There is a great

Finnish Studies Program at the

University of Washington

The program was started in 1991. By now there is a teaching staff of three: Dr. Tom DuBois, Associate Professor, Heljä Nurmela, Visiting Lecturer from Finland, and Andy Nestingen, a graduate student/Teaching Assistant. All of them are among the key planners of FinnFest USA ’99. They are outstanding teachers and great supporters of the Finnish culture.

Undergraduate students may elect to complete a minor in Finnish, or a major in Scandinavian Studies with a Finnish concentration. It is the only Finnish Studies program in the United States in connection with Scandinavian Area Studies. Graduate students may choose Finnish as an area of emphasis in their studies as well. There are exchange opportunities for study in Finland.


  • Study five weeks at the University of Washington
  • Learn about Finnish Folklore, the Kalevala, and its influence on Finnish music
  • Earn ten college credits – yes, ten of them, in only five weeks
  • Enjoy resident tuition rates
  • Attend FinnFest USA ’99 as part of the package – no registration fees
  • Learn about your roots in class and at FinnFest – a unique opportunity!

Finnish related classes during the first Summer Term (June 21 – July 21) are:

Introduction to Folklore (Scand 230, 5 credits). Comprehensive overview of the field of folkloristics, focusing on verbal genres, customs, beliefs, and material culture. The class is taught by Dr. Tom DuBois, one of the foremost Kalevala experts in the world. This Spring Quarter he is a Visiting Professor at Harvard University.

Kalevala’s Influence on Finnish Music (Scand 340, 5 credits). Kalevala gave rise to the Finnish national identity and inspired the great artistic achievements in all fields, including music. It continues to inspire today’s Finnish composers. The Scandinavian Department is fortunate in having a Visiting Finnish Lecturer, Heljä Nurmela, who is also an expert in Finnish Music. She was Information and PR Manager at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki for many years.

Stay through the Autumn Quarter, and Choose from the Following:

  • Elementary Finnish
  • Second-Year Finnish – Heljä Nurmela
  • Topics in Finnish Literature and Culture – Heljä Nurmela
  • Folk Narrative – Tom DuBois
  • Scandinavia in World Affairs – Christine Ingebritsen
  • Immigrant and Ethnic Folklore – Guntis Smidchens
  • The Finno-Ugric Epic and Nationalism – Tom DuBois

Contact the Scandinavian Department for More Information

(206) 543-0645

UW Finnish Studies Homepage


FinnFest USA '99
4122 – 128th Ave. SE, Suite 305, Bellevue, WA 98006
Phone: (425) 401-7100   Fax: (425) 641-9983