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FACTFILE: More students in China study Finnish
Is Finnish a difficult language for Chinese to learn? The first 24 Chinese students majoring in the Finnish language have graduated at Beijing University.
The BA programme in Finnish began at the Beijing Foreign Studies University in the autumn of 2002. Chosen for the programme were 24 Chinese students.
The Chinese and Finnish ministries of education are giving support to the Finnish language programme, whose students are being set up to be key figures in strengthening cultural ties between Finland and China.
The Chinese students of Finnish have written theses on topics such as the works of Minna Canth as well as The Unknown Soldier by Väinö Linna, and the comparison of Finnish and Chinese mythology.
Graduates of the course have found work well. A few of them have succeeded in being posted to the Chinese Foreign Ministry. Some of those on the course have already applied to study at Finnish universities.
Helsingin Sanomat / First published in print 1.9.2006