MORE ABOUT ME

Jay front of school (2).jpg

PROFESSIONAL LIFE

I have been the guidance counselor at a public middle school in Espoo for almost 10 years now, and have been in some form of education my entire career. I especially enjoy working with smaller groups of students, coordinating our mentors and collaborating with the school management group. Working with the school community well-being group keeps me aware of the many challenges young people face.

MY VALUES

Needless to say, education is important to me. I have been a life-long learner: a Bachelor's degree in psychology, theological training in the U.S. Lutheran church, 1 year of full-time Finnish language studies, vocational pedagogical studies and, this year at age of 50, the recipient of a Master degree in education.  Learning never ends!

Working with young people for almost three decades has kept me connected to that crucial demographic. Our 15 and 20-year-old children also help in that department, and our four-legged baby gives us daily excuses to enjoy the great outdoors. Keeping active and healthy is a priority for me, and has brought me appreciation for Espoo's excellent exercise facilities and sports organizations.  I have volunteered my time as a basketball coach, a member of the Espoo International School Board and, recently, as a Lions Club member.

CAMPAIGN FOCUS

Education. Environment. Entrepreneurship.

Our education system in Finland is the envy of much of the world, but there are growing struggles. Larger class sizes are straining the quality of teaching in some schools, not to mention making student well-being all but impossible to support. Study places in public schools for students that want to study in English are scarce.

With the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals fast approaching, Finland - like much of the world - is behind schedule. Espoo has been a positive example in terms of caring for the environment, but can do even more to help make achieving the goals a reality.

Entrepreneurs are a crucial component of Finland’s economic future, and must be supported. This can take the form of additional financial support, as well as structured guidance for those new to operating their own business.