Kainuu Vocational College


Kainuu Vocational College (KAO) is a vocational upper secondary institution that offers vocational upper secondary education in six different fields of vocational education and training. Education is organized in Kajaani, Kuhmo, Sotkamo, Suomussalmi and Vantaa. KAO offers education for both youth and adults.

From the beginning of the school year 2015-16 KAO has carried out entrepreneurial learning pedagogics in YritysAmis. Behind this, there is a project called Learning in Amisyritys, which is funded by the European Social Fund. The project emphasizes entrepreneurial attitude and co-operative skills. Thanks to this project, the learning environment has been renewed by making it more entrepreneurial and less traditional. Together with the renewal, there has been an aim to create technically functional space and equipment solutions.


Kainuu vocational college has a long experience in entrepreneurship education. The school started cooperating with businesses and the local community already in the middle of the 1990’s. JA's mini-companies have been implemented more recently. 

From the beginning of the school year 2015-2016, Business, Culture and Natural Resources Studies have been called YritysAmis in KAO. YritysAmis executes the new curriculum with entrepreneurial learning pedagogics. Students learn in different learning projects, such as the mini-companies. These environments in YritysAmis are the café, the office, the decorative workshop, the media workshop, the newsroom and the garden center. Customers for these come from both inside and outside KAO. 

It has been the aim in KAO to effectively execute the new competence-based learning. Students have personalized study plans. Operating in own businesses and gaining knowledge with work oriented studying are encouraged alternatives. 

Over the past few years there have been several JA-businesses in the competence area. JA-camps arranged for all students are included in this activity. Through these, many students get the inspiration to found their own JA student company. JA student companies have been founded in all fields, but mostly in Culture. After the JA Company Program, many businesses have joined in their own co-operatives as entrepreneurs. 

"YritysAmis is not a competing company in the market, and we do not actually educate entrepreneurs. The focus is on pedagogy, a new way to organize the qualification criteria in accordance with teaching. The model is being used to develop work readiness. This model does not highlight the differences between background, skills or gender, but it gives everyone an opportunity to progress in their studies as equals, according to their own readiness and goals" - said Maarit Tartia-Kallio, Director of Education 

SCHOOL WEBSITE: http://www.kao.fi 

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