My Career: From Start to Finnish
Portuguese Hélder Santos loves his researcher job here
Hélder Santos, Portugal. Associate professor
“Finland has a very well-structured system that allows young scientists and foreigners like me to progress relatively fast in their professional careers.”
1. I currently work as an… associate professor at a university’s faculty of pharmacy. I do research on how very tiny particles (nanoparticles) carrying drugs can be used to treat cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, but also, as a head of division and the director of a doctoral programme in drug research, I take part in administrative decisions.
2. The reason I ended up in Finland is… to conduct research for my doctoral studies in chemical engineering in September 2003.
3. What I find surprising about working in Finland is… that Finland has a very well-structured system that allows young scientists and foreigners like me to progress relatively fast in their professional careers, at least in science. There are enough resources to focus only on the essential, which is doing science in my case.
4. If I could change one thing about Finnish working life it would be… when you love your job, it is difficult to say what could be improved, but probably making the working atmosphere/place more family-like, because this would probably make people even happier when they come to work.
5. My favourite thing about Finland is… the nature and lakes in general, but the thing I truly love is sauna. That moment when you can relax and be with your own thoughts is so rewarding; I am definitely “crazy/hullu” for Finnish sauna.