I was born and raised in Kuortane, Southern Osthrobothnia, where I also completed my matriculation examination in 2003. I spent one academic year at the Alkio College in Korpilahti (nowadays part of Jyväskylä) where I took Open University courses on biology. I entered the University of Jyväskylä in 2004 to study biology, majoring in evolutionary genetics. I spent the 2008 spring semester as an exchange student at the University of Århus in Denmark and graduated as an MSc from the University of Jyväskylä in 2009. I began my PhD at the University of Turku in 2010 and completed my doctoral degree in spring 2016. I spent the academic year 2017-2018 at the Institute of Estonian and General Linguistics, University of Tartu, Estonia, after which I returned to Turku.
In my spare time I do Irish dancing. It is challenging and fun. I also go running. It is less challenging and less fun, but somehow I still enjoy it. I also like to watch sports, and I was a volunteer during the 2005 athletics World Championships in Helsinki in the ECOmass environment program, assisting athletes in sorting their waste. My usual summer holiday destination is Kuortane, where like to I collect berries.