Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland Pekka Haavisto delivered special remarks at the reception in honor of the 70th anniversary of the ASLA-Fulbright Exchanges and the Centennial of Finnish-U.S. Diplomatic Relations.
“Fulbright Finland has been an important element of the Finnish-U.S. relations and plays a very positive role in these relations,” Minister Haavisto said in his remarks. He further highlighted the impressive number of Fulbright Finland Foundation’s alumni: over 5700 Finnish and American scholars, students and professionals have participated in the programs since 1949.
The reception was hosted by U.S. Ambassador Robert F. Pence. In appreciation of the long and fruitful collaboration between the U.S. Embassy Helsinki and the Foundation, CEO Terhi Mölsä presented Ambassador Pence a glass Kuksa, the 70th Anniversary art piece designed and created by 2018-2019 U.S. Fulbright Fellow and glass artist Jonathan Capps.
A Very Finnish Welcome
The special networking reception was part of the orientation week for the newly arrived U.S. Fulbright grantees. During the week grantees learned about Finnish culture and history, economy, society, education and research as well as daily life and Finnish language. The grantees also had a chance to go to sauna and swim in Lake Vitträsk. The Fulbrighters met Fulbright Finland alumni, representatives from Finnish universities, Ministry of Education and Culture, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, as well as Finnish research and cultural institutions through interactive orientation sessions. See the orientation program.
Fulbright Finland Foundation awards grants to over 90 Finnish and American students, academics and professionals annually. This year, approximately 46 Americans participate in the Finnish-American Fulbright program. 28 of these American grantees arrived in Finland in August to study or to conduct research. See the list of U.S. Fulbright grantees in Finland 2019-2020.