Archive for the ‘International Affairs’ Category

AYY <3 Tsinghua

perjantai, elokuu 25th, 2017

Where Finnish people pride themselves in high standard of education, so do the Chinese. Beijing, a bustling city of 20 million people is the third largest in the world, but in technological education their Tsinghua University is ranked number one, unrivaled even by the famous MIT. And just as in any educational facility, they have a student union to improve the lives of their nearly 40 thousand students.

The cooperation between Tsinghua University’s Student Union SUTU with Finnish students started by chance in 2004, when two students and active members of their respective student unions met at a European Conference and decided to bring their worlds closer together. Since then the original party to cooperate with SUTU, the Student Union of the Helsinki University of Technology (TKY) has ceased to exist and merged with other student unions into AYY, Aalto-university Student Union. Despite this, both parties have worked ceaselessly to strengthen the bonds between them. A SUTU delegate visits Finland every year, and in return two of AYY’s boards travel to China every other year.

This year the visit of Chinese students fell upon mid-August. Knowing the Finnish summer AYY’s board members had been worried about the activities they had organised all summer, scared they might be foiled by fickle storms. As Monday came and the guests arrived, they were greeted by the oh so familiar summer drizzle. But they weren’t unprepared, and soon the bleak grey skies were obscured by umbrellas, one more colourful than the other.

First day in rainy Espoo.

The Chinese students’ flight had been long, so Monday’s programme was kept brief: a short introduction of both student unions’ functions, as well as a few ice breakers. A tour around the campus ended in the newly renovated Dipoli, where students met up with newly appointed President of Aalto, Ilkka Niemelä. The night ended on a high note as the company gathered at AYY’s Rantasauna, the seaside sauna. The guests were greeted by an old AYY spokesperson of 2013, Piia Kuosmanen, who had taken her turn visiting SUTU and who now works closely with Chinese businesses in the field of technology. With her lead the two groups talked about the similarities and differences in Finnish and Chinese cultures. Naturally the guests also got a first-hand experience of the Finnish culture, as they got to warm up in the sauna as well as take a dip into the cold, cold sea.

As Tuesday rolled around, so did the sun, finally gracing Helsinki with its warmth. The Chinese guests were given an extensive tour of our beautiful capital, its nature and architecture – most notably Kamppi’s Chapel of Silence, The Parliament House and its surroundings, as well as more industrial areas such as that around Nosturi.

The first company visit planned lead the delegation to Naisasialiito Unioni, the feminist non-governmental organization. Its Secretary General, Milla Pyykkönen, lead a conversation that interested both the Chinese and Finnish representatives. The parties got to hear about the development of gender equality in Finland, as well as Naisliitto Unioni’s project to increase gender sensitivity in early childhood education.

Board member Onni guiding the tour around the campus.


As the weather continued to surprise and delight, the visit continued with a trip to the national park of Nuuksio and its picturesque lakeside. As could be expected, the programme constisted of grilling, sauna and general wandering around the forest. As citizens of an industrial metropolis, the guests were most fascinated by blueberries, right there for their picking.

To balance out the relaxing day surrounded by nature, the next day was filled with excursions to Helsinki area’s businesses, starting with Metso Automation in Vantaa. The company’s Director of Technology, Jukka Borgman, walked the party through the workings of the organization, as well as the physical facilities. Highly automated valve and flow control device producing plant gave our guests interesting view of Finland’s advanced manufacturing industry. The tour ended in lunch in Metso’s own cafeteria.

Board member Pyry explaining the blueprints of Dipoli.


Obviously one excursion a day is not enough, so in the afternoon the delegation headed to Finnair’s headquarters, located at the Helsinki-Vantaa airport. A general introduction was lead by Finnair’s VP Group Treasurer, Christine Rovelli, followed by a workshop on the development of Finnair’s services on the Chinese market, facilitated by the Project Lead in Corporate Development, Henrik Balkin. Afterwards Finnair kindly invited the students for snacks and a great view over the whole airport. And as if that wasn’t enough excitement for one day, the night ended with a headfirst dive into the culture of Finnish academic table parties, sitsit.

