The Student Union of the University of Vaasa (VYY) represents all students of the University, around 4100 people, and supervises their interests both locally and nationally. VYY works actively on campus of the University as well as on the local level in cooperation with the City of Vaasa and other higher education providers.
Opiskelijan Vaasa, a Vaasa-based student association, was founded in 2014. It promotes the interests of all university students in Vaasa. Opiskelijan Vaasa’s founding members are VYY, Åbo Akademi Studentkår (ÅAS), Student Union of Hanken School of Economics in Vaasa (SSHV), Association of Helsinki University law students in Vaasa (Justus ry), Student Union of Vaasa University of Applied Sciences (VAMOK) and Novia University of Applied Sciences Student Union Novium.
VYY also makes an impact on the national level both independently and through its role in the National Union of University Students in Finland (SYL).
Supervision of student interests is a core task of the Student Union and it includes a wide array of issues. VYY influences, among other things, the administration and structures of the University, training programs and education management, as well as issues related to the quality of education, students’ right to security and equal treatment, student healthcare and well-being, student housing and employment, international students’ status, local transport and light traffic development.
The Universities Act guarantees all students an opportunity to influence the University’s internal development. One of Vaasa University’s strengths is the small size of its community. VYY wants to be proactively involved in the debate for development of the University and to make its own contribution by introducing new initiatives.
VYY supervision of interests can be roughly divided into educational and social policy issues and international affairs related to them.
VYY is actively involved in the development of education and teaching inside the University. The goals of our supervision of interests are maintaining the high quality and prestige of education and teaching at the University of Vaasa, ensuring that Vaasa is a good place to study and assisting our graduates in finding employment in their own field quickly.
Students’ income, ability to study and well-being are at the heart of social policy activities. Influencing students’ income happens mainly through financial aid and VYY has been active in the development of the student financial aid. In particular, VYY wants to encourage students to work alongside studies in order to acquire valuable work experience already before graduation. We monitor our members’ benefits and work hard to improve the opportunities for students to influence their own income.
Education and social policy issues are discussed and planned in the Committee for Student Interests that is open for all members of the student union.
The University of Vaasa is one of Finland’s most international universities as we have proportionally more international students than other universities. VYY’s Committee for International Affairs coordinates the cooperation between international operators and helps to monitor international students’ interests. The Committee’s activities are open to all members of the Student Union.