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Life in Oulu

Oulu University of Applied Sciences (Oamk) is one of Finland’s most attractive universities of applied sciences. The Oulu region is one of the fastest growing areas in the country. Just a one-hour flight from Helsinki and a train connection that takes you straight to the city centre make sure that city of Oulu has an easy access from Southern Finland. With a population of over 211,000, the Oulu region is a major centre of innovative high tech industries, academia, science, services and culture. Welcome to Oulu and Oamk!

Innovative Oulu

Oulu has excellent study and teaching facilities with a wide variety of free time activities and beautiful nature. The Oulu region is a vibrant and interesting destination for students, lecturers and experts, both from Finland and abroad. Only few hours from exotic Lapland and hiking possibilities make Oulu an excellent place for nature lovers. Daily bus connections to one of the biggest ski resorts in Finland, Ruka, during the winter season make it possible for everyone to enjoy snowy slopes and ski routes.

The city of Oulu has been chosen among the 10 most innovative cities in the world for several times in a row. Often referred as the Silicone Valley of Europe. Oulu is highly known for its ICT technology and innovations. This can also be seen in the field of technology at the school of Engineering at Oamk. Students are able to apply for LAB studies, which have been developed to educate experts to game and cloud services. Several study projects are carried out in close connection with work life. In this manner the students are able to form relationships with companies and the personnel already during their studies – a great asset when entering work life.

Free time activities

Riding a bike is a very common and popular way of transportation in Oulu. In fact, almost everyone in Oulu owns a bike and Oulu is one of Finland’s best cities for cycling. Locals and especially students tend to cycle all year round.

Nature is wonderfully present in Oulu no matter where you go. You can spend the day on the beach, have a picnic or a stroll in one of the parks or even go fishing to Oulu river which crosses the city center on numerous locations. Cross-country skiing is a Finnish winter sports favorite, and there are excellent skiing routes across the city. Several nature trails and bird towers are right outside the city. Lapland with its wonderful arctic nature and ski resorts are a three-hour drive away. Lapland is easily accessible via train or bus.

Cultural life in Oulu is versatile and vibrant. You can visit museums, theatres, concerts, movies and different musical events.

UniMove offers versatile sports and wellness services to the students and staff of the Oulu University of Applied Sciences. With one sport pass you can join or get the discount from various sports activities UniMove or City of Oulu offers, from gym to group exercise lessons and sky diving.

Numerous cafes and restaurants make sure that you will not go sleep hungry. Night life is vivid and since Oulu is one of the biggest student cities in Finland, there are traditionally student parties taking place on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Student Union of the Oulu University of Applied Sciences (OSAKO) coordinates tutoring, organizes free time activities, trips and hobby clubs that are available to all students who have paid the student union fee. Student union card comes handy also outside the campus region. With the card, you can get student discounts from several shops, sports activities and transportation. One of the biggest advantages is to have a student priced lunch from any of the campus restaurants.

Housing and living expenses

There are plenty of versatile and affordable housing options available for students in Oulu. Oulu University of Applied Sciences does not have student halls of residence but student housing for all degree students, both Finnish and international, is mainly provided by the Student Housing Foundation of Northern Finland PSOAS. Students can also find housing from private markets.

PSOAS offers over 5,000 flats around Oulu for students, including shared, family and studio apartments. Most of the apartments are unfurnished. Inexpensive self-catering student housing in single rooms is usually offered by the student halls of residence. Most rooms have a communal kitchenette, a toilet and a shower. In Finland tap water is safe to drink. Admitted students should contact PSOAS directly once they receive their acceptance letter. Since Oulu is one of the busiest student cities in Finland, student flats are quickly reserved by new students in early August.

The price of the housing varies depending on the type, size and location of the apartment. The monthly rent in a student dormitory is around 150 to 250 euros, and for a one-room flat around 240 to 420 euros. Please check the latest rents from the PSOAS webpage.

If you want to know more about living expenses, read the article of Study in Finland.