The Chinese guests’ last full day in Finland began together with the chair of board of Espoo City Council, Markku Markkula, who also serves as a chair of board in EU Committee of Regions. He walked the students through the development of the city. The afternoon was spent at Eteläranta which houses the headquarters of Elinkeinoelämän keskusliitto, Confederation of Finnish Industries. EK’s leading economist, Penna Urrila, told the delegation about how the Finnish economy is constructed and how it is going to develop in the future.

In the evening the guests had some time to pack up before meeting up for a dinner party that also served as Aalto’s former President Tuula Teeri’s farewell party. The party continued long into the night, but by 5 in the morning the Chinese part of the company had to leave for the airport, accompanied by a few sleepy-eyed members of AYY’s board.

The Finnish boards’ reciprocal visit to Beijing will have to wait until next year. But we are sure that the bonds we built will last and that our visit will be as much of a success as SUTU’s trip here – full of smiles, excitement and mutual appreciation. 再见 (zài jiàn) – it doesn’t mean goodbye, it means see you later!

Text: Noora Vänttinen/Katarina Vesikko

Photos: Petteri Heliste

Why Small and Medium Enterprises Need to Focus on Internationalization of Workforce

tiistai, elokuu 22nd, 2017

In this blog post Alok Jain from AYY’s Corporate Relations section writes about the internationalization of Small and Medium Enterprises and how AYY aims to boost it by arranging My Career in Finland event for the international talent of the Aalto community.

In Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) internationalization of workforce might not be a priority. Usually, the need for the international workforce is felt when SMEs venture into a new market or when it requires specific skills. However, internationalization of workforce in SMEs can prove to be much more useful. In today’s turbulent industrial environment, internationalization can help SMEs in its survival and early recognition of opportunities.

SMEs ride on the wave of turbulence that exists in today’s business environment. The business environment of almost all the industry is changing at a fast pace and it is not going to stop in near future. Change is real and it is coming! The success of most of the SMEs today may be attributed to their ability to foresee opportunities in turbulence and capitalize on it. Consequently, it can be said with utmost certainty, that survival and success of SMEs in future will depend on its ability to ride the wave of turbulence in the respective industry. In such business environment, stability or equilibrium is the precursor to death. Organizational stability is the greatest risk for which SMEs need to plan its strategy. Strategic planning in a complex and unforeseen environment is always a difficult task, however; the positive aspect of a complex environment is that it has the capacity to self-organize! Therefore, to avoid organizational stability, it just needs to be disturbed! The dots do connect, and connect for better if the lattice is disturbed in just the right way!

This is achieved because bounded instability is the breeding ground for innovation. A perfectly stable organizational environment does not generate innovative solutions, nor does a highly chaotic one. A right mix of chaos can instill the capability to innovate. The right mix of chaos can disturb the organizational lattice and reorganize it with innovation! The right mix of chaos can help SMEs survive in the turbulent business environment. The right mix of chaos has always been a key for survival; it is the law of nature. Nature has created diversity to induce right mix of chaos and help survival. The species without diversity among it is the most vulnerable to external threat. This is because a lack of diversity makes it easier for external agents to plan their move against such species.

This is true for organizations as well. People are the chromosomes of organizations. People are the genetic material of the organization that creates diversity and induces right mix of chaos! Such diversity within the organization makes them less vulnerable to turbulent business environment. Internationalization of workforce, thus, is an urgent need of SMEs.

True, SMEs can hire international people to achieve this objective, but here’s the rub: this alone is not sufficient to bring the required diversity and right mix of chaos. The existing social order and organizational culture act as ‘antibodies’ to neutralize the advantage of diversity. Internationalization of workforce can be achieved when the organizational culture allows accommodating different opinions and encourages personal development.

To facilitate this AYY is organizing a career event targeted to international members of the community with the name ‘My Career in Finland’ on the 21st November of 2017. The event is expected to see participation from 400 international students representing 95 different nationality. The event features different career related workshops, talks and networking opportunity with companies. Register an employer stand at the event now! Follow this link to know more about the event.

Alok Jain
AYY’s Corporate Relations Section

Blog text Adapted from Pascale, R.T. ‘Surfing the edge of chaos’, Sloan management review, 1999.

