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The first election days of the Student Union of the University of Helsinki’s (HYY) Representative Council elections have been electric. Around 3,600 students voted during the first three election days. Voter turnout is currently at 13.6% – a figure that is higher than the turnout in last elections’ advance voting. All members of HYY who have registered for attendance at the University of Helsinki are eligible to vote. This amounts to a total of around 26,600 students of the University of Helsinki.

The Representative Council elections of the Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY) are held during 26–28 October 2016 and 31 October–2 November 2016 to elect the highest decision-making body of the Student Union, the 60-member Representative Council. The new council begins its term on 1 December 2016 and the term lasts for two years.

HYY’s previous elections were organised as ballot elections in 2014, with two days of advance voting and two actual election days. A total of 2,671 people voted in advance in the elections, and the voter turnout for advance voting was 9.5%. HYY’s first electronic elections do not feature advance voting at all; instead, you can vote on six election days between 10 am and 6 pm.

HYY’s Representative Council elections feature 597 students running as candidates. The number of candidates is slightly lower than in 2014 when 626 candidates ran for the council. 10 different groups nominated candidates, with some of these groups planning to function as several groups in the Representative Council. To see the exact candidate numbers for all electoral coalitions and alliances, please see the Student Union’s election website at hyy.fi/elections.

On election days, campaigning can be seen near the campuses throughout the city. The elections culminate in the election night party at the Teatteri Forum restaurant on Wednesday night, 2 November. Everyone is welcome to attend the election night party.

During the 2000s, voter turnout has consistently been on a higher level in HYY’s Representative Council elections than nationally.

HYY’s Representational Council elections (voter turnout)
2001: 28.9%
2003: 31.6%
2005: 34.9%
2007: 33.2%
2009: 35.2%
2011: 34.2%
2012: 32.3%
2014: 31.7%*

National voter turnout in representational council elections
2001: 27.5%
2003: 29.7%
2005: 26.1%
2007: 27.6%
2009: 28.4%
2011: 29.6%
2013: 25.0%
2015: 29.4%*
* = in 2012, HYY moved into a different electoral rhythm than other student unions, holding elections on even years
    
HYY will report on the results of its Representative Council elections immediately after the election result is available on Wednesday night, 2 November.

Representative council elections are held in nearly all Finnish student unions every other autumn. The elections are, however, held at a different rhythm in HYY than in other student unions – besides HYY, only the Student Union of Hanken School of Economics organises their elections this year. HYY’s elections are held on even years, whereas other student unions’ representative council elections are organised on uneven years.
 
For further information on HYY’s elections, please contact Secretary General Jannica Aalto, paasihteeri@hyy.fi, 0400 816 426, or Communications Officer Siiri Salo, tiedottaja@hyy.fi, 050 543 9609.

The university of Helsinki is officially bilingual (Finnish and Swedish). HYY honours a person or association that has promoted bilingualism at the university with the prize “Bilingual act of the year”. The winner is published at the Finnish Swedish Heritage Day on 6 November.

If you know, for instance, a student organization that functions well in both Finnish and Swedish or if you have attended a good bilingual course, then please let us know.

Suggestions should be sent to board member Rasmus Olander (rasmus.olander(at)hyy.fi) by 31 October. The suggestions should include reasons for the nomination.

The students who receive student financial aid from the Finnish state, but have not made enough progress in their studies compared to the aid they have received, will receive a request for information on their studies in October. if you receive a request, amke sure to answer it!

If you are in higher education you must complete at least 5 credits on average for each month of financial aid and at least 20 credits per each academic year.

If you have not earned at least 5 credits per each month of financial aid in the preceding academic year, you may still be able to get financial aid if you have earned at least 5 credits per month during your entire course of study.

Provide a reply to the financial aid committee on the form accompanying the letter requesting information or submit a separate explanation. Describe how your personal situation has impacted your studies.

Acceptable reasons for slower study progress include an illness of your own or of your close family member, otherwise difficult circumstances, or completing a particularly large study module (such as a thesis). Another reason which may be accepted is if you stop your studies because of the birth of a child or the performance of compulsory military service, alternative civilian service or women's voluntary armed service. If possible, enclose an official document (for example a doctor's note) about the reason affecting your study progress.

