Skip to main content

A big thank you from Eija Alhojärvi

CEO of Skills Finland Eija Alhojärvi retires after a long and successful career.

My 18-year stint at Skills Finland is now coming to an end. During these years, we organised the successful WorldSkills Helsinki 2005 event, actively participated in the establishment of the WorldSkills Europe organisation and the EuroSkills competition, got on board with Abilympics activities and developed Taitaja into a truly high-level event for vocational education. There have also been countless memorable moments and encounters over the years.

The undoubtable strength of Finnish vocational skills competitions are their close connection with vocational education and its development. The aim is not only to increase the attractiveness of vocational education, but also to improve its quality. Another strength is our collaborative approach. Skills Finland is a genuine forum for cooperation for all those who are interested in developing vocational education and improving their skills.

During the coronavirus pandemic, Skills Finland has also shown its resilience. As the operating environment changes, our activities can be flexibly modified so that the shared objectives can be achieved even in different circumstances. I am very proud that, unlike many other countries, we have not had to cancel this year’s Taitaja semifinals. Of course, the development and flexible implementation of new operating methods also demonstrates the excellent professional skills and open-mindedness of the network members.

I hope that Skills Finland will continue to boldly take on new challenges, create new things and keep an open perspective on the huge range of opportunities that our work offers. I also hope that our work will continue to be characterised by mutual encouragement, learning from one another, and a joyful, positive attitude. This helps to keep our activities meaningful, effective and rewarding. In addition, I hope that Skills Finland will continue to warmly welcome new kinds of organisations and actors that bring new ideas and requests. Challenging oneself is a prerequisite for development and learning.

I would like to extend my warmest thanks to all of you with whom I have had the pleasure of working during my years at Skills Finland. It is largely because of you that I have always found my work so meaningful and inspiring. It has been easy to experience the joy of satisfying work. Thank you, all of you, for giving that to me.

Eija Alhojärvi


The video below contains some memorable moments from Eija’s career at Skills Finland.