Survey on health care services and health insurances of international students – the alarming results

torstai, kesäkuu 15th, 2017

Students from outside of the EU/EEA need to have a residency permit to start their studies in Finland, and having a private health insurance is one of the requirements for getting a residency permit. Degree students of all nationalities are entitled to a home municipality in Finland and can use public healthcare services. Students from EU member countries can use public health care services with a European Health Insurance Card. All university students who are members of any student union can also use the Finnish Student Health Service (FSHS/YTHS). However, international students do not have access to KELA benefits (unless they work in Finland for a certain time period).

Aalto University Student Union (AYY) in cooperation with the Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY) has conducted a survey on the use of these healthcare services and health insurances among international students in Finland. The survey was produced by the research foundation Otus. The anonymous survey collected 475 answers from students in Aalto and Helsinki universities, 246 of which were degree or exchange students from Aalto University.

In the survey we wanted to find out how well international students know the health service providers, how do the health insurances work and what kind of channels are used to get information on these issues. In the next sections we will first go over receiving care, then health insurances and issues with these.


Receiving treatment

In this section we will present results on how well international students received treatment. One of the questions was how well international students received required health care services while staying in Finland. These results are covered in table 1.


Table 1. Have you received the required care or health services in Finland? (n= 303)


There is a clear difference between students who have come from EU/EAA countries and students from outside EU/EEA in attainment of health care services. Only 64% of non-EU/EEA students said they felt they got the required treatment always or on most occasions, whereas 81% of EU/EEA students report the same.

Out of the students from both EU/ETA and other countries those who did not always receive the care they needed brought up different reasons. These results are represented in table 2.


Table 2. If you have not always received required healthcare, how often did you receive care despite these reasons? (n= 475) (NB. there was an option to choose several reasons)


The main reason for not getting treatment among participants was not knowing what their insurance covered. 64% of the respondents felt that unawareness of these issues lead to them receiving required treatment sometimes, seldom, or never at all. The other major reasons were not being aware of available services and being deemed not eligible for aid by health care services.


Health insurances used by international students

In this section we will go over different health insurances used by international students and their experiences with applying for compensation and dealing with insurance companies. These questions were asked only from students from outside EU/ETA for whom the insurance is required.

There are several health insurance providers international students use. The insurance recommended by Finnish authorities and universities is SIP Insurances, according to a tendering process done in the early 2010s by a consortium of universities. SIP Insurances have a market share of 26% among the respondents. As seen in table 3, other popular insurances are Swisscare (27%) and International Student Insurance (13%).

Table 3. Health insurance provider (n=323) 


The respondents were also asked about the process of acquiring an insurance. Only 38% of the respondents felt they had received enough information regarding the contents of the insurance and the terms of compensation, as seen in table 4. Buying an insurance does not seem to be a difficult process for the respondents, but it seems that students just get the insurance for the sake of getting the residency permit – without really knowing how the insurance functions or what its coverage is.



Table 4. Opinions on getting the insurance among students with insurance (n= 323)

As seen in table 5, the biggest problem of getting insurance was not knowing what kind of insurance one should buy, which 35% of respondents found to be an issue. 30% felt it was difficult to find information on the different available options. According to the official report the most popular source of information were university pages (32%), Migri web pages (22%), friends (21%) and Study in Finland web pages (19%).

Some students (4%) found that their general health, such as pre-existing conditions made it hard to get an insurance. This is extremely worrisome and against the principle of equality.


Table 5. Issues when getting the insurance (n=323)


Table 6. shows the issues stated above as complied into different insurance providers. Note that in some of these the amount of answers was very low.


’Table 6. Insurances as complied by different providers.



International students are required to have a private health insurance in order to commence their studies in Finland, but they are left alone with the problems they face with insurances. There is not enough information provided by the authorities, Study in Finland page or the universities, and when compared to similar pages in other European countries, the level of detail on Finnish pages is rather low.

Finnish authorities and universities only thinking about providing international students with degrees is unsustainable. A more holistic approach to internationalisation of universities is needed in Finland. Putting efforts into developing degrees and teaching is important, but if basic services like health care, banking or immigration services have grave problems, Finland is hardly a dream destination. What needs to be taken into account is the whole experience of integrating international students into the Finnish society, and problems with basic needs such as healthcare reflect negatively on the image of Finnish education.

