Have you met Markus Vuorensola?

Get to know a little bit more about the staff at UAI.

15 June 2020

UAlberta International has a friendly team of professionals that focus on various areas of work that support internationalization at UAlberta. Let's spend a few minutes getting to know Markus Vuorensola, Risk Management and Scholarship Coordinator!
What different languages do you speak?
Mitä kuuluu? (that's Finnish for how's it going!) My family is Finnish and it was my first language, and it's a bit rusty as I only get to use it when I go back to visit family in Finland. Luckily there are now some Finnish Netflix shows streaming in Canada (e.g. Bordertown) now so I can get a bit more exposure. I grew up in French immersion and took German as a minor at the University of Alberta, but my speaking skills in both languages need some work.
What do you like most about your work at UAlberta?
Working with the students and faculty at the University. I had a great experience here as an undergraduate (minus the chance to go abroad, unfortunately), so it's great to give back and help where I can. Working with a student body with so many different experiences and backgrounds has been great, and I love working with a unit as support as UAI.
What led you to this career?
I started out in Education Abroad as an administrative assistant in 2011 (I used to work at the front desk at our old office in HUB). Previous to that I worked in landscaping and at a greenhouse, so it was a bit of a change in direction to say the least. I had always wanted to work at the university in a support role and was ecstatic to get the chance. I then moved on to become the Scholarship Assistant, and then in 2015 became the Risk Management and Scholarship Coordinator.
What's something that has surprised you about your chosen career path?
The breadth of knowledge and different tasks I've had to learn to get where I am today. When I started in 2011 I never thought I'd eventually be working on Risk Management (let alone during a pandemic like COVID-19), supervising my own staff member or having to help develop a study abroad database, but the amount I've learned from these new challenges has been priceless.