If you do not reply or the reasons you provide are not accepted, your financial aid can be discontinued or made payable for a specified period of time only. You may also be required to pay back financial aid, if it is discovered that your study progress has been particularly slow and if it is evident that you never intended to study at all.

Kom också ihåg när du planerar dina studier för det nuvarande läsåret att du måste få 5 studiepoäng per stödmånad och 20 studiepoängper läsår om du lyfter studiestöd!

For more information please see the Kela website.

Every autumn, HYY's Good Teacher - Magister bonus prize is awarded to a teacher who has shown skills and interest both in teaching and students. All the student community members or organisations may nominate candidates.

When awarding the 2016 prize, special consideration is given to the way in which the candidates encourage students to lifelong learning, self-development and developing their own skills.

Criteria for the prize are:

Student-friendliness

In addition to a positive attitude, student-friendliness also includes the willingness to improve general well-being and communality. An attitude that appreciates students can be seen in counselling, lectures and in other activities.

Expertise

Expertise appears as the ability to highlight essential issues. A good teacher is enthusiastic about their field and also conveys one's enthuasism to students. A professional teacher is also a student's reliable guide to the scientific community. 

Active attitude towards development 

A good teacher actively develops both oneself as a teacher and one's teaching methods. A good teacher has a positive attitude towards the development of teaching and uses new teaching technology applications, electronic systems and information technology in teaching. A good teacher works as a part of the scientific community and aims to develop teaching at one's department and the university.

Giving and receiving constructive feedback 

A good teacher knows how to collect feedback and also actively uses the feedback to develop teaching. A good teacher knows how to give constructive feedback to students and encourages students to an open dialogue.

Nominations for the Magister Bonus prize should be submitted via the e-form by noon on 25th of October.

E-form: https://elomake.helsinki.fi/lomakkeet/72860/lomake.html

The reasons should include examples of how the nominated person fulfills the criteria. The application may also include the candidate's related prior recognitions, nominations and prizes, as well as the university portfolio if they have one. You may download this information as attachments in the e-form.

In addition, the application may include comments by students and other members of the academic community or other suitable examples of the candidate's merits.

Magister Bonus prize winners from the previous years:

http://hyy.helsinki.fi/fi/opiskelijalle/opiskelun-tuki/hyy-tukee-oppimis...

Further information: Board Member Maria Loima, 050 576 5073, maria.loima@hyy.fi

The Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY) nominates law student Tarik Ahsanullah for the Chair of the National Union of University Students in Finland (SYL) and student of social policy Henna Pursiainen for member of SYL’s Board for 2017.

In HYY’s Board, Ahsanullah has been in charge of educational policy and HYY Group’s corporate governance. Ahsanullah, 24 years, studies law for the fourth year and has held positions such as Chair of HYY Group’s Supervisory Board, treasurer of his faculty organisation Pykälä ry and member of the Faculty Council of the Faculty of Law.

‘The student movement has been criticised as a non-movement that finds problems but not solutions. This mental image must be changed! As future experts, we must be able to offer realistic, concrete and responsible solutions for how Finland remains as one of the world’s best countries to live and learn in, even after another hundred years’, Ahsanullah declares.

Pursiainen studies social policy and has long experience of working in student organisations. In HYY’s Board, Pursiainen, 24 years, has been in charge of urban affairs. During the spring, she managed to raise the annual construction goal for student apartments in Helsinki by a hundred apartments in cooperation with the Capital Region’s student unions’ World Student Capital network.

‘I’m not content with throwing a child into the water and watching whether it learns to swim. We must already have a plan of action for when the child learns to swim and needs a bigger pool. I want the student movement to think big but be consistent. We cannot afford to remain worrying at the poolside’, Pursiainen demands.

‘The student movement needs a leader with a new kind of drive, fresh ideas and the skills to inspire both Lapinrinne and the entire field to give all they have. I know Tarik is the best chair for our union. Henna has proven to be a persevering and open-minded person who takes charge of matters, successfully follows through on projects and has cooperation skills that I greatly value. All of us students will be able to sleep our nights in peace next year with Tarik and Henna taking care of our future’, Chair of the Board Jokimies praises.

