I will be always welcome and how much that places mean to me. If you want to be successful and happy in your life do not look back much, keep good memories, learn from failures, but importantly lift your head and walk ahead. At that time I cleared my mind and I have firmly decided to work harder and fully focus on my next goal – master thesis.

It is important to not get lost in the maze of information! Nowadays, information is available everywhere but which is truthful one and which one is trying to mislead you? The courses gave me the opportunity to listen, share, and exchange  opinions about diverse topics and to choose reliable sources of information. It is wonderful to hear viewpoints of professionals and experienced researchers which opens novel and novel door in approaching my topic from different perspectives.

Let’s make it happen! I told myself after listening to these guys. In addition to that I am reading articles related to my research area. By reading articles I realized that there is still a lot to explore. Sharing my observations with senior lecturer, who advices me, helps to profile my thesis. Through supervisor I got to cooperate with finnish researcher who familiarize me with current research thoughts and needs in Finland and internationally. For that reason I am seeking for summer internship wherever in Europe to employ my knowledge and gather data for my research. I have already sent few emails and planning to send more and more.

Fingers crossed!!! 😀

I encourage you to study abroad, and do internship too so you broaden your horizons!!

 

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New Year, New Me bullsh*t

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Every year is a new start. True. People make New Year’s resolutions. Yes. Did I make one? Oh yes. How is it going? Not very well.

Sounds familiar? I can comfort that you are not the only one who has failed. I promised myself that this year I won’t leave the assignments to the last minute. I hate stress, but I cause it to myself too often. Nothing causes stress as much as the coming deadlines. And I don’t even do anything about it. I always start too late, just one night before the deadline. I know, this is very stupid. However, I don’t get anything done earlier. The deadline has, somehow, always been the best motivator for me.

I faced this problem again during the past week. We had three deadlines for the learning logs of Winter School. One on Monday, one on Tuesday and the last one on Friday. And when I started to write them? In the morning of the deadline day. How stupid was I? I spent approximately nine hours in front of my laptop just to finish one assignment. Then another nine hours for the second one. Luckily, one of the learning logs was not that broad, but also that one took like two hours to finish. I almost cried when I was struggling with the assignments and wondered why I didn’t start earlier. Somehow I managed to return the assignments before the returning boxes closed. But it was a damn big job!

When will I learn not to torture myself? My New Year’s resolution failed, but I didn’t fail with the deadlines! My mom has always told me that “don’t worry, you are the person who will survive the deadlines no matter what”. But would it be possible to survive without a mental breakdown? 😀 We will see how it is going during this spring semester…

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Winter School…

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Picture this… 2 weeks of intense learning, meeting students from around the world, 5-9 ECTS up for grabs, AND the opportunity to participate in Winter Sports such snowboarding, skiing and ice skating. Sound like an opportunity not to be missed? Yep it sure is. From January 9 – 23, the University of Jyvaskyla hosted their annual Winter School programme consisting of two learning modules and the practical sessions of the winter sports. The number of practical sessions are :

  • 2 skiing / snowboarding
  • 1 Cross country skiing
  • 1 Ice Skating/ Ice Hockey (for the more advanced)
  • 1 outdoor trip for approximately 5-6 hours
  • 1 Winter Olympics games session to round off the 2 weeks

In total a group of 38 students descended on Jyvaskyla from around the world, ready to learn, party and take on the slopes of Laajavouri. Many have not seen snow before, and others like myself have never tried sports such as snowboarding, skiing or ice skating.

Before the first session, there was excitement in the air, and a little nervousness, as we clutched our skis and boards and headed outside to the slopes of Laajavouri. But we needn’t have worried. Under the expert tutelage of Riikka and Ani, we learnt the basics before being let loose on the slopes.

I enjoyed all the sessions including ice skating although I felt like a baby giraffe taking its first steps. Many of the students whom I spoke with also expressed their enjoyment not only of the practical sessions, but the entire 2 weeks of the Winter School. If you get a chance, check it out for next January – hopefully we’ll see you next year!

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Wrapping Up 2016 (already?!)

I find it easy to agree with what my classmates have said in the previous posts with our time flying, busy schedules, wonderful group. Honestly, I have barely noticed the surrounding change of seasons.

I thought I wanted to write something  for people currently balancing their decision of whether or not to apply for this program, comfortably living in their home cities. Before moving back to my home town for the autumn 2016 I was living and working in Helsinki,- as the case has primarily been for the past five years. Now being really honest, this was one issue I was concerned of; I reaaaally didn’t want to live in Jyväskylä again (need to go forward, not return backwards)!

Perhaps some of you readers are thinking about that move as well?

Well come here, it’s worth it! I am so very happy, grateful and relieved that 1. I decided to apply for this program, 2. I actually got in and 3.  I let go of my apartment in Helsinki which I was also considering to keep: now the focus is set on future possibilities. For me, this program is an awesome opportunity to combine knowledge in the fields of sports and business. The studies are flexible towards everyone’s interests and backgrounds, letting us dig inside the subjects we are most keen on, and therefor motivated to building our expertise around; moving forward fast, definitely not backwards at any point.

I think that the previous is one major reason of such an awesome group forming. We come from different backgrounds; sports, media, marketing, health studies etc., different cultures and have different aims for our future. We are not competing against each other (how could we?). Instead we encourage, learn from these different perspectives and move forward… towards the New Year 2017!

Therefor it is time to wrap up the first semester, and soon the year 2016. I am excited to seeing what the spring will bring for us, in addition to the reappearing, hiding sun. One thing I have definitely been reminded about,  in this autumn is; don’t leave tasks to last minute! 🙂

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First semester is gone by in the blink of an eye

semester-first-lifeI still remember my first day at University of Jyväskylä. The day started with meeting my group mates, our faculty, university premises and the city around the University campus. After that, life has moved on very fast. We all were mostly occupied with lectures, classes, exams and busy lunches with friends. However, fun time was never excluded from our busy schedule. I have enjoyed the charming company of my classmates while playing badminton, bowling and also during gym hours. I suppose that our group represents one big happy family in the Liikunta building.

During this fall semester, I have learned so many new things. Being a Master degree student in the faculty of sport and health science, I have started to feel like an academic person. To me, University is like a big ocean and we are swimming into different directions where we want to be. You explore new ideas, face challenges and work hard to reach your goal. The professors, seniors and other students give us the opportunity to flourish. The academic and sport culture in our department motivate me to fight against long cold Nordic winter.

With all my curiosity, I am looking forward to the Winter school 2017 which will start in January. Nordic winter sports, international students and the white winter will certainly create sparks among us. We have already gone through our first semester in the University with success! I am sure that many more challenging yet rewarding days are yet come in our  next semester!