Category Archives: JAMK

Fall Semester Review

I find it so difficult to make room for just some post in time during the semester and the holiday came and it was kind of “geek” just to stick with the computer to do all the assignment left with some review on the last semester. That is why I decided to relax a bit before head back to the game!

Enough of going around the bush, here is my last semester reviews:

– Finally I could understand some about French culture, lifestyle and its elegance. Social life is appreciated and people tend to enjoy the time talking, enjoying the food, appreciate the art and fashion, which is very distinct from all Western countries. Normally, the concept “Time is money” usually refers to the developed Western culture, where life is so busy and people tend to be workaholic and deal-oriented. I found French is a great mixture of Western and some Eastern culture from this perspective, who treasure the social time and have a sense of life enjoyment.

– About the language, I did attempt to speak French. At first, it was so frsutrating to learn while I have difficulties in daily life and social attitude pressure towards my terrible French is so high that I felt lost for a short while. However, after trying harder and harder, I realize that despite the difficulty, it was so fun while learning a new language, especially in its own native-speaking-country. People tend to become more open and friendly to you and become so helpful, that’s what encourage me to learn by myself the language everyday.

– While Finland seems to be a bit far up North, La Rochelle has such an advantage location. It definitely attracts a great more people from different countries, which offers me a golden opportunity to have new experience working with new colleagues like: the Swiss, German, French, Indian, Chinese, Afghan, so on and so forth.

– It would be a lost if I did not mention the great Business Game course I had at the beginning week of the semester. Basically, it is a simulation business environment working in the same universe and each team is a entire company. We have General Manager, Marketing Manager, Financial Manager, Human Resource Manager, etc. and we have to make real business decisions, prepare strategic plans, take care of projects during “8 years”. After every year, there will be a report (in real life called “competitor surveys”) on how each business doing and their sales and profits in order to learn from success as well as failure to make the right decisions for the coming year. Lucky and pressure enough, I was appointed as General Manager. Our business lost the most in the first few year and at the end of the game, we are the second in profits, sales and market shares! In short, it was a very exciting course that I hope JAMK will include in the future curriculum (as my friend studying business in Saimaa UAS also had this course last semester).

– I also had such a hard time with Yield Management course! In fact, most my classmates did. A lot of forecast tools and formula, and numbers and we barely had enough time to go into details with enough practices for them. There came the exam! I sweat like a pig during the exam, try to finish everything with my basic instinct! Everybody went out of the examination room with such frustration, afraid that exchange students like us would have to take re-sit exam, which will be in June 2014!! Hearing from my classmates, I checked the exam results last week and it turned out that it is the course I earned the highest grade! Some friends told me half the class scored 15 to 19 out of  20 while the rest could not make it to 5/20. Such a mysterious case!

– It seems that I found out personal interest in Marketing, Relational Marketing, Customer Service etc. When I came to college I still wonder what exactly the path for me is, eventually there is some hints for me, which I feel so happy about and cannot wait to try out for internships. Maybe after the surprise for the Yield Management, I would also want to try some for some hotel I think haha.

– Thanks to the French, I can see there are so much more to learn about the place ones live in and realize the importance of knowing the surroundings, facts, figures to look out for opportunities. In addition, I understand how ambition can lead you somewhere great thanks to a very ambitious and “hardcore professional” (who introduce herself like that rather than being a college teacher). Now I read the news everyday and thanks to that I enrich my conscious about the world really fast and effective. Awesome!

– I had a chance to make new lovely friends and awesome trip to Cognac. It is a small city renowned for tourists to visit brewery and wine making tour. We visited Martell, famous for its Cognac in France though it was such a pity that Remy Martin did not open that day.

– It captured my attention that many French has come to Vietnam for internships, and many of them have great interest in he country and culture. It is understandable that just half a century Vietnam was colonized by the French, but thanks to its, more and more French people nowadays know a lot about Vietnam, which is very interesting to share the cultures.

– Realize many the opportunity in the field of study, especially in touristic country like France- it’s critical to try your best in the field with some faith! There would be a potential investment!

– The sad thing: Study from 9am til 6pm, sometimes as early as 7.30am and lasts until 8pm makes me really tired. Therefore, I have no time to participate in favorite sport – TKD – like in Finland, which makes me feel so distressed and desperate. Health going down a bit for sure.

– Good thing: Sunny almost all the time! The weather is just perfect with its moderate temperature even in winter. Awesome choice in food, cheese and obviously wine! The price of wine is lovely as well. Cannot ask for more! My studio is right at the train station so I can see everyday how many people come and leave La Rochelle, and I have to admit this is such a popular place to visit for the French people!

So it’s set! France one-year exchange (and good food) is waiting for me!!

Eventually I got the acceptance letter from Groupe Sup de Co La Rochelle – La Rochelle Business School. Remember just three months ago I still wondering what could be the destination for me. Anything could change at the last minute and I learned that sometimes life does not lead the way we plan.. Some just turned out to be.. better 😉

When I first come to Finland and know about the exchange program, I would love to go to Italy (thinking back, the reason is again the same: Great FOOD haha). Looking for an Italian language course at JAMK, I was so disappointed to find out it is only taught in Finnish. Okay, so I know what is next for me. Spanish! I started to learn Spanish and really love the sounds of the language. Until the day of filling out online application for exchange on Asio, I still have no doubt about Spain as my exchange place, although the economic situation bothered me a bit. The final turning point came in when I realized that due to the downfall of economic, school in Spain paid less attention and made less investment on English program. At that time, I really don’t think my Spanish is advanced enough to have lecture in Spanish and also assignment and exam written in the language…

At the last minute, I think about French. Never in my life I would imagine I’m gonna (have to) learn the language. Some says it’s like the pain in the ass, some claims such a beautiful language it sounds. For me, it’s just too brand-new. The main reason for the choice of France again is the rich in beauty, wonderful architecture, and Gastronomy – Great cuisine and food (wine also)! It also has to mention that my last Interrail trip around Europe, I had already fallen in love with Paris, with the Louvre, the Seine River, Arc de Triomphe, so on and so forth. Besides, the program majoring in Tourism, in a touristic city La Rochelle. What could be better for my degree of Hospitality Management as well as the life of a totally new and interesting city!

At the moment, the only thing I know is that I gotta learn French fasttt this summer! I feel that French is way better than in the past about the English-speaking attitude..But I got a chance to learn, and that seems to be a destiny, so why not? I don’t know how La Rochelle would be like and could the people there speak English. Hopefully, it would be more alike in Paris.

One more thing is the paperwork. I got some reminder from friends that it would be lengthy, tiring and complicated like in my home country Vietnam. I just hope it would be better than what I already know about my hometown administration..

That’s good for now! The whole summer at home is waiting for me! It’s great that Finnair has just newly open a direct route to Hanoi.

So just 10 hours, I’ll be home, closer than ever. ^^