Savonia Article: Wellness Center experience
Wellness Center is an entrepreneurial learning environment for Savonia’s health-, tourism- and business students. Wellness Center provides wellness services for customer groups from babies to the elderly. At Wellness Center, students practice independent production of services with the support of a teacher and coordinator. Students learn important skills such as entrepreneurship, customer service, clinical skills and planning and implementing wellbeing services. Wellness Center has tens of exchange students in a semester from physiotherapy, nursing and business degree programs.
As a learning environment, Wellness Center offers the opportunity to practice future working life skills also related to international activities. It challenges international students above all to independently plan and implement activities together with other students. In addition, during the training, the skills of dialogue, tolerating different ways of working and adapting to situations are particularly emphasized, as well as practicing them. It is a place where students can, above all, practice future working life skills. (Äijö Marjo 2020, 16).
On the other hand Wellness Center offers domestic students the opportunity to develop their international skills when they work together with foreign students who have come on exchange. With the help of internationalization at home, those students who are not able to go abroad gain international and cultural competence, which an increasingly international and multicultural working life expects from graduating university students. Domestic internationalization is one part of Wellness Center’s intership main guidelines. (Äijö Marjo 2020, 17). (Picture 1)
As an international student in Wellness Center
Carmen Presa Carrera was a Physiotherapy exchange student from University of A Coruña, Spain. She did an internship in Wellness Center as a part of her studies in the spring 2023. Here are her experiences of the internship:
“Stepping foot into the Wellness Centre at the University of Applied Sciences in Savonia as an exchange physiotherapy student, I was warmly welcomed by Wellness Center staff and supervising student who were there to help and guide me all throughout this experience.
This unique institution has provided me with an opportunity to explore a diverse range of activities within physiotherapy, opening doors to endless learning possibilities. All of this was new for me, but I was adamant to make the most of it.
Throughout my time at the Wellness Centre, I had the privilege of participating in a variety of activities that broadened my horizons and challenged me to step out of my comfort zone. Collaborating with fellow students on projects every day presented also a new opportunity for growth and learning. These interactions not only enriched my academic knowledge but also expanded my view on Finnish students and their culture. I would really want to thank them properly for letting me by their side on all these activities and including me all through the process. They have definitely made these experiences even more enriching.
One of the most remarkable aspects of my experience at the Wellness Centre was the chance to explore activities I had never done before. Every day was something different and new for me, preparing for these activities was also a great opportunity to refresh and also acquire knowledge. But beyond the academic and professional sphere, my exchange experience at the Wellness Centre facilitated tremendous personal growth. Living in a new country, immersing myself in a different culture, and interacting with students and clients from various backgrounds and at different stages of their life taught me invaluable life lessons. Everyone was incredibly welcoming and kind, and there are no words to fully describe how at home they made me feel.
I leave Wellness Center with a newly refreshed love for my studies and having grown as a person and developed adaptability, resilience, and a greater appreciation for diversity. In retrospect, my time as an exchange physiotherapy student at the Wellness Centre has been nothing short of amazing. I will forever be grateful for this life-changing experience, as it has shaped not only my career but also my outlook on life.”
Internationality renews competence
Savonia’s strategy 2021-2024 implements the internationalization program of the common university vision. International cooperation develops operations and more effectiveness of education and RDI and business activities. Savonia is partly responsible for the increase in the share of highly educated people by adding foreign parts to the region and is also involved in internationally attractive in innovation ecosystems. (Savonian strategia 2021-2024, 11).
Savonia is a well-known and respected university whose expertise renews itself in international cooperation and functioning networks. Human security – a network built on the basis of connects us to the European research community, which strengthens international R&D activities and the export of know-how. (Savonian strategia 2021-2024, 11). One part of the implementation of the internationalization plan in Savonia is the Wellness Center’s international internships.
Salla Lommi, palvelukoordinaattori Savonia-ammattikorkeakoulu email@example.com
Sanna Hukkanen, projektissuunnittelija Savonia-ammattikorkeakoulu firstname.lastname@example.org
Carmen Presa Carrera, Physiotherapy exchange student from University of A Coruña, Spain.
Äijö, Marjo (toim.) 2020. Vireyttä ja hyvinvointia Viretorilta -kuvauksia viretorin hyvistä kokeiluista ja käytännöistä tulevaisuuteen. 2.painos. Savonia-ammattikorkeakoulun julkaisusarja 10/2020. Nettijulkaisu. [Viitattu 22.6.2023]. Saatavissa: chrome-extension://efaidnbmnnnibpcajpcglclefindmkaj/https://moodle.savonia.fi/pluginfile.php/1200314/mod_resource/content/0/Vireytt%C3%A4%20ja%20Hyvinvointi%20Viretorilta%20kirja.pdf.
Savonia strategia 2021-2024. Savonia kestävän kasvun kumppanina ja osaamisen varmistajana. [Viitattu 22.6.2023]. Saatavissa: https://amksavonia.sharepoint.com/sites/santra-johtaminen/Jaetut%20asiakirjat/Forms/AllItems.aspx?id=%2Fsites%2Fsantra%2Djohtaminen%2FJaetut%20asiakirjat%2FStrateginen%20johtaminen%20ja%20toiminnanohjaus%2FStrategia%2FStrategia%202021%2D2024%2FSavonian%5Fstrategia%5F2021%2D2024%5FFINAL%2Epdf&parent=%2Fsites%2Fsantra%2Djohtaminen%2FJaetut%20asiakirjat%2FStrateginen%20johtaminen%20ja%20toiminnanohjaus%2FStrategia%2FStrategia%202021%2D2024