International students have the right to a well-functioning, affordable and accessible insurance, as well as proper information on healthcare and health insurances. Issues with health care and adequate compensation for health care costs need to be taken very seriously. If Finland truly wants to welcome its international students, all parties involved need to step up their game. A new tendering process is needed, as the health insurance now recommended by the universities and authorities has the gravest problems and lowest customer satisfaction among students. Immigration authorities, universities and the National Agency for Education need to sit down together and start developing solutions.


Milla Ovaska, Specialist, International Affairs

Aalto University Student Union

contact: international(at)

Day 7 with Tsinghua: Finnish business and farewell to our friends

keskiviikko, elokuu 31st, 2016

Theme for the last day of Tsinghua University student visit was Finnish companies and business. We visited Metso, a big Finnish exchange-listed machinery company serving eg. mining, construction, oil and gas, pulp, paper and process industries and Supercell, a successful gaming company behind HayDay and Clash of Clans. The day was concluded by a happy farewell dinner with our friends.

Our visit at Metso began with a bus ride to Metso Flow Control facility at Hakkila, Vantaa where the primary manufacturing focus is on valves. We were welcomed by the Head of Offering Management Taina Rajala who introduced us to the company.

The visit continued with an interesting tour at the manufacturing floor. Robots picking up components to be assembled into products verified the vision of a modern and progressive facility and company. One other thing that really caught our Chinese friends’ attention was the safety of all personnel, which was visible all around the facility. Even though most of our group weren’t previously familiar with the technology, there was a great deal of interesting things to see. It was our common opinion that Metso would certainly be an interesting and attractive employer.

Our visitor group at Metso Flow Control facility in Vantaa. Safety first!

Our visitor group at Metso Flow Control facility in Vantaa. Safety first!

After Metso we visited Supercell at their HQ in Ruoholahti. This was one of the most anticipated visits for our guests and they had a lot of user feedback and suggestions about the successful Clash Royale mobile game. During the visit we were told about the ideology around which the whole company is built: best people make best games. It was interesting to see the freedom and independence of the Supercell. For example the CEO Ilkka Paananen has little power on what the teams decide to do and people are free to switch teams. We want to thank our AYY board alumni Janne Peltola for hosting the visit!

CEO Ilkka Paananen was also one of the founding members of the hugely successful and international Slush startup event so it was only natural to invite Slush members Josefiina Kotilainen and Olga Balakina along to tell our guests what it is all about. The Aalto University Startup ecosystem intrigued us a lot and our Chinese friends found it especially interesting how large portion of it is accomplished volunteers and students.

Taste of super awesome mobile gaming atmosphere at Supercell!

Taste of super awesome mobile gaming atmosphere at Supercell!

In the evening we had to bid our dear friends farewell. We had a nice dinner and finnish dishes including roast reindeer, meatballs and salmon. The entire week was over very fast with interesting program and interesting people. It was very nice to get to know our guests and to know that the connection between us and our student unions will last.

AYY would like to thank Tsinghua Student Union for precious gifts and our partner Metso for support!

Tsinghua university student union sightseeing in Helsinki and academic dinner party with Aalto-Tsinghua startup bridge

maanantai, elokuu 8th, 2016

Saturday with our guests started with introducing the wonders of our public transport system by taking the bus 102T. The view of coastal Espoo got compliments from the Tsinghua students and we discussed the history of Helsinki and the differences between Helsinki and Beijin on our way to Kamppi.

For our sightseeing tour we chose to walk from Kamppi to Stockmann and from there to the Senate Square, talking about the architecture and different landmark buildings like the modern arts museum on the way as well as pointing out the main spots for shopping. It seems like everything in Finland is currently being renovated but this did not seem to bother our guests much, likely because construction sites are such a common sight in China.

We left our guests off at the Market Square to have a free reign on how to spend the afternoon in Helsinki and went off to prepare for the main event of the day which was an introduction to the academic sitsi party culture! The dinner party was at Aalto Design Factory in Otaniemi and attending were our guests, the Aalto-Tsinghua startup bridge group and a number of former AYY board members. The sitsi party was a great success, with brilliant musical performances by some of the guests, remembering past visits between Aalto and Tsinghua and an all-vegan menu featuring the Finnish innovation pulled oats.


View from the sitsi party on saturday.

