Here, the energy education pathway is in place, which extends from early childhood education to higher learning institutions.
One of the three main goals of the City of Vaasa 2022-2025 strategy is to make Vaasa carbon-neutral by 202X. Our goal is to be the most energy-smart and energy-efficient city in Finland.
Energy education in early childhood education
Vaasa’s early childhood education and preschool energy pathway
Energy education is part of everyday pedagogy. Play is a central way of working in both early childhood education and preschool education. Play enables movement, exploration and action. Daily life consists of comprehensive knowledge and versatile forms of learning. The activities are guided by the basics of the early childhood education plan 2022 as well as the basics of the preschool education plan 2014.
The central goal of the energy pathway in early childhood education and preschool education is the awakening of children’s interest and participation. Below are examples of the contents of energy education:
Nature and exercise
- Getting to know nature
- Respect for nature
- Getting to know the local environment
- The principles of sustainable development are recognised and followed
- Sorting waste
- Natural materials
- Toy maintenance
Technology supported by the digital plan for early childhood education and preschool education
- Digital competence
- Technology skills
- Experimental and exploratory learning
- Programming while playing
- Digital documentation
Multiliteracy, supported by the cultural path of early childhood education and preschool education
- Searching for information
- Phenomena and concepts
Energy education in basic education
Finnish-speaking basic education
In basic education, the theme of energy is discussed from many different perspectives during grades 1–9. Content suitable for the age level and the goals of the subjects are highlighted in the different grades. Below are examples of courses to study:
Energy path for grades 1-3
- Energy saving and environmental protection
- Nutrition and the food chain
Energy path for grades 4-6
- Waste recycling and saving energy
- Electric energy, saving electricity
- Electricity and heating solutions for your home as well as costs
Energy path for grades 7-9
- Visits to energy cluster companies, sponsored companies, Energy Week – utilisation
- Local energy production
- Food production in Ostrobothnia
- Energy self-sufficiency at the national level, energy sources and availability
- Renewable energy sources
- Sustainable development
Swedish-speaking basic education
The energy path for grades 1–6
All courses deal with energy saving and environmental protection, in a way that is suitable for the age group of the pupils.
- forms of water
- water cycle
- people and food – food chain
- Vaasan Sähkö’s “Hey, everything works” educational package for the 2nd grade course
- sorting waste
- visit to Stormossen or a visit by Stormossen to the school
- The human body – people need energy
- non-renewable and renewable energy sources
Multidisciplinary learning units of basic education:
- Maritime Vaasa
- Sustainable lifestyle – Sustainable people – Sustainable planet
- Me in the world
Borgaregatans skola, grades 7–9
Energy is discussed from different perspectives, mainly in the teaching of physics and chemistry:
- different forms of energy and energy conversion
- comparison of different energy sources for electricity production
- electric energy transport and costs
- energy saving and sustainable development
- energy content of food
Energy production and sustainable development
This year’s 9th grade will have a theme week focusing on energy and sustainable development in the spring. The purpose is to make pupils aware of the issues promoting sustainable development, such as how electricity and heat are produced with renewable natural resources locally and nationally.
The programme includes, among other things
- a visit to Stormossen, Westenergy and Vaasan Sähkö
- workshops related to solar panels and hydro and wind power plants
- lectures and project work related to the theme
Energy education in upper secondary schools and vocational education
Vocational education – Vamia
Vamia is a multidisciplinary vocational education organisation, where approximately 5,000 students study annually. Vamia offers vocational training for young people, adults and working and business life – in three languages. At Vamia, you have the opportunity to build your own study path or update your skills to meet the needs of a changing working life.
At Vamia, energy education is a natural part of the studies. Energy studies are integrated into the teaching, and Vamia has modern learning environments to ensure energy competence.
Good connections to working life and competent teachers
Vamia has connections to working life and offers many degree courses in the energy sector. Students have good opportunities to enter working life, and Vamia has access to a sufficient number of companies in the energy sector available for on-the-job training in all degrees.
Vamia has modern learning environments that make it possible to learn energy skills. Students are well placed in companies in the energy sector; in summer jobs as well as after graduation. The teachers have up-to-date knowledge and information about jobs, work tools, methods and skill requirements in the energy sector, which they pass on to the students.
Vamia is also an international educational institution. Students have the opportunity to complete studies and on-the-job learning abroad as well. You can acquire a foreign exchange destination yourself or use the educational institution’s partners from numerous different countries. All of Vamia’s education programmes offer opportunities for exchange abroad and international experiences.
The optional study offer supports knowledge of the energy sector and related skills. Working life and business services actively offer additional and continuing education opportunities and apprenticeships for working life.