SYL chooses its Board for 2017 in its Congress, held on 18–19 November 2016 at Korpilampi, Espoo. SYL looks after students’ interests on the national level, commenting on questions of educational policy, social policy and international affairs.

Further information:

Tarik Ahsanullah
tel. 050 595 0327
tarik.ahsanullah(a)hyy.fi

Henna Pursiainen
tel. 050 595 0318
henna.pursiainen(a)hyy.fi

Susanna Jokimies
tel. 050 543 9610
susanna.jokimies(a)hyy.fi

The Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY) is one of the founder communities of the Foundation for Student Housing in the Helsinki Region (Hoas) and a significant background figure. We are now looking for two actual members and two deputy members to Hoas Delegation for the term 2017-2018. 


The most important responsibility of Hoas Delegation is to supervise the activities of Hoas Board. If necessary, the delegation also appoints Hoas board members. The Hoas Delegation consists of 16 members and meets annually mainly in the spring and autumn meetings. In addition to statutory meetings, the delegation may be convened in order to brainstorm, spar and develop Hoas. HYY provides training and background support for the position. The membership in Hoas Delegation is a confidential post and the members are not paid for the post.

Applicants should have interest in student housing, motivation to act for the purpose of Hoas, which is to facilitate the students' housing situation, and the enthusiasm to develop Hoas. The knowledge of the operating environment of Hoas and the preparedness to cooperate with HYY will contribute to the successful management of the confidential post. In addition, living in Hoas housing, being active in residents' committees and experience in HYY's activities are considered advantages. The operating language of the Delegation is Finnish so fluency in the Finnish language is an asset.



Please deliver your application by email to kirjaamo@hyy.fi no later than 17 Oct 2016. The application should include the applicant's first names, surname, personal identity number, address, domicile, nationality, email address and telephone number. You may also attach your CV.

Further information: 


HYY's Housing Specialist Sofia Lindqvist, sofia.lindqvist@hyy.fi, 050 543 9605


Have you come across a brilliant lecturer, a dedicated supervisor or an otherwise excellent teacher who teaches in a language other than Finnish or Swedish? The Student Union rewards this year’s best teacher who teaches in a foreign language at the University of Helsinki. Send in your suggestions! A council of students will process all applications and make a suggestion to the Student Union board.  Special attention will be given to student-friendliness, expertise, active attitude towards developing, and giving and receiving constructive criticism.  This year we will also emphasize teaching methods that support students’ multicultural backgrounds and creating such an atmosphere where students from different cultural backgrounds can feel included.  The award will be presented at the anniversary of the Student Union on 26 November. The suggestions should be made by 20.10. at 12:00: https://elomake.helsinki.fi/lomakkeet/73450/lomake.html Any member or a member organisation of the academic community can make suggestions. The candidates must be in a teaching position at the University of Helsinki. The reasons should include examples of how the nominated person fulfills the criteria. In addition, the application may include comments by students and other members of the academic community or other suitable examples of the candidate's merits. You may download this information as attachments in the e-form. The criteria and nomination instructions for Magister Bonus are applicable, and can be viewed at:
Student-friendliness

In addition to a positive attitude, student-friendliness also includes the willingness to improve general well-being and communality. An attitude that appreciates students can be seen in counselling, lectures and in other activities.

Expertise

Expertise appears as the ability to highlight essential issues. A good teacher is enthusiastic about their field and also conveys one's enthuasism to students. A professional teacher is also a student's reliable guide to the scientific community. 

Active attitude towards development  
A good teacher actively develops both oneself as a teacher and one's teaching methods. A good teacher has a positive attitude towards the development of teaching and uses new teaching technology applications, electronic systems and information technology  in teaching. A good teacher works as a part of the scientific community and aims to develop teaching at one's department and the university.
Giving and receiving constructive feedback  
A good teacher knows how to collect feedback and also actively uses the feedback to develop teaching. A good teacher knows how to give constructive feedback to students and encourages students to an open dialogue.
For further information please contact board member Laura Luoto, 050 543 9612, laura.luoto(at)hyy.fi