Muse, PR/Marketing, Random, Suomi
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Marking the end of my academic life.

end

Today I had my graduation party!

We went to Roaster Helsinki and ate BABY OCTOPUSES HAHAHA.

I really feel especially blessed this year. 

Firstly, I had the chance to contribute to La Belle Couture‘s wedding guidebook and work with Teo Peiru. Peiru’s a highly strategic thinker, a lovely lady who refuses to badmouth even the most underhanded competitor, and a strong woman.

Her business storynope, not a sob story even though she could have easily angled it that way— is nothing short of inspiring. It’s really a huge, huge, huge privilege working with her.

Well the wedding industry + having the privilege to listen to stories from brides first hand is something very close to heart. Sometimes I just feel that I probably accumulated a lot of good karma in the past to have this sort of opportunity.

It’s humbling, very–to have brides tell you many, many of their dreams, hopes and ways of thinking. It builds a lot of empathy and teaches one not to judge. I think before my master’s thesis and the wedding book I used to be quite judge-y, and now I learnt to respect “what is”.

I could have done bridal forever–however in Finland the bridal market is super small and saturated! I shared all my ideas and know-how with Miki + gang though, so I hope they do the pre-wedding niche well. =) They are really a talented team.

wanwei11.jpg

Thank you brides and SG wedding practitioners!! It was such a fun bridal project!

Next, I had the huge privilege of doing the official Suomi100 project, which is currently 80% done. It’s really a happy thing to be invited to all the official Suomi100 events. Currently, we just have Mikko Hypponen’s interview left and Dr. Ed’s transcription to do! And to wait for other folks to send in their complete response whenever they are ready.

And yes, one other thing is that I graduated from Aalto University, School of Business!

I don’t think I’d involve myself in academia anymore, because as Henry Kissinger quips,”academic politics is vicious as the stakes are so low”. LOL. I am also bothered with the increasing lack of academic neutrality because funding cuts in Finland seems to imply that academia becomes more and more about “following the money”. And of course there are always challenges with the hawthorne effect.

That aside and FINALLY behind me, I have to point out that it is a huge blessing to be able to start work just 3 days after graduation😮 hehehe. And my contract’s also permanent. *_*

I’m of course grateful to my business mentors Raymond Ng, Dr. Sun and D’Niel. Haha I’m grateful for all the random knowledge and discussions we have on human nature, life and business.

The result is, for instance, smart and quirky quotes like this:

HAHAHAHA. I really liked this quote + the design! It feels so Raymond-ish.

Actually these are the main highlights of my life this year. Of course there are tinier events here and there, and I’m grateful to every help I’d received and every friend I’d made in the process.

Moving forward here are some things I want to highlight, before the end of 2016:

  1. I hope qiuqiu gets out of her lawsuit fine.
  2. Support the Design Finland 100 initiative! I wish with all my heart that more Singaporeans can learn design, so that we can design better systems and work more productively and lazy-ly.

Hard work is really a sign of a defective system.

On a sidenote, join our DF100 contest here:

3. As a PR practitioner, I hope to get more visibility for some of the most service-orientated Singaporeans politicians, who are rather low-profile.

I’d also be working on this blog to deepen its personal branding niche. Actually, this personal branding niche is the result of a random idea given by Professor Kirsti Lindberg-Repo when we had coffee together.

She’s a really cool and smart professor with Aalto Universty, School of Arts, and at Singaporea Management University–you blessed SMU folks!!! You folks can consider totally outbidding each other to take her branding courses next year–she’s really great at teaching and helping students remember stuffs effortlessly! Prof Kirsti is also the founder of Brand Audit Group and Design Finland 100 is her brainchild.

Prof Kirsti originally suggested “personal digital advisor” and that was like an eureka moment for me. I’d been searching for a niche for The Hieno! since two years back and I’d found it now. I am comfortable doing personal branding for life because I’d been doing it since I was 18–I love helping people find their niche and I can do it very well! It’s just that this skillset of mine isn’t formalized, and I was only introduced to this “personal branding” term when I was 26.

And so, now The Hieno! has a personal branding niche!

Also, I’m looking forward to meeting everyone in Singapore. I’d be back in January to emcee a friend’s wedding.🙂

So today, I’d mentally marked a formal end to my academic life. And I’m very happy about it.🙂

Finally graduated today with a Masters in Corporate Communications! So happy! 💋🎉😄🍷 — Heartfelt thanks to my Professors in the PR department. Thank you for showing me human nature as is. Sincere thanks also to the student union @ayy_fi , my accounting Professor Jari, my Finnish lawyer friends and trainers at @aaltomediafactory for teaching practical stuffs outside my major. 🙃🙃🙃 — My biggest wish for Aalto University is to insist on academic neutrality. It is a huge pity that academic research in Finland is geared increasingly to "follow the (private) money" due to funding cuts. It is also absurd when professors with solid reputations in academia are threatened by narcissistic practitioners to issue corrections to their original statements in public, on @helsinginsanomat and Twitter or risk being sued for defamation. Well, thankfully nobody treats fakes seriously, no matter how hard they try~ 😅 — It's been a huge privilege to do a master's thesis with Singaporean brides and subsequently be able to contribute to the first ever wedding guidebook with the top SG wedding boutique @labellecouture! This industry book is out soon and will bless many #sgbrides– so please stay tuned! ✨👌🍷 ~~ I'm happy to have graduated on the same day with @merjahalme too, she's the second friend I made at Aalto 👏👏🎀 #onnea to us and the best is yet to be! I'm also personally really looking forward to our The Hieno! @suomi100 book next year! — @suomi100espoo @suomi100uusimaa 😘 #gratitude #graduation #mygraduation #aaltouniversity #helsinginsanomat #yhdessä #finnishuniversities #ayy #finnisheducation #suomi100 #sgweddings #helsinginsomat #aaltouniversity #labellecouture #karmabites #onnea #🎉

A photo posted by ww (@thewanwei) on

I owned everything that happened in the 2+ years: happy, sad, ups, downs, challenges, successes, failures. I’m glad I took unfamiliar classes purely out of curiosity such as Nordic economics, economic history, video classes at Aalto Media factory, some crazy coding classes, etc.

I’m happy and thankful that my Masters at Aalto University in PR gave me a really deep theoretical and practical perspective of human nature. I felt really privileged to be able to witness some real action with the top minds in PR, and to realise the various legal/ accounting aspects to life.

And I realised that one can consider always to be humble, to document EVERYTHING in black and white–because we don’t know what we don’t know. In other words, do due diligence and do not look up to people because they seem “shiny”.

I’m probably meant to do public relations for life HAHA.

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