Cooperation between educational institutions
From Vamia, it is possible to continue directly to the Vaasa University of Applied Sciences without entrance exams. A student can apply for a pathway, and during the 3rd year, 30 credits of university of applied sciences studies are completed. The VAMK route is possible in the following degrees: practical nurse, vocational qualification in business (merkonomi), data science, mechanical and production technology, electrical and automation technology, information and telecommunications technology.
TeknoTET and work-experience days for secondary school pupils
Tekno-TET is a versatile introduction to working life programme jointly developed by educational institutions and companies in Vaasa, the aim of which is to highlight the field of technology as a viable study and career option for 9th graders. During these work-experience days, the 8th graders get to learn about professions in the energy sector.
Upper secondary school education
Upper secondary school education at the City of Vaasa takes place at Lykeion, a bilingual upper secondary school campus, where more than a thousand upper secondary school pupils study each year. As a general education, the upper secondary school steers pupils towards a matriculation examination to qualify for entry into higher education.
Vaasan Lyseon lukio
The hard core of energy education consists of mathematics, physics and information technology studies. In addition, energy education is integrated into the subjects. There is close cooperation with Vaasa’s higher education institutions.
Direct routes to Vaasa’s higher education institutions
Vaasan Lyseon Lukio (upper secondary school) offers fast track physics courses for the University of Vaasa’s energy and information technology education programme.
In cooperation with VAMK, separate pathways have been created, on the basis of which courses studied at Vaasan Lyseon Lukio can provide students with a study place at VAMK.
Vaasan Lyseon Lukio’s information technology studies also include a set of three courses with an emphasis on programming, the completion of which is a criterion for direct entry to both the University of Turku and the University of Vaasa.
Working life connections and international education
Vaasan Lyseon Lukio works together with the Vaasa region’s energy industry and educational institutions, e.g. through company visits, information corners and materials.
Physics teaching aims to utilise Vaasa’s energy cluster through various types of practical examples, where the theoretical part of the teaching can naturally be connected to practical problems.
Vaasan Lyseon Lukio’s international education is extensive and energy education is also integrated into the teaching. Through the camp schools going to China and Japan, there is an opportunity to get to know the international activities of Vaasa’s energy companies. The international education plan of both Vaasan Lyseon Lukio and Vasa Gymnasium is accredited.
All first-year pupils are taken on a familiarisation visit to one of the companies in the Vaasa energy cluster. In this way, pupils get information about the work opportunities of the Vaasa energy cluster and an understanding of the importance of industry for our region. However, the pandemic has prevented visits in recent years.
An annual energy course is offered. In recent years, the course has been very popular; about a third of the school’s pupils choose to complete it. The course provides the basic information on energy technology, which is needed to meaningfully follow energy discussions in the media. The course also serves as a gateway to optional (in-depth) physics courses.
The course includes, among other things:
- The difference between energy and power as well as their different units
- conservation of energy
- different power plants
- familiarisation visits
Novia University of Applied Sciences has a positive attitude towards cooperation. At the time of writing, in the spring of 2023, our pupils are offered one hydrogen technology and one battery technology course arranged by Novia.
Teachers visit an energy cluster company approximately once every three years to gain inspiration and information to share with the pupils.
What is new this academic year is that in the spring of 2023, a theme week will be arranged, for which pupils can choose a theme. As a theme, you can choose technology that has a clear connection to the energy path, and also in other themes, such as economics, you learn about entrepreneurship.
Energy education in higher education institutions
Vaasa University of Applied Sciences
Energetic know-how! Vaasa University of Applied Sciences (VAMK) graduates international and expert engineers, bachelors of business administration (tradenomit), registered nurses, public health nurses and bachelors of Social Services (sosionomit).
Our working life oriented studies support the needs of energy technology companies, and the vibrant Vaasa region ensures excellent employment opportunities. Thanks to them, you can head straight to the heart of the green transition!
VAMK emphasises energy technology and internationality in its education. We work closely with the region’s higher education institutions and the region’s energy technology cluster, which is the most significant in the Nordic countries. A major part of our technology training takes place in the advanced Technobothnia laboratory of the energy campus.
University of Vaasa
At the University of Vaasa, you can study business, technology, administration, and communication. We train responsible and internationally oriented leaders and experts. We graduate innovators and visionaries who think in new ways.
We offer Bachelor’s, Master’s, Master of Science in Engineering, and Doctoral degrees. We also offer several master’s programmes entirely in English. In addition, you can study at our open university or get further education while you’re already in working life. Our online introductory courses let you learn more about different academic subjects and university studies.
In addition to computer simulations, engineering students also get to carry out laboratory exercises at Technobothnia.
We offer the following technological programmes for Finnish-language master’s degrees in engineering:
- Automation and Information Technology graduates can solve complex problems using computer modelling and develop new digital solutions for energy systems using state-of-the-art specialised computing circuits.
