From trainee to employee

Practical training is an important part of studies and has a special part in education. Training period gives an excellent opportunity to get familiar with working life during the studies.  It also gives you a better chance to find employment opportunities that match your field of studies after graduation.

In this blog post I will tell my own experiences from the practical training. I will make several points which are good to know before, during, and after the training. In this way you can also improve your chances of getting hired when the training period ends.

Before the practical training

Preparing for the practical training should be done as early as in the beginning of your studies. The first couple of years of your studies pass by fast, and before you know it is time for the practical training. Start your studies with motivation, excitement and patience. Keep that up during your whole studies and you can gain the needed knowledge even before the training period begins. In this way you stand out from the other applicants.

In my experience, the right attitude and knowledge are the most appreciated things that the employers appreciate in the applicants.

Active searching for practical training employer

When you are searching for a training employer you should consider few things. First, employers will begin the employment process for the next summer often during the previous autumn. For this reason, it is advisable to send the application forms early (4-6 months prior to the scheduled training). Second, I personally recommend that you are active and open-minded throughout the application process. For example, you can contact the employer via email or phone to get the real-time information about the status of your application form.  At the same time, you give motivated image of yourself to the employer.

In my studies I have majored in cyber security, so when I searched for a practical training employer my biggest aspiration was to find an employer that focuses on cyber security. JYVSECTEC has been strongly present at both JAMK University of Applied Sciences and in my studies, so it was natural for me to apply to JYVSECTEC for practical training. My informal application form reached the JYVSECTEC’s training director, Chief Technology Officer Marko Vatanen, and after that the whole arrangement of practical training went smoothly.

From the training contract to the contract of employment

Practical training has been a success when all the participants, the school, the student, and the employer have reached their goals which were set for the training period. When you present your best capabilities during the training you have a good chance to get employed at your practical training place. You can never underestimate the power of high motivation, positive attitude, or professional ability.

My personal target for the training period was to bring all what I have learned during my studies for my employer’s use and develop both my occupational knowledge and project working skills. During the practical training I got a lot of experience. For example, tool experimentation, penetration testing and application development. After training, I was employed by JYVSECTEC.

Joni Ahonen
Technical Specialist at JYVSECTEC
Institute of Information Technology at JAMK University of Applied Sciences