Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Marketing Communications Campaigns for a Tourism Region in UK

Participants happy with the campaigns

Students Satu Aholin, Jenni Ojanen, Sara Sahlakari, Victoria Mather and Roberto Chavez Molina from Tampere University of Applied Sciences, School of Business and Services participated in March in an advertising and marketing communications project, organized by Southampton Solent University from UK. Hampshire Cultural Trust had given the assignment to project teams.  The coordinator of the team from Finland was Senior Lecturer in Marketing Pirkko Varis.

Jenni and her team members
The aim was to raise the profile of Hampshire as a destination for world class culture and to encourage visitors to the venues managed by the Hampshire Cultural Trust. Hampshire has many notable heritage destinations alongside those managed by the Hampshire Cultural Trust, including the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, the home of Jane Austen in Chawton, the Titanic heritage in Southampton with its SeaCity Museum and the magnificent Winchester Cathedral.
Working on the assignment
Prior to travelling to Southampton market surveys including focus group discussions were conducted in five countries, the results were presented in the beginning of the week and the findings were used in the planning process. Special lectures were given by experts in marketing communications and advertising. Staff members of the universities worked as coaches for the teams. The programme included also a visit to Winchester.
Caroline Barfoot and guidelines for pitching
Over 30 university students representing the fields of marketing, advertising, media, international business and tourism from Belgium, Finland, Germany, Spain and UK worked in multicultural teams and developed marketing communications campaigns to promote Hampshire as a cultural destination across Europe. The teams combined traditional marketing tools with digital and social media in their marketing communications campaign proposals.
The winning team with the advertising agency representative
Academic Leader Caroline Barfoot from Southampton Solent University together with her assistant Florian Francois really had made a lot of effort for planning the activities of the week.  There was a balanced combination of lectures, teamwork and visits in the programme and also time for some parties and having fun together.  Thank you Caroline and Florian for a great experience!
Best presentation team with Caroline Barfoot and the agency representative. Victoria on the right.
Text: Team from Finland
Photos: Richard Berry, Southampton Solent University, UK

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Sustainability in Tourism

This is a one-period course for TAMK IB-Tourism students and for exchange students as well. The atmosphere has been truly international, since majority of the group are foreign students from many different countries all around the world! 

What have we been studying there? Our teacher, Ms Heli Leskinen, has introduced us more deeply to sustainability in tourism – ideally it should not harm environment, economy and society of destinations, but it should support them. The concept itself seems very hard, nearly impossible to achieve, but it is something necessary for the future of destinations and also for the industry itself.
As our first, “warm-up” project, we worked in groups researching all the possible tourism impacts and trends in chosen destinations, as well as thinking of own suggestions how to improve the current situation. This gave us even deeper insight to tourism issues.

Joint kitchen facilities at the Dream Hostel

Our second project was done for a real company – Dream Hostel Tampere. In order to get inspired and get to know more about what can a hotel do to be more sustainable, we first visited Scandic City Hotel in Tampere. Scandic is a leading hotel chain in sustainability in Nordic countries and we had the great opportunity to talk to the local manager about their actions and plans. 

Rooms for up to eight people 

After that, we visited Dream Hostel and hotel, talked to the owner and to one of their employees and we had a tour around the facilities. This hostel and hotel is a small family-owned company, so doing most of the actions a big chain can afford – for example acquiring an eco-label, is impossible for them. Our task here was to come up with suggestions which the small company could do to be more sustainable, but which would also meet their budget.

 Friendly warm reception

TAMK Proacademy

Proacademy is an entrepreneurship education unit of TAMK. It is located in the city centre of Tampere at Finlayson Campus. At Proacademy all coaching, learning and business development activitities are focused on facilitating the entrepreneurial path. At Proacademy the students have five core value-activities of trust, courage, learning, actions and success. Proacademy also implements a unique approach to continuous development of a learning community, based on team learning and self-managed development of relevant knowledge and skills.

Our sustainability in tourism group visited Proacademy at Finlayson on the 19th of February 2015. We went there to visit Eventia team, which is the so called business and tourism team.Our group had prepared a teaching session about sustainability to the Eventia team. Later we had workshops, which we divided into social, environmental and economic groups. The Eventia team had to find slutions for, for instance negative environmental impacts in a destination, and then present the findings to others.

