Xiaotian Bi

System Developer, Wärtsilä
Master of Science in Technology 2023, Industrial Systems Analytics
Xiaotian Bi

Why University of Vaasa? Why did you come here to study?

I was already working in Finland when I heard about the University of Vaasa from some of my colleagues who had been studying there. I then decided to apply to the master’s programme in Industrial Management, majoring in Industrial Systems Analytics, because I wanted to gain knowledge on data science and analytics. 

What are your favourite memories from your studies and your time at the university?

There are so many good memories. I would like to highlight the unconditional support I received from the professors and teaching staff. I was impressed by the effective guidance I received when I approached them to enhance my knowledge or to ask tips for future career opportunities. 

One great memory in particular is when I was chosen as one of the student representatives from the University of Vaasa to participate in a hackathon in Germany. It was nice to meet other students, and from that trip, I got the idea to continue my studies after my master’s degree. Now, I am a PhD student at the university and work a full-time job. 

What is your job like and what is the best part of it?

I work as a system developer at Wärtsilä’s research & development department in marine business. I am specialised in fuel injection systems and heat treatment. My job involves a lot of coordination with different partners from all over the world, from countries like Switzerland, Germany and Italy. The working culture is very multicultural and we have team members from many different countries. 

The best part of my job is that I can try and learn different things, explore myself and deepen my knowledge with the areas that I’m interested in by learning and doing. I sometimes need to remind myself that to be great in a job, you need many years of experience and patience – give yourself time to develop. 

What are your key learnings from the university? Why would you recommend the university to others?

My key learning from the university is to explore yourself. During my studies, I found out what I am interested in and got a better understanding of myself. That has helped me so much to develop as a professional and I’m grateful for the university for the learning journey.

The University of Vaasa is a high-level academical and teaching institution and it really shows. The strength of the university is encouragement – the staff are friendly, supportive and open-minded. At the university, you really feel valuable in other people’s eyes. The difference is noticeable compared to other education institutes. The staff sends email to students often, giving chances to attend conferences and so on. Equality is really promoted at the university, and there are strict rules of anti-bullying and anti-discrimination at the university. Of course, the beautiful campus is also a huge plus.

What advice would you give to students considering their future careers?

I would like to say to students that know yourself first. It’s really important that you are interested in the field you study and that the aim to find a job is coming from your interest to the field. Your decision should never be pushed by other factors. To find a job in Finland, contacts are important. Try to join career fairs and talk to teachers and professor as they may have a wide network of professionals. Once you get a contact, approaching is the key. Just one email might not get you the dream job. Luckily, the University of Vaasa has many projects and partnerships with companies where you can get involved as a student. That’s the best way to grow your professional network and hopefully land a job of your dreams.