The second day in our schedule was on the more relaxed side in anticipation for the upcoming week full of formal visits from the morning until late in the day.

Hallitus esittäytyy: Rosa Väisänen

lauantai, maaliskuu 19th, 2016

Well hello there, sweet thing!

RosaI’m Rosa, one of the four advocacy wizards in the board of AYY and a fourth-year architecture student. My sectors are international affairs, new students and development cooperation, a groovy combination of educational policies, juicy meetings and organizational activities. After three years in the board of my dear guild and two years as a volunteer at AYY’s international sector I made the best decision of my life and applied for the board and, well, here I am, still quite startled that I get to be surrounded by this bright community every day.

This year my goal is to encourage and support associations in their internationalization objectives, develop Aalto’s student mobility and promote the acknowledgement of tutoring as an important part of the reception, orientation and engagement of new students both to the academic and student community. Golden projects, right? In addition to these my mind will be dancing with questions concerning the new tuition fee system: as you might already know, Aalto University is preparing the tuition fee system for non EU-ETA students and the system will start operating in 2017.

This of course means big changes in our university: what does this mean to the programs, services and teaching? What about internationalization and the number of students? In this new situation one of my projects is to update AYY’s policy paper on tuition fees. The aim is to have a broad opinion on how the system should work and what has to be done when the university starts charging our students. If you’re interested in influencing this, I’d love to have you at the tuition fee workshop on the 30th of March, 17.30 at the rooftop sauna of Vaasankatu 10. Don’t hesitate to contact me whether it is about tuition fees or anything else, I am here for your questions and comments!

Lots of love,


P.S. Check out the background material on tuition fee policy paper and send your comments to .

Lukukausimaksut silkkaa kryptoniittia

perjantai, lokakuu 23rd, 2015

Sipilän hallitus toi eduskunnalle melkein identtisen esityksen lukukausimaksuista EU- ja ETA-maiden ulkopuolisille opiskelijoille kuin edellinen hallitus yritti. Edellisellä kerralla lakiesitys ei koskaan päätynyt eduskunnan käsittelyyn, koska hallitus ei päässyt asiasta yhteisymmärrykseen, mutta nyt Kokoomus, Keskusta ja Perussuomalaiset ovat löytäneet yhteisen sävelen kansainvälisten opiskelijoiden pään menoksi. Nyt hallitus esittää pakollisia, vähintään 1500 euron lukuvuosimaksuja EU- ja ETA-alueen ulkopuolisille opiskelijoille.

AYY on aiemmin ottanut kantaa lukukausimaksuja vastaan esimerkiksi avaamalla miten huonoja perustelut maksuille ovat, kertomalla Aallon lukukausimaksukokeilun tuloksista ja kritisoimalla muidenkin kuin hallituksen huonoja ideoita lukukausimaksujen ulottamisesta kaikille. Lienee kuitenkin paikallaan vielä kerran vääntää rautalangasta miksi juuri Aalto-yliopistossa lukukausimaksut olisivat pirun huono idea.

1. Lukukausimaksut ovat kryptoniittia kansainvälisyydelle.

Aallon tavoite on olla aidosti kansainvälinen yliopistoyhteisö ja rakentaa suomalaisen yhteiskunnan kansainvälisyyttä. Ulkomaisten opiskelijoiden määrän väistämätön vähentyminen ja jäljelle jäävien todennäköinen keskittyminen tiettyihin, tehokkaasti markkinoitavissa oleviin ohjelmiin, näivettää kampustemme kansainvälisyyttä. Let’s face it, me olemme aika yksin täällä pohjolassa. Miten voimme pärjätä kansainvälisessä tutkimus- ja työelämässä, jos emme pääse sitä harjoittelemaan? Neljän kuukauden vaihtojakso ei korvaa sitä, että työskentelee rinta rinnan eri puolilta maailmaa tulevien ihmisten kanssa koko opiskeluaikansa. Nykyaikainen, kansainvälinen yhteisö ei saa olla vain harvojen etuoikeus.

