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What to do after vocational education?

Vocational education and training prepares you for the transition into the working life, further studies at a university or a university of applied sciences, or deepening your professional skills in further vocational and specialist vocational qualifications.
Photo: Maija Astikainen

Interested in entering the working life?

Browse open positions on the Job Market Finland website. It's  also a good idea to follow potential employers and interesting companies on social media and actively contact employers. During your studies, Stadin AO work coaches, teachers and guidance counsellors will help you with job seeking. 

If you do not have a job when you graduate from vocational education and training, you should register as an unemployed jobseeker. You can do this on the TE Services website (page in Finnish) . As an unemployed jobseeker, you can boost your jobhunting, at Stadin AO workshops (page in Finnish) .

Interested in studying at a university or a university of applied sciences?  

You can apply for higher education in the national joint application system organised in the spring and autumn in the Study Info service . Higher education institutions may also organise additional applications if they have vacancies.   

In most higher education institutions, you can also apply for a degree programme through an open university route. Check the application instructions and admission criteria for open university route at the websites of specific universities of universities of applied sciences.  

Want to add to your professional skills?  

Further vocational qualification gives you an opportunity to obtain and increase your professional competence. Further vocational students are usually required to have either a vocational upper secondary qualification or basic skills acquired in the working life. 

A specialist vocational qualification is suitable for professionals who already have an extensive career and want to update and strengthen their competence. A specialist vocational qualification demonstrates that its holder masters the most demanding work tasks in the sector. 

As a rule, both further vocational and specialist vocational qualifications are completed in apprenticeship training. Additional information on both further vocational and specialist vocational qualifications is available on the Stadin AO website .

Where to find help if you did not get a job or study place after vocational education and training?  

The staff of Ohjaamo Helsinki will provide you with guidance on transitioning to postgraduate studies or the working life even after graduation. Ohjaamo is a multidisciplinary guidance and counselling service for 15–29-year-olds available to young people without an appointment. Ohjaamo staff can also give you information on searching for an apartment, dealing with the authorities, matters related to leisure and recreation and financial matters. Ohjaamo is an important partner of Stadin AO.