Mini Blog Series #2 Why I Chose Tampere-Isuru's Story

The photo is of students in a classroom together
Photo Credit: Jonne Renvall

Deciding where to study can be overwhelming, especially when going abroad. That is why we created our mini blog series, asking three international students, Isuru, Elia, and Naa Ashiorkor Nortey why they chose Tampere University. All of the students come from different fields and different continents to help you understand why students from all different walks of life had Tampere University as there number one choice!

A photo of Isuru, the blogs subject.


Hi, I am Isuru Pitawala. I came to Tampere from Sri Lanka to pursue my Master’s in Sustainable Architecture. Here is the story of how I chose to come and study at Tampere University.

I was at the end of my final project at university, it had been a hectic 5 years and I was nearly exhausted  from overwork and unfriendly working conditions, with Covid not helping much either. I had plans to pursue a masters since my early days at university and I knew it was now or never to start looking up on potential universities where I could hopefully find working conditions geared towards students and  student mental health. I had a clear vision; I wanted to study in Europe.

Being an architecture student, I had always dreamt of experiencing with my own eyes the buildings I had  countlessly used as precedents for my projects throughout my university days, from Aalto’s Organic  modernist work to Saarinen’s bold designs. I noticed a trend that most precedents I used and the  architectural styles I always gravitated towards were mostly work of Finnish architects, which was the first moment of realization that from all of Europe, I would definitely learn the most about my field in Finland.

At this point, I had started reading up on Finland and its history of architecture and its legendary status as a land of designers, and it only strengthened my desire to study at a Finnish University to expand my  knowledge. It was at this time that I started browsing through potential universities in Finland, and I ended  up shortlisting myself to a top three; Tampere University, Aalto University and Oulu University.

Let me be frank, the first thing that caught my eye and won my heart was the vibrant purple. To this day,  even while walking around university I say to my friends that whoever decided to pick purple as the theme  colour for Tampere University is a genius. The white “T” University logo tantalized my designer instincts  as well, with its curved edges and its overall simplicity. It was a match made in heaven. It’s always the  littlest things that help you make the biggest decisions in life, but the combination of the logo and the  theme colour sparked my interest and made me curious in reading the University website and what it had  to offer, only to find out it was perfect. This was my number one choice in Finland.

I wanted to study in Tampere so bad that even though I wasn’t offered a scholarship (when I had an offer for a 70% scholarship from another university) I still chose to study here, even if it meant paying the full tuition fee to get my study right. I was a man on a mission, and I have finally succeeded. I got offered an opportunity to study Sustainable Architecture, a timely topic that will surely help future generations, and I couldn’t be more excited.

It is safe to say that I am at the happiest point in my life, and it can only get better from here on out.

You can read more about Isuru’s story here


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