2. Eikös sitä byrokratiaa pitänyt purkaa?

Lukukausimaksujen käyttöönotto varmasti vähentäisi hakemusten määrää. Tämän tehnee kuitenkin jo vuonna 2016 voimaan astuva 100 euron hakijamaksu muualla kuin EU/ETA-alueella aiemman koulutuksensa suorittaneille. Ruotsissa samanaikainen hakijamaksujen ja lukukausimaksujen käyttöönotto vuonna 2011 lukeutuu ruotsalaisten asiantuntijoiden mukaan kategoriaan huonosti harkitut uudistukset ja johti hakijamäärän tippumiseen 80 prosentilla. Byrokratia ei maksujen käyttöönotolla vähene vaan lisääntyy, koska lukukausimaksut vaativat hallituksen esityksen mukaan parikseen stipendejä. Tämä olisi Suomessa täysin uutta ja tulisi nykyisen hallinnon päälle.

Stipendijärjestelmän pyörittäminen ei ole ilmaista, ja lukukausimaksukokeilu, vaikka huono olikin, osoitti, että todennäköisyys ottaa opiskelupaikka vastaan korreloi hyvin vahvasti stipendin suuruuden kanssa. Jonkun täytyy siis käyttää aikaansa siihen, että hakemuksia käsitellään, rahastoja pyöritetään, kriteerejä hiotaan ja stipendien sisältöjä pohditaan. Huippulahjakkaiden stipendit maailmalla sisältävät usein muutakin kuin pelkät opinnot. Aallon lukukausimaksukokeilussa parhaassa stipendikategoriassa stipendi korvasi lukukausimaksut sekä 8000 euroa elinkustannuksia. Jotenkin vaikea uskoa, että suomalaiset yliopistot olisivat innokkaita maksamaan yhteiskunnan varoilla vuokria ulkomaisille opiskelijoille. Ja vaikka olisivatkin, jokunen veronmaksaja voisi siitä ärähtää.

3. Lukukausimaksut ovat huonoa bisnestä.

Pienenevä opiskelijamäärä, hallinnolliset kulut, stipendit, markkinointikulut ja muut lieveilmiöt tekevät lukukausimaksujen perimisestä melko kallista puuhaa. Realistisesti ajatellen lukukausimaksuilla pystyttäisiin kattamaan vain murto-osa koulutuksen hinnasta. Ei ole mitään vihjeitä siitä, että maailmalla olisi innokas joukko ihmisiä, jotka haluaisivat maksaa suomalaisesta kauppatieteen maisterin tutkinnosta 40 000 euroa. On mietittävä erittäin tarkkaan missä menee raja, että vaiva on suurempi kuin hyöty. Vielä erityisesti sen vuoksi, että työllistyessään Suomeen kansainvälinen osaaja maksaa progressiivisen verotuksemme kautta tutkintonsa useita kertoa työuransa aikana. Hallituksen esityksessä todetaan, että kansainvälisten tutkinto-opiskelijoiden kansantaloudelle tuomia hyötyjä ei ole Suomessa vielä kattavasti arvioitu. Vastaavia tutkimuksia on kuitenkin tehty esim. Saksassa, missä lopputulema oli, että jos 30 % ilmaisen tutkinnon suorittaneista kansainvälisistä opiskelijoista jää Saksaan töihin, ollaan plussan puolella. Lukukausimaksuista luopunut ja avoimesti kansainvälisiin osaajiin suhtautuvilla työmarkkinoilla varustettu Saksa onkin tutkimuksissa nousemassa kv-opiskelijoiden suosikkikohteeksi.

Lukukausimaksuista puhuttaessa heilutetaan myös koulutusvientikorttia. Yliopistot eivät kuitenkaan saa julkisrahoitteisina toimijoina kilpailla yritysten kanssa eivätkä käyttää heille annettua rahoitusta sen kaltaiseen toimintaan. Se lienee ihan fiksu sääntö, sillä millään muillakaan sektoreilla ei yleensä toivota julkisen talouden kilpailevan yksityisten palveluntuottajien kanssa. Siksi koulutusvientiä tehdään usein yliopistojen perustamien yritysten kautta. Yritykset eivät kuitenkaan voi myöntää yliopistotutkintoja kuin tilauskoulutuksen kautta. Tutkintonimikkeet ovat tarkasti säädeltyjä, jotta niiden laatuun ja oikeudellisuuteen voi todella luottaa. Koulutusvientiin soveltuvat tuotteina paremmin laajemmat koulutusprojektit (kuten opettajien kouluttaminen Lähi-Idässä) tai tarkat erikoistutkinnot (metsäkoneenkuljettajat Perussa, rehtoriopinnot Kiinassa) kuin tutkinnot itsessään. Tätä vientiä tehdään jo eikä lakimuutos liity niihin mitenkään.

