Metsä Group arranges events where students from different fields meet and learn about the company values, principles and business operation. On 15 February 2023, the first event was held for students at the University of Eastern Finland. Those invited included students in biology and forest science as well as the university educational personnel.
In the event, Metsä Group career stories were told by biologists and foresters. “Through practice, we have learned that the key to success is teams with people of different backgrounds. Our current business environment with sustainability challenges calls for diverse perspectives. The best results are achieved when know-how and experience represent as big a picture of reality as possible. Team diversity is an important key to success now, and even more so in the future”, says Tomi Salo, Metsä Group’s Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs.
The importance of sustainability in company strategies emphasises multidisciplinarity. Climate and nature solutions are strategic issues that have become even more engrained in the business landscape, regardless of the field.
“Metsä Group’s initiative is very welcome. This event allows students from different sciences and fields to meet and serves the university’s aim to support multidisciplinarity as a broad pillar of society”, says Professor Elina Oksanen, Department of Environmental and Biological Sciences at the University of Eastern Finland.
Biologists work in companies of different fields, depending on the area of emphasis in their studies. However, the sustainability transition and actively developing bioeconomy have not provided a major boost for biologists’ employment in the business world.
“Even the term ‘circular bioeconomy’ indicates a diverse educational background of the key players. A business world that genuinely strives for sustainability will offer many biologists a real dream job”, predicts Salo.
“Metsä Group's event shed light on the company's values and practices. Companies have been quite distant from students' everyday life and perhaps also from their career plans. The personal stories were interesting and inspiring. For many, the corporate world can be a viable option. The most interesting and perhaps a little surprising was the in-depth value-based discussion by company representatives," says Arttu Mäkelä, a third-year forestry student.
In addition to the University of Eastern Finland, Metsä Group will organise student events in other universities this year and the next. Students from different fields will be invited. These events are part of the company’s stakeholder strategy. It aims to build active and constructive dialogue in the integration of sustainability into a changing economy, with a common target of experiencing change management in society.