- Energy engineering studies focus on applied thermodynamics, internal combustion engine technology, and renewable energy sources.
- Electrical engineering studies cover electricity generation, smart power grids, and power electronics applications.
We offer the following technological programmes for English-language master’s degrees in engineering:
- The Industrial Systems Analytics master’s programme provides content, models, and methods for the design, development, implementation, and operation of complex processes and systems in industry and beyond.
- The multidisciplinary Smart Energy master’s programme provides students with the latest knowledge on the ongoing energy transformation and excellent capabilities to modernise industry and create future sustainable solutions for resilient and smart energy systems.
- The Sustainable and Autonomous Systems master’s programme trains experts in autonomous systems who consider the needs and opportunities of sustainable development in systems development. Employing autonomous systems, we can find new solutions to issues such as energy harvesting, smart cities and communities, positioning systems, artificial intelligence and machine learning concepts, and cyber security systems.
- The Strategic Project Management programme trains experts in Seinäjoki to plan, manage, and implement diverse technology projects.
For more information about studying at the University of Vaasa, please visit our website:
- Studies: https://www.uwasa.fi/en/education
- Bachelor’s programmes: https://www.uwasa.fi/fi/koulutus/kandidaattiohjelmat
- Master’s programmes: Maisteriohjelmat | Vaasan yliopisto (uwasa.fi)
- Doctoral studies: https://www.uwasa.fi/en/education/doctoral-education
- Luma Centre Ostrobotnia: LUMA-keskus Pohjanmaa | Vaasan yliopisto (uwasa.fi)
- Teaching and research laboratory Technobothnia: https://www.technobothnia.fi/
Novia University of Applied Sciences
Finland’s largest Swedish-speaking university of applied sciences
Novia University of Applied Sciences offers high-quality professional university education and continuing education oriented towards working life. Novia has RDI activities, which is essential for the surrounding areas, and in Vaasa the main focus is on sustainable energy technology.
In Vaasa, the Faculty of Technology and Seafaring focuses strongly on the training of engineers, and every second engineer employed by the Vaasa energy cluster has graduated from Novia. Here, the engineering education as well as different orientation options within full-time education is extensive, and includes the following fields:
- Civil and Construction Engineering
- structural design
- construction production
- master builder
- Electrical Engineering and Automation
- electric power
- energy technology
- information technology
- land surveying
- mechanical and production engineering
- mechanical engineering
- operation and maintenance technology
- vehicle and transport technology
- production economics.
All areas of engineering education offered by Novia have connections to energy technology, and since sufficient expertise in a certain field requires specialisation, engineering education is able to offer just such an opportunity for application. Vaasa’s energy cluster is generally very focused on electricity and machinery, which explains why engineers from these fields are clearly hired the most. There is naturally also a need for general experts in energy technology, but there are significantly fewer of them, and in the end, all energy technology solutions include both an electrical and a mechanical part. Construction technology, on the other hand, connects directly to energy technology by focussing on technology related to energy-efficiency and climate-smart buildings, while other engineering trends have their own special connections to energy technology.
As a whole, the education offered by Novia is strongly based on the working life of the region, and the current education is designed in close dialogue with business life and the energy cluster. This is also confirmed by how well engineers who graduate from Novia are employed after graduation (basically full employment).
Energy education working group
The City of Vaasa’s goal is to be the Nordic energy capital: the Vaasa energy training pathway is mentioned as one of the measures in the city’s strategy.
Vaasa will be the Nordic energy capital, where students master future working life skills and energy expertise.
The aim is to create an educational pathway in the Vaasa region, whereby the interests of children and young people in energy-related matters are constantly maintained and their awareness of the importance of the energy sector is increased.
We offer energy-related events and competitions, clubs, visits to energy companies and events related to the energy sector. In secondary vocational education as well as in colleges and universities, versatile training courses related to tasks in the energy sector are provided.
Work group activities
The work group meets at least four times a year, more often if necessary.
At the meetings, we review the activities of the educational institutions of the energy education pathway, plan activities and events, and share experiences.
Work group members:
- Stenbacka Åsa, Vamia, Chairperson
- Aho Mikko, Vamia
- Blomqvist Kristian, Novia
- Houtsonen Sarita, early childhood education
- Isoherranen Ville, VAMK
- Kallio Seppo, Vasa gymnasium
- Klockars Bernt, Vasa Övningsskola
- Kärki Anne, basic education in Finnish
- Pakkala Susanna, Vamia (secretary)
- Perttu Jaakko, Lyseon Lukio
- Rönnqvist-Norrby Jenny, basic education in Swedish
- Vekara Timo, University of Vaasa
Janne Koljonen, LUMA-keskus
Josefin Stolpe, Technobothnia’s coordinator
Virrankoski Ville, Lyseon lukio/teacher network responsibility