4. Onko tämä nyt mitenkään reilua?

Aallon perusarvoja ovat eettisyys, avoimuus ja tasa-arvo. Hyvin samanlaisia arvoja löytyy kaikkien yliopistojen taustalta. Hallitus on tuomassa esitystä, joka asettaa eri puolilta maailmaa tulevat ihmiset eri asemaan toisensa kanssa. Lisäksi lukukausimaksut itsessään vaikuttavat hyvin eri tavoin eri sosioekonomisesta taustasta tuleviin ihmisiin. Hallitus pakottaisi yliopistot toimimaan vastoin niiden omia arvoja, joita on pidetty ainakin tähän asti tärkeinä myös koko Suomen valtiossa.


Susanna Koistinen, koulutuspoliittinen asiantuntija
Milla Ovaska, kansainvälisten asioiden asiantuntija

Niinistö kannustaa kehittämään yliopistojen välistä yhteistyötä

keskiviikko, elokuu 5th, 2015

KONEen vierailun jälkeen suuntasimme Naantaliin tapaamaan presidentti Niinistöä. Hän otti meidät vastaan Kultarannassa perinteisesti sisustetussa huvilassa.

© Tasavallan presidentin kanslia (Office of the President of the Republic of Finland)

© Tasavallan presidentin kanslia (Office of the President of the Republic of Finland)

Saulilta löytyi hyviä näkökulmia kaikista esille nostamistamme aiheista. Puhuimme esimerkiksi siitä miten PK-yrityksiä voisi tukea Kiinan markkinoille lähtemisessä. Heikki Koponen mainitsi, että tulevana syksynä järjestetään Slush myös Beijingissä ja projektissa on mukana monia Aaltolaisia opiskelijoita.

Keskustelussamme lopulla sivusimme tietysti myös ajankohtaista aihetta eli kasveja ja palsternakkoja. Vieraidemme mielestä oli söpöä kuulla, että valtionpäämies ei ole lukkiutunut liian jäykkään rooliin. Niinistö näki yliopistojemme välisen yhteistyön tärkeänä.

© Tasavallan presidentin kanslia (Office of the President of the Republic of Finland)

© Tasavallan presidentin kanslia (Office of the President of the Republic of Finland)

Hallituksen vierailu Köpenhaminaan – DTU Lyngby kampus

keskiviikko, toukokuu 27th, 2015

AYY:n hallitus kävi toukokuun alussa vierailulla Köpenhaminassa Tanskan teknillisen korkeakoulun (DTU) ylioppilaskunnan Polyteknisk Foreningen luona. DTU on yksi Euroopan johtavista teknillisistä yliopistoista. Vierailun aikana kävimme antoisia keskusteluja esimerkiksi opiskelijan toimeentulosta, yhteisöllisestä asumisesta, lukukausimaksuista ja yliopiston yhteishengestä. Suuren vaikutuksen meihin teki myös yliopiston kampus, jossa kävimme pitkällä kierroksella. Alla kampuksen parhaat palat kuvien muodossa.

Kampusalue on suuri, se käsittää 106 hehtaaria ja yli sata rakennusta. Alueella liikkuminen on kuitenkin suhteellisen helppoa, sillä kampus on jaettu insinöörimäisesti koordinaattiakseleilla neljään eri osioon. Koordinaatiston origo sijaitsee päärakennuksen vieressä kampuksen keskellä ja akseleina toimivat kampuksen suurimmat tiet, jotka ovat sopivasti lähes kohtisuorassa toisiinsa nähden. Jokainen rakennus on numeroitu ja ensimmäinen numero kertoo mihin koordinaatiston neljännekseen rakennus kuuluu ja loput kaksi kertovat suurpiirteisesti kuinka kaukana origosta se sijaitsee.


Lungbyn kampus on hyvin metsäinen. Ulkoalueet parkkipaikkoja myöten ovat puistoja ja jopa rakennusten sisällä on eläviä puita.