We had an interesting morning at Proacademy and definitely a different kind of ”lecture”. Both our group and the Eventia team seemed to like it and everybody learned something new.

We did a brief interview with three students from the Eventia team.

1. Did you learn anything new? - ”Yes definitely. We already knew something about the subject but we learned the definition of sustainability better.”

2. How did you like the teaching method? - ”It was great. It was good to have the theory first and then put it in practice.

3. How was the overall experience? - ”Yes it was very interesting and also fun to do something really different from a normal day. Which was really interesting was how multicultural today was and how many more viewpoints we got to our discussions."

Exchange student Mary Papadimitriou says:

After spending two months studying in TAMK I am able to understand the differences between my studies in Finland and my studies in Greece. The way of studying and teaching is different in each country. In Greece I had to learn a lot of stuff by heart and then participate in a written exam. What is more, the teaching method is kind of the same, with lectures and guest lecturers but in Greece I did not participate in such workshops. 

I have really enjoyed my time here and especially the courses. The Sustainability in Tourism course with Heli Leskinen has been a tremendous opportunity for me to learn more things on the field of Tourism. I specifically liked the Dream hostel task and the Proacademy experience during this course. They really helped me understand the meaning of sustainability in hospitality management and they actually helped me to be make more sustainable choices in my everyday life.

Text and photos:
Sara Sahlakari, Anne Marie Dvorakova, Mary Papadimitriou 

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

The International Week for Research, Development and Innovation - Workshopping and networking “People in the main role!”

The fourth International Week for Research, Development and Innovation is going on at TAMK Kuntokatu Campus on 9.-12.2.2015. In total 20 staff members of higher education institutions from Belgium, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland and UK are participating the week. Here you can see some pictures from the week:

The workshops of the week concentrate on three different themes:
-    Design of future Services
-    Low carbon economy and energy efficiency
-    Digitalisation and Industrial Internet

The aims of the workshops are to find common topics of interest and turn the new ideas into international project proposals for obtaining project funding. Workshop teams are led by TAMK´s inspiring leaders: Aki Korpela, Kari Kallioharju, Tarja Tittonen, Seija Pajari-Stylman, Petri Pohjola and Juho Jaakkola. The working in the teams is very intensive with people who you haven´t met before, therefore lots of motivation and a strong team spirit is needed to get good results. After the workshops all active participants are rewarded with relaxing sauna evening!

It was also our pleasure to serve hospitality and service by our students in the get-together party on Tuesday evening. The guests of International Week for Research, Development and Innovation and a parallel International Week for Engineering got the chance to know each other. The menu was delicious and inspired by Finnish nature and ingredients. Thank you Senior Lecturer Sami Salonen and the third year student team!

Here you can find more information of the IWRDI:

Text:Ella Kallio and Ursula Helsky-Lehtola
Pictures: Josefiina Kemppinen and Ursula Helsky-Lehtola

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Visitors from the “Lucian Blaga” University of Sibiu, Romania

TAMK International Services had a pleasure to welcome two colleagues from Romania on 2nd of February 2015 to visit the TAMK main campus. The reason for this visit was to create links between TAMK and ULBS. The visitors were Mr Silviu Nate and Mr Dacian Popa.  ULBS has 23 000 students and more than 300 partner universities all over the world.

During the visit Romanian colleagues met Ms Kirsi Tolvanen, Head of International Services, Mr Riku-Matti Kinnunen, International Coordinator for Engineering, Technology and Natural Resources and Ms Riitta Vihuri, International Coordinator for TAMK School of Business and Services.

One interesting detail about Mr Popa needs to be mentioned. He studied at TAMK International Business programme during 2004-2007 and he still has tight links to Tampere and Finland.

Visitors’ impressions about TAMK were very positive:

At Tampere University of Applied Sciences we met a dynamic and open team for promoting academic internationalization. Visit at TAMK was a real pleasure to observe a successful combination between academic vision for preparing future generations by providing practical support and educational infrastructure at the highest level.

The relatively similar volume of TAMK’s and ULBS’s ERASMUS+ mobility, study visits, and International Weeks represent excellent prerequisites for future collaboration between our universities.

From the left: Riitta Vihuri, Dacian Popa, Silviu Nate and Kirsi Tolvanen

Text: Kirsi Tolvanen, Silviu Nate and Dacian Popa
Photo: Krista Merikoski