The new Lahti general upper secondary school Gaudia is one of the largest upper secondary schools in Finland, with over 1,300 students and almost 100 staff members. Gaudia was formed as two upper secondary schools merged into one. Operations in the renewed premises began during the autumn semester of 2022. Gaudia’s premises also house the Vellamo Community College and Tiirismaa comprehensive school.
Gaudia invested in quality and community in the selection of furniture
Quality in line with the high expectations
“It was clear to us from the beginning that we wanted to invest in high-quality furniture that would last well the demanding everyday life and use at an upper secondary school,” says the principal of Gaudia Jyrki Rosti.
In the project, all the school facilities were furnished, from classrooms to canteens, and laboratories to the auditorium and the staff’s working and break areas. Already after a few months use of the facilities, there has been a lot of positive feedback.
“The quality of ISKU’s furniture is in line with our high expectations. Additionally, I would like to emphasize that the quality of the service has been excellent. Our contact person has been really active and answers our questions quickly. ISKU has a solution-oriented approach and a short response time. It’s also great that as a Finnish company ISKU is really close; the furniture was manufactured at the ISKU factory only 3.5 kilometers away from us!” Jyrki Rosti tells.
The innovative cooperation has continued even after the school started, when more seats were requested in one of the school’s largest lobby areas.
“We pitched ISKU the idea of furnishing the lobby area and quickly received four visual proposals. We gave the first-year students a chance to choose the best out of the four plans. This reflects well ISKU’s ability to adapt to the customer’s everyday life. Now we are eagerly waiting for the furniture to arrive,” Jyrki Rosti describes.
Community and togetherness are encouraged
It is easy for students to get to know each other in the common spaces. Gaudia also has a wellness group with a couple of teachers and approx. 10 students which calls together students through different themes on a regular basis. The school arranges e.g., board game events and manga drawing. This way, students who like the same things, can easily meet each other in large spaces!
“We merged two upper secondary schools, which set its own requirements especially for common facilities. The best thing about the facilities has been the immediacy and the positive interaction they offer between students and staff. The facilities are versatile and adapt with our everyday. Spaces also look academic, which is what we wanted from the beginning. Even though the crowd is large, there is still room for everyone! We have also received praise from both students and staff members for investing in comfort and well-being, and we have e.g., pool tables and we are also building a yoga towel room,” says Jyrki Rosti.
The color scheme of the premises is harmonious and light. Gaudia is one of the six upper secondary schools for arts in Finland, and the color scheme was to have mainly light walls with more colours in some floors, so that the students have enough space to create art on the wall surfaces as well. Light and harmonious tones were also desired for the furniture to create spaces that look academic and timeless.