Julia Kallinki, Bachelor of Health Care, Nursing

Tell us about your profession, how you got that profession and factors that impacted your choice of profession?  How has your education impacted your choice of profession and how you got to that profession? Do you feel that your education has been of value to your professional life?

I graduated from Novia UAS in December 2015 as a Registered Nurse (Bachelor of Health Care, Nursing). I am a Finnish speaking person from Seinäjoki, Finland, and the leap I made to begin studying in a Swedish speaking UAS at an English-speaking program was very exciting but also very nerve wrecking at the same time. During the study years my language skills improved enormously altogether with my professional skills, which was kind of the point why I chose Novia in the beginning. My previous studies were trial qualifications (kolmoitutkinto) in a second-degree education, where I combined Finnish general upper secondary education and matriculation examination with a vocational school (Practical Nurse). With that experience in mind, I wanted to challenge myself and continue working hard towards my dreams. 

Julia Kallinki2

After graduating from Novia I immediately got work as a registered nurse from Vaasa Central Hospital, where I had been working as a summer worker and a substitute worker during my studies. I worked in Pooli, which was at the time the hospital's unit for substitute staff. I was assigned to a few longer contracts in cardiac care unit and intensive care unit during 2016-2017, and in September 2017 I got a permanent job in Hoidon Palveluyksikkö 3 (HPY3) as äkkilähtijä in acute care. Since then, my job has been to work at where they need me the most at the time, in other words I change my workplace daily depending on the needs of acute units at the Vaasa Central Hospital. My main circulation area is teho- ja valvontaosasto and päivystyspoliklinikka (intensive care unit and emergency room). I am also responsible for the nursing students that have their clinical practices in HPY3.

The best part of my job is the continuously changing environment. I love acute care nursing, and I feel that in HPY3 I can use my skills the most. One day I can take care of a small child with a Lego in one nostril at the emergency room, and the next day I focus on one critically ill patient in intensive care that is sedated on a ventilator and has vasoactives. The following day I might be the MET nurse (Medical Emergency Team), that is called in for example to every resuscitation that happens inside the hospital, and on the next week I could sit on triage at the emergency room and try to quickly determine what kind of care the patient needs at the moment. In my job as äkkilähtijä I need to be flexible, skilled, adaptable and I need to have resilience to cope with the stress that comes with the job in the acute world. Not everyone can be äkkilähtijä, as it requires motivation to continuous learning, but also because it can be challenging to work in constant change. If needed, my superior can command me to change my work placement for the day immediately, if my skills are required elsewhere, and usually it means that someone is critically ill and needs help NOW. What’s not to love! All the years in HPY3 have showed me that I am where I need to be. Chaos? Bring it on.

During my studies at Novia I heard that many Swedish speaking nurses go and work outside Finland. That started the curiosity towards Sweden and Norway and studying in the English-speaking program already strenghtened the idea of working abroad. Once I had improved my language skills in Swedish by working in bilingual Vaasa Central Hospital and gained some experience as a registered nurse, I decided to apply for Norwegian authorization in 2019. Unfortunately, the Corona virus affected my first working holiday visit in Oslo, Norway, but the few shifts as a sykepleier already sealed that this is something I want to continue once the pandemic is over. It’s always fun to see how nursing is performed elsewhere.

What are your plans for the future?

As might be guessed, I enjoy learning and challenges. I just have to have a project going on or something to improve, it has a positive effect on me. I always knew that I would continue my studies later in life, and this autumn I started my Master's degree studies in Metropolia, Helsinki in Akuuttihoidon kehittäminen ja johtaminen (Sairaanhoitaja YAMK), and will focus on leadership in acute care nursing. Life will show what happens in the future, but I feel that Novia offered me tools on how to plan my own career and how to make it look like me. Novia certainly has opened more doors for me than I ever imagined!