Two teachers, Fred Boniphace and Lilian Mkonyi, from the universities of Dar es Salaam and NM-AIST participated in the course Human Technology Interaction in the Summer School of the University of Tampere in August 2018. Here is their travel report, which was originally published in Kristillinen Lääkärilehti (4, 2018, 14-15).
The month of August, 2018 is a memorable month in our life, it was a period which marked our first experience in Finland. We went to Tampere for two weeks to attend Summer School at the University of Tampere in the course of Human Technology Interaction. The trip was funded by the Finnish Christian Medical Society (FCMS) who covered all the expenses associated with the trip. During our stay we met various people with different backgrounds as well as the opportunity to explore some parts of the city. Among the people we met are the members of FCMS with whom we had several meetings for discussing about their projects in Tanzania and other parts of the world as well as presenting our research ideas.
Finnish people are very kind, their hospitality made us feel at home despite being the guests. For us it will be difficult to forget their generosity that transformed our mindset. We had the best accommodation in the Omena Hotel at the city center thus enabling us to navigate easily from one place to another and to the University as well.
Summer School Experience
The Human Technology Interaction (HTI) was a very interesting course, it exposed us to the knowledge of designing technological products that meet user needs. Lessons were delivered in a coordinated fashion, the instructor was well prepared and flexible, and lectures had a lot of recent real world examples to enable easy understanding of the concepts. The class was very interactive as the instructor allowed people to share their experience and ideas on the area of HTI. During classes we had group discussions and assignments that enabled us to practice what was taught and share our thoughts by presenting to colleagues in the class. Interaction among us and our fellow students was nice and we managed to make friends from parts of the world including Finland.
Doing some practices at SimSpace
As a part of Summer School we had the opportunity of attending various social events organized such as Tour bus, Ice breaker, Campus Tour and picnic & games gave us opportunity to explore Finnish culture, taste the foods, networking with new people and get to know about other social events which were taking place there. Indeed it was among the best experiences we have ever come across.
Meeting the FCMS members
We had a chance to meet some members of the FCMS who shared with us information about their projects. We also got a chance to present our research ideas and got some inputs for improvement. During the meeting we paid a visit to the hospital and got an overview of various information systems used in the hospital as well as visiting some of the classes in the health campus. Also we had an opportunity to visit the library in which one of FCMS members reserved us a time slot with the librarian who exposed us to online literature search. The library session was very helpful and equipped us with new literature search techniques.
First and foremost we would like to thank the Almighty God for granting us the chance to get exposed to such a wonderful opportunity which we couldn’t secure by our own will. Sincerely we thanks the Finnish Christian Medical Society who found it important to host and having us in the Summer school.
With these few words we would like to thank everyone who contributed to the success of our trip to Finland, we have nothing to offer in return but may God bless you.
Fred Boniphace & Lilian Mkonyi