Opening of the Academic Year in Helsinki and Vaasa

Opening of the Academic Year in Helsinki and Vaasa

Hanken's Rector Karen Spens stated in her speech that internationalisation and continuous learning are at the core of the activities at Hanken in the years to come. Chairman of the board Björn Wahlroos was awarded Hanken's medal of gold.

Rector Karen Spens opened the 110:th academic year in Helsinki and the 39:th in Vaasa with a speech about Hanken’s long history of being a popular place of study.

- The interest for Hanken as a place of study is continuously strong. We received a total of 1254 applications for Hanken’s integrated Bachelor’s and Master’s programme in Vaasa and Helsinki – a record number. Last year the fast-track places at Hanken Open University sold out in two minutes, this year they were sold out in two seconds, said Spens.

Spens stated that Hanken today is an internationally known and accredited business school where internationalisation has been a strong leading line ever since the first EQUIS accreditation in 2000. The renewed five year EQUIS accreditation is a signal of continued good work at Hanken.

- Another way of strengthening our international profile was to sign the cooperation agreement with Fulbright Center in 2016. The agreement provides prominent American Scholars the opportunity to lecture and conduct research during a visit at Hanken, and so far we have had seven scholars here. The network and contacts made through the visits at Hanken’s departments are invaluable.

Spens pointed out that one of the new challenges, in a world of changing demands and conditions in work life, is to create flexible and updated knowledge and skills for the working population. University studies should be central during the whole active working career.

- Continuous learning has been proposed to become a core mission of the Finnish universities in the new university law. This will be an essential part of what Hanken will be focusing on in the years to come, Spens concluded.

Mayor Jan Vapaavuori pointed out that Hanken has a given place among the universities in Helsinki and that the city sees Hanken as a forerunner in internationalisation. Vapaavuori also called for students to be brave – to become a good leader, one must dare to say the uncomfortable and even take unpopular but necessary decisions.

Chairman of the Board Björn Wahlroos argued that the purpose of life is to influence every organisation that you are involved in so that you leave the organisation a little bit better than it was when you joined it. The ceremony was capped off with
Wahlroos, being awarded Hanken's medal of gold for his efforts in favour of the School during his eight years of chairmanship. He has successfully followed his own defiance since Hanken today is both academically and economically stronger than when he took office eight years ago.


Björn Wahlroos mottar Hankens medalj i guld