Students in field

Paloheimo Fellows class of 2018 announced

January 18, 2018
Paloheimo Fellows Class of 2018

Paloheimo Fellows Class of 2018 from left: Gina Geliche, Dana Pakulski, Dr. Hilary-Joy Virtanen and Monica Freeman.

The Finnish & Nordic Studies Program at Finlandia University is pleased to announce the 2018 class of Paloheimo Fellows. The Paloheimo Fellows Program is a unique, competitive study-abroad program offered to students of any major at Finlandia University in which selected students follow a spring term course in anthropological field research methods combined with individualized research on aspects of Finnish society of interest to the student. Following this spring semester seminar, students engage in a field research period in May in Finland, meeting Finns from many walks of life and learning about aspects of their society through interviews and participant-observation. Prior classes have visited schools, prisons, public saunas, government offices and other venues to gain insights on Finnish culture. This program is directed by Dr. Hilary-Joy Virtanen, assistant professor of Finnish & Nordic Studies and is generously supported by the Paloheimo Foundation of Solvang, California.

Monica Freeman is a junior at Finlandia University, where she is pursuing a degree in Marketing and Graphic Design. She chose Finlandia for the International School of Art & Design and the ability to play volleyball at the collegiate level. While she has not taken any of the Finnish courses, and the only Finnish word she knows by heart is pannukakku, Freeman continues to learn about Finland and Finnish culture from her roommate and events found on and around campus. When she has additional time outside of school, volleyball, and her internship, Monica enjoys devouring books, blaring her music possibly a little too loud, and practicing her painting skills.

Gina Geliche is a junior in the art and design program with a concentration in the Fiber Arts. Her interest in all aspects of Finland led her to Finlandia University to persue a Finnish and Nordic Studies minor. Hailing from the small town of Union Grove, Wisconsin, Geliche intends to explore the fiber arts in Finland in comparison to other regions of the world and knit the whole way through. During her spare time Geliche enjoys reading, knitting, weaving, dancing and being involved in the community.

Dana Pakulski, a native of Indian River, Michigan, is an English major whose goal is to become a librarian. Her interest in the Finnish culture stems from her curiosity about other cultures and traditions. As her family has grown to include people of Finnish descent, her curiosity has grown for this culture and its history. Her interest also include the fiber arts of Finland and the creative knitting patterns that come from the Scandinavian countries and Finnish literature. Going to Finland will be an amazing experience and opportunity to learn all that is possible about the history, culture and art of this wonderful country.

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