Originally from Marrakesh, Morocco, Ali had planned to head to Canada for his studies. After hearing about Centria’s english-language programs, he changed his mind and his journey to Kokkola started.
Centria organized a recruitment event in Morocco, where Ali heard for the first time about the university’s english-language degrees. He tells me that in Morocco, degrees are only taught in Arabic or French. Ali believes getting an English-taught degree is very important, as in his opinion, it will offer more versatile opportunities for employment after studies.
Ali says he has considered the possibility of staying permanently in Kokkola, if a job suited for his degree was available after graduation. On the other hand, he notes that if for some reason there aren’t any, Centria’s international degree offers diverse opportunities for employment even outside of Finland. Ali started his studies at Centria in August of 2021.
Kokkola has people from many different cultures
Ali tells me he’s made a lot of new friends in Kokkola. He noticed very quickly that Kokkola is a quite multicultural environment, as there are residents from many different countries and cultures. In his opinion, this is a big positive for the city and he finds it interesting getting to know people from different backgrounds. When asked about being homesick, Ali says it hasn’t had a chance to develop. It’s been quite easy to meet new people here, and thanks to today’s technology, staying in contact with loved ones back home is not a problem.
Differing ways of living
According to Ali, Moroccoans talk a lot and with anyone. They even have a specific name for strangers, which may catch Finns off guard, – ‘Simo’. While a common male first name in Finland, in Morocco it’s a general way of calling any man the speaker doesn’t know. ‘Simo’ comes from the words ‘Sir’ and ‘Mohammed’. In Ali’s words, Moroccoans are generally talkative people, who don’t take life or themselves too seriously.