Blog post published Aug 1, 2017 8AM Blog: Metso Young Visionaries

Blog: Starting the journey with a ‘wrong’ direction may take you to a better place than you were heading

Just a little less than three years ago I was in a class room of Mouhijärvi Elementary school, but I wasn’t sitting among the pupils. I was in front of the class of twenty teenagers and I was trying to teach them physics as a substitute teacher. Now I am in front of a computer in an office at Hakkila, Metso Valve Technology Centre, as an Item Data Coordinator, Summer Trainee, typing a Metso Young Visionaries Blog post, because my job is to enrich ERP data for the valve production. How did it turn out like that?

The Road to Metso Flow Control isn’t always straight forward

I had always thought that I am going to be either a doctor or a professional athlete (a football or a floorball player) before I went to upper secondary school. When I graduated from there it was clear for me I am going to be neither. Not because it would have been too hard, but because I wasn’t really that interested in playing ball games all day or making cancer diagnoses. For me, a career as a physics and mathematics teacher seemed tempting; long summer holidays, short work days, cheerful young people to co-operate with, physics is an interesting subject, etc. That’s how I ended up, with few more extra twists, in Jyväskylä University five years ago to study physics.

Soon it became clear to me that studying physics and mathematics is probably not my thing. Lots of differential equations, delta-epsilon proofs, coordinate and integral transformations etc. It was very different from what studying physics and mathematics was in upper secondary. Soon I started to look for new opportunities in the academic field. Then I remembered that a friend of mine once said: ‘’All the tough guys study Industrial Engineering and Management!’’ So naturally, I decided to apply, and I even got in. I still finished my Bachelor’s degree of natural science in Jyväskylä, but after that I changed the university. The half year job as a substitute teacher in Mouhijärvi Elementary I mentioned earlier kind of sealed the deal of letting go the plan of becoming a physics teacher.

Things can turn out differently than planned – and that's good!

Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with Jyväskylä and physics, or with Mouhijärvi Elementary; they just weren’t right for me. Changing my major from physics to IEM and the Uni from Jyväskylä University to Tampere University of Technology has probably been one of my top 3 decisions ever. TTY is a wonderful place to study and IEM studies give you a pretty good toolbox with powerful and shiny tools for working life. With those tools, I got my summer job at Metso Flow Control, where I could not have planned myself five years, two years or even one year ago. Soon I will graduate from TTY and become a Master of Science in Technology, but I will always remember my roots as a physics student.

At Metso, we had this welcoming event for the summer workers about a month ago (check blog post:  Blog: Be brave! - Trainee day with tips for the future career, and life in general). There, the VP Metallurgical Operations, Operations & Manufacturing, Pirjo Virtanen shared a valuable lesson: ‘’ You don’t always have to know what you are going to do in life. You don’t even necessarily need to have a plan, because things usually turn out differently than planned.’’ I think my story is a proof of that.

Don’t be afraid of taking risks and trying different fields

My own personal motto, which I copied from my sergeant when doing my military service, is: ‘’Things have the habit to work out just fine’’, because they usually do. That’s why I hope no one stresses too much about their future, because everything will work out, sooner or later. There’s no rush, take your time, there is plenty of it. Most of the things are just a matter of arrangements, and almost everything is negotiable.

I just hope that experimenting with different fields would be made even easier rather than narrowing down the options with tightening the rules with student allowances and making quotas for applicants who already have a place to study.  Because I know lots of fellow students who have also changed their major, some of them have done so several times, and now they all really enjoy what they are doing; just like I do. I think people should be allowed to seek what suits for them, because when they are allowed to do so, they usually find it. And I believe that’s beneficial in many ways. But before good things happen, it always requires the guts to face the change. But there is really nothing to be afraid of, because things have the habit to work out just fine.

Written by Juho Lampimäki, Item Data Coordinator, Summer Trainee, Item Data Management Team

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