Haaga-Helia (www.haaga-helia.fi/en) is the second biggest university of applied sciences in Finland. Through education, research and development, Haaga-Helia prepares professionals in business and services offering students a versatile choice of studies, opportunities for specialization, high quality education in Finnish and English and wide business networks. The 10 000 students and 600 employees at Haaga-Helia base their activities on highly advanced national and international expertise.
Haaga-Helia’s profile and core competences are in the areas of business development, entrepreneurship, sales and service innovations, digital and creative solutions, and pedagogy.
Offered fields of education are business management, hotel, restaurant and tourism management, information and communication technology (ICT), journalism, modern languages and management assistant training, sports management and VET teacher education for undergraduate programmes. Haaga-Helia offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees as well as a wide offering of complementary training, including the Vocational Teacher Programme (60 credits) and training tailored for companies’ needs.
Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences has also educated hospitality experts for almost 50 years, being the first hospitality school in Finland. The hotel-, restaurant and tourism education unit has approximately 1000 students studying hospitality-, culinary-, and tourism management and almost 250 students from bachelor and master programmes graduate annually. The hotel-, restaurant-, and tourism education unit is a member of EuroCHRIE, ICHRIE, American Hotel and Lodging Association, Paul Bocuse Worldwide Alliance and Hotel Schools of Distinction. Haaga-Helia has some 200 international partner institutions throughout the world and each year hosts around 350 exchange students who study in Haaga-Helia.
The Finnish Education Evaluation Council (FINEEC) has audited Haaga-Helia’s quality assurance system in April 2010 and Haaga-Helia has passed the auditing acceptably. NB! FINEEC’s report 2010 has been published only in Finnish.
According to the national university political definitions of policy Haaga-Helia was again audited at the beginning of the year 2017. The Audit was organised by The Finnish Education Evaluation Centre FINEEC (former FINHEEC) and the audit team was international. Haaga-Helia passed the audit and received the quality label for six years. The audit report is available in English as well as the audit manual for the second round.
Haaga-Helia has been accepted in February 2011 as a member of AACSB (the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business). Our objective is to develop the quality system and the quality so that we will achieve the accreditation of AACSB. The accreditation is important because of the access to partners and cooperation quarters which will ensure the impartiality essential to quality central to Haaga-Helia.
AACSB was established in the United States 1916, and it has more than 500 members in more than 30 countries. The headquarters of the association is in Tampa, Florida. Haaga-Helia was accepted in May 2013 as the member of EFMD (the European Foundation for Management Development). The objective is to get the EQUIS accreditation (EFMD Quality Improvement System) for the business education of Haaga-Helia.
The EFMD was established in 1972 and has concentrated on the accreditation of European universities in earlier times but has extended its operation especially to America and Asia. There are more than 800 members in EFMD (12 members from Finland of which 8 are higher education institutions, a situation in January 2018, the real-time membership register can be seen on the pages of EFMD).
In January 2021 Haaga-Helia’s Hospitality, Tourism and Experience Management Degree Programme was awarded with the first THE-ICE (International Centre of Excellence – Tourism & Hospitality Education) accreditation in Finland. THE-ICE is a global organisation, established in
2004 to promote excellence in tourism, hospitality, events and culinary arts education.
Haaga-Helia has a close relationship with the industry
Haaga Hospitality Campus dates back to 1969 when School of Hotel and Restaurant Management was established in Helsinki. It was the first of its kind in Finland and the initiative came from Hospitality Industry. The School has always been privately owned and works in close cooperation with its Industry partners and other stakeholders. When Universities of Applied Sciences were piloted in Finland 1991, Haaga was first School given this status. The system became permanent in 1993 and again Haaga was the first school given this status and permission to operate as University of Applied Sciences. First UAS Bachelors graduated from Haaga in February 1994. Today Haaga Hospitality Campus as part of Haaga- Helia UAS is the largest higher education provider on Hospitality Industry, offering Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. It is recognized worldwide and member of several international alliances such as I-CHRIE, Hotel Schools of Distinction (HSD) and Paul Bocuse Worldwide Alliance. We are involved in several domestic, European and international projects with our 200 university partners globally. We are particularly strong in foresight thinking, future oriented projects as well as immersive experiences and design thinking. Haaga-Helia has been active in export of education and our latest project was to establish a new design-oriented university level School of Hospitality to Tallinn, Estonia. In our home Institution, we have revised our curriculums in sequence of 5-7 years and are currently preparing to restructure our education model which is perfectly aligned with proposed project.
International train-the-trainer experience in 18 countries
Haaga-Helia UAS has wide experience in international train-the-trainer and international export of education activities. During the last 6 years Haaga-Helia has provided teacher training in adult/vocational level in 18 countries (France, Malta, Estonia, China, Malesia, Indonesia, India,
Nepal, Mexico, Colombia, Uruguay, Peru, Chile, South Africa, Saudi-Arabia, Oman, Tunisia, Tanzania). Haaga-Helia ́s approach is a futureoriented understanding of professional pedagogy and the ability to construct working-life relevant education. Everything is based on earnercentred ideology.
Ulysseus – the European University and Haaga-Helia’s AI Hub
Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences is part of Ulysseus – the European University, alongside with University of Cote d’Azur (France), University of Genoa (Italy), Management Center Innsbruck (Austria), Technical University of Kosice (Slovakia) and the coordinator of the consortium University of Seville (Spain).
As part of its actions, Ulysseus is building an innovation ecosystem, constituting of six Innovation Hubs to solve Research and Development challenges in multidisciplinary. Haaga-Helia is responsible for the Artificial Intelligence (AI) Hub.
EDIH – European Digital Innovation Hub / FAIR
As part of the European Commission’s Digital Europe Programme, European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIHs) act as important support systems for businesses and SMEs to respond to the digital challenges they face. Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences is part of a Finnish consortium called FAIR, applying to be one of the EDIHs in Europe. FAIR consortium is based on previous Finnish Center for Artificial Intelligence (FCAI), and it withholds significant other Finnish organisations, such as Aalto University, University of Helsinki, University of Oulu and VTT Technical Research Center of Finland.
Haaga-Helia uses AI in curriculum development – Adopting artificial intelligence (AI) in forecasting competence needs
One of the biggest challenges in the design of a work-related curriculum is to make sure that the curriculum is up to date. This represents a challenging task and is difficult to implement in a rapidly changing world, where the competence requirements of companies are evolving quickly, and entire new professions emerge at an increasing speed. Since the fall of 2019 Haaga-Helia has been applying cognitive AI, big data and natural language processing to build real-time understanding of skills, competencies, knowledge and abilities that workplaces seek. This knowledge is visualized as maps that enable us to: 1) understand what skills are needed now and in near future, 2) guide up-to-date curriculum development, 3) advice students on their course selection and 4) gain an understanding to improve the competitive offering of Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences.
Vast experience in Design Thinking training
Haaga-Helia has vast experience in design thinking training. After being one of the first universities in Scandinavia to start providing formal training on Design Thinking, Haaga-Helia has accumulated extensive understanding and didactical expertise on the topic. Haaga-Helia has trained Design Thinking to approximately 1000 managers and industry professionals.
Finally, LAB8 – Service Experience Laboratory, combines creativity, service companies and learning by development. “We can help you make your business experiential in a manner that best serves your customers. Quick, fun and agile!”
LAB8 consists of eight different sub-areas
As the name suggests, LAB8 consists of eight parts, whose focus is on service and experience design. We conduct trend research, provide evento production services and apply the latest technology. We have particular expertise in the service business as well as phenomena in the tourism, restaurant and hospitality industries.