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Olli, a Security Management student: “Security Management allows me to apply my strengths”

Student interview with Olli Leikas, a student in the Safety, Security and Risk Management degree programme.

It is not always simple or straightforward to find a field that feels like one’s own. Olli Leikas, who studies in an English-language programme at Laurea, found his calling in security management after trying out several other fields:

-    In the upper secondary school, my dream profession was that of a basketball player, but it didn’t happen, Leikas says.
-    After graduating from upper secondary school, I worked for a while before starting my entrepreneurship studies in Jyväskylä. In a couple of years, however, I realised it was not the right field for me.

Next, Olli worked as a security guard and found that the safety and security sector was a good match for this personality. This experiment paid off: after first applying for the Finnish-language Security Management programme, Olli also found out about an additional application period for the English-language Safety, Security and Risk Management programme, applied, and was admitted.

Finding one’s own field through work

Having studied for 18 months, Olli Leikas has found that his work experience in the security sector has proven useful in his studies. Working as a security guard was also a convenient low-threshold way to find out if there was a suitable career path in the sector for him.

-    Of course, working as a security guard provides only one perspective to security management, Olli says.
-    A great aspect of studying at Laurea is that I have had the opportunity to see the full spectrum of tasks included under the umbrella of security management.

For Olli, the most interesting subjects in the studies include continuity planning, crisis management and protecting the infrastructure critical for society. He also finds information security interesting:

-    I had a summer job in the information security unit of a bank, which was exactly in the sector I’m studying, he says.

For Olli, the highlight of his studies so far was the summer school of the European Cooperation Network for Risk, Safety & Security Studies (CONRIS), which he attended with a fellow student in Hamburg, Germany, last summer. The week-long intensive period consisted of learning crisis management through simulation.

Reliability and calmness are assets

During his studies, Olli Leikas has found that personal traits such as calmness are valued in security management. One must have the ability to assess situations in a calm and comprehensive manner and make reasoned decisions. One should also posses analytical reasoning skills in order to understand the impacts of different choices.

-    Naturally, everything in this sector is based on trust. Reliability, calmness and an analytical approach are characteristics that I have identified in myself and that I also want to apply when working, Olli says.
-    This is also why security management feels like the right career path for me.

The degree programmes are open for application during 8th - 22nd January 2020. Read more about The Degree Programme in Safety, Security and Risk Management and apply now!