Blog: Making the ‘Finnish’ line, after a week in Scandinavia

Date 29.09.2017

Two of University of Northampton’s nursing subject lecturers, Emma Dillon and Rachel Beckett, have just come back from Turku University in Finland after being invited to present at the Conference on Health and Wellbeing. In her blog, Emma writes about what happened…

Have you ever been to Finland?

You might not even know where Finland is (it’s the ‘big, long bit’ between Sweden and Norway on an atlas. Keep going east and the first country you land on is Russia) but it’s not the wintry wonderland you might imagine.

And my colleague Rachel and I should know as we have just come back from 5 days there, after being invited by Turku University to talk at a major conference. And what a week it was!

photo emma dillon turku finland

Flower power: Me with some of the other delegates at Turku.

The University is located in the city of Turku, in South Western Finland and is the second largest University in Finland, in terms of student numbers.

I love teaching, but it was refreshing to get out form the lecture theatre and have the opportunity to network with so many international academics and students .

It was also reassuring to see that students across the North Sea also share the passion for health education and wellbeing that ours at Northampton do.

It was also refreshing to see so many young health academics working within European Higher Education Institutes!

Rachel and I presented on, respectively, resilience in nursing and brain injury rehabilitation, but the conference covered a huge array of themes, all at the heart of any nurse’s training:

  • Stress
  • Compassion
  • Person centred care
  • Active Blended Learning
  • Online health promotion
  • Developments in specialist health areas
  • International education partnerships.
photo emma dillon rachel beckett nursing turku

Myself and Rachel hold the audience’s attention in Turku.

We brought back a wealth of new skills and experience that will benefit our staff and students when we return to Northampton, such as student wellbeing/self-compassion, meditation, European nursing (and how is it shaping up) and the transcultural care of yourself, others and of course patients.

We made some excellent links with our fellow peers which we will follow up with future work projects.

Despite the hectic pace, there was time for a little respite and we had a chance to take in some of the sights of Turku, including the oldest church in Turku, the Harbour, the oldest pharmacy, and several university sites (they too are due to relocate in 2018 … just like us!). Rachel was also lucky enough to have a day on a ‘Viking cruise’ as well.

photo turku church finland

Points of interest in Turku, Finland

photo turku finland

Downtown Turku

Thank you Turku for such an amazing, cultural and motivating experience.

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