Kampuksen lävitse kulkeva parkkipaikkakin on puistomainen


Kampuksen kiertää viiden kilometrin mittainen lenkkipolku

Kampuksen kiertää viiden kilometrin mittainen lenkkipolku

Rakennusten sisälläkin voi rentoutua puiden varjossa

Rakennusten sisälläkin voi rentoutua puiden varjossa





















Kampuksella rakennetaan paljon uutta. Rakennustyömaista on kuitenkin tehty mielenkiintoisia ja interaktiivisia.

Työmaan seinään saa laattoja kääntämällä tehdä omia taideteoksia

Työmaan seinään saa laattoja kääntämällä tehdä omia taideteoksia


Työmaalle pääsee kurkistelemaan seinässä olevien aukkojen kautta tai kiipeämällä palikoiden päälle

Työmaalle pääsee kurkistelemaan seinässä olevien aukkojen kautta tai kiipeämällä palikoiden päälle


Kampuksen käytävät ja aulatilat on otettu hyötykäyttöön opiskelutiloiksi.


Sohvaryhmiä koulun käytävällä


Koulun tiloista löytyy myös runsaasti vapaa-ajan viettotilaa opiskelijoille.


DTU:n ylioppilaskunnan Polyteknisk föreningenin opiskelijatalossa S-husetissa on esimerkiksi biljardipöytiä


Jokaisessa kampuksen neljänneksessä on opiskelijavoimin pyörivä baari. Kuvassa kemian osaston Etheren

Jokaisessa kampuksen neljänneksessä on opiskelijavoimin pyörivä baari. Kuvassa kemian osaston Etheren


Tiloista löytyy myös mahdollisuuksia pelata niin älyä kuin muita taitoja kehittäviä pelejä.

Päärakennuksen sisäpihalta löytyy kenttä suosittua juomapeliä varten

Päärakennuksen sisäpihalta löytyy kenttä suosittua juomapeliä varten


Kirjastossa on valtava shakkilauta

Kirjastossa on valtava shakkilauta


Milja Asikainen

Hallituksen jäsen, kansainväliset asiat



VSETH (student union of ETH Zürich) visited AYY annual gala

keskiviikko, maaliskuu 4th, 2015

This year, AYY, the student union of the newly founded Aalto University in Helsinki turned five. Along with other student unions, the VSETH board went to Helsinki to congratulate them on the anniversary. What we got in return was not only a great time but also lots of inspiration.


Startup sauna and more

Among the best things we saw at Aalto University was the design factory – a prototype, but similar to the student project house at ETH. It is an experimental cooperation platform for education, research, application and design and connects business life with universities. Professors come to inspire education, students can work with heavy machinery and they can learn how to go through the process of problem solving with a product as the end result.

One great output of Aalto students is a place called ”startup sauna“. At a different location on campus, there is a building dedicated to students who want to come over and work on their project in various open spaces.

Student culture

Besides visiting Aalto University and all its special places, we also participated in AYY’s very unique student culture. Since most of the student housing is owned by AYY itself, they have an unimaginable freedom in deciding what to do with those buildings. There seems to be at least one sauna in every house. These saunas are connected to a ”hangout“ space for parties. As a group, you can reserve these spaces and have a good time. A little more public are the so-called ”club-rooms“ for different associations.


Traditional dining with a twist


And finally there was the big celebration of AYY in a dining hall including some of the most ridiculous but at the same time most entertaining traditions we have ever seen in our lives. At one point during the evening, for some reason, the stage was occupied by a boat engine painted in pink. The celebration was rounded off by a lavish brunch the next day.


Everybody decided that we need more input from our friends in the Nordic five tech. We will thus have a follow-up meeting in Denmark at DTU on the second weekend of May. Hopefully this will broaden our mind in the same way as our trip to Helsinki did. Although it may sound a bit odd, these international exchanges are extremely important in looking for unused potential in our resources. We learn new ways of approaching the same problems and see how the dynamics of traditions change drastically, if you modify certain parameters.

VSETH delegation having a speech

VSETH delegation having a speech



If you are interested in the details of our exchange and our views of certain traditions at AYY, send us an email to! We will be glad to tell you the whole story.


Thomas Gumbsch


VSETH – Verband der Studierenden an der ETH Zürich