The general country landscape
Finland is a Nordic country the size of California located in northern Europe. It is rather sparsely populated (5.3 million people) and has extensive forests, coastline and lakes. It is a country that has a well-organized and efficient society. The general infrastucture, in conjunction with both public and private services, is considered very effective, and having well run public services such as transportation, police, education and healthcare are fundamental parts of the society. The arts and design, cultural life, nature and sports are highly valued. Finland ranks as one of the world’s most stable nations and has been called the safest country in the world, which makes it an easy place in which to live and travel. It is also ranked as the world’s most sustainable country 2016.
You can read more about Finland online here and here.
Finns believe strongly in equality and education, and the country is especially known for its education system. Finnish higher education institutions engage in world-leading research and offer high-quality academic programs. In relation to its gross domestic product, Finland invests more in research and development than almost any other OECD country. Finnish institutions and researchers are also among the most active scientific publishers in the world. Together with a welcoming and intriguing environment, Finland offers interesting opportunities for American researchers, teachers and professionals. English is widely used at the university level.
The academic year in Finland is based on a two-semester system. The official academic year starts on 1 August and ends on 31 July. However, in the fall semester lectures are usually scheduled between September and mid-December, and in the spring semester between early January and May. Generally there is no teaching during the summer and on public holidays.
For more information on living and studying in Finland, please click here and here.
Fulbright in Finland
Finland has a strong Fulbright program with a unique history. The program has an important role in supporting the internationalization of education and research in Finland, helping U.S. and Finnish institutions create linkages, and promoting a wider exchange of knowledge and professional talents through educational contacts between Finland and the United States. The program has grown in recent years due to the close cooperation of Fulbright Finland with Finnish universitities, research institutions, governmental agencies and private foundations, as well as to U.S. and Finnish alumni contributions. The majority of the program’s funding currently comes from Finland.
The Fulbright Finland Foundation (the Finnish Fulbright Commission) awards grants to American teachers and scholars to teach or pursue research in Finland. The majority of awards are available to scholars in all disciplines, but some awards are limited to certain fields. In nearly all categories, housing is provided for the grantee.
Awards are also available for professionals for career development.
Candidates interested in applying for an award to Finland are welcome to consult the Fulbright Commission’s website for more information.
Fulbright Finland also provides information for Finnish institutions, which applicants are encouraged to utilize when contacting prospective hosts.