AYY as an Organisation
AYY as an Organisation
Aalto University Student Union is the service and advocacy organisation for its approximately 14,000 members. The aim of all the student union activities is to allow the members to enjoy the best student life in the world.
Why Does the Student Union Exist?
The Student Union's purpose is to make the students’ voice heard at the university's decision-making. All university students should have a chance to influence matters related to their studies and daily lives. AYY’s goal is to influence the university and the surrounding society in a way that allows every Aalto student to enjoy the best student life in the world.
The Student Union’s existence is based on the Universities Act. The Student Union is an autonomous community, separate from the university, and its status is stipulated in the law.
The Universities Act defines a student union as follows:
The student union liaises with and on behalf of its members and promotes their societal, social and intellectual aspirations and those relating to studies and the status of students in society. The student union also participates in the implementation of the educational mission of the university, referred to in section 2, by preparing students for an active, informed and critical citizenship.
The Universities Act regulates the student union membership and grants student unions the right to collect a membership fee from their members. The Act also stipulates that a student union’s decision-making power is exercised by its Board and Representative Council.
What is AYY’s Structure Like?
The organisation of Aalto University Student Union is divided into three areas: services, advocacy and community. All three areas are supported by AYY’s real estate and communications sectors.
AYY’s operations are directed by the elected 45-member Representative Council, which decides on AYY’s policies and strategy, as well as the annual operational plan and budget, among other things. In addition, the Council appoints the Student Union’s Board, whose task is to ensure that activities are directed as set by the Council. The AYY Board participates in the daily operations of the Student Union.
The Representative Council represents all members of the Student Union and exercises the highest authority at AYY.
The Student Union’s administrative and executive power is held by the Board that is appointed by the Representative Council and whose term of office is one calendar year.
Some of AYY’s most significant member services are the student apartments built by the Student Union. AYY provides accommodation for more than 3200 students. The majority of these reasonably priced apartments are located on the Otaniemi campus.
In addition, AYY rents out several festive, sauna, meeting and sporting facilities at a student-friendly price. These facilities can be used by individuals as well as student associations. To the associations operating within it, AYY also offers IT services such as mailing lists and server space.
The advocacy work of AYY and the entire student movement has also created several other services for students. These include, for example, the apartments of the Foundation for Student Housing in the Helsinki Region, the services of the Finnish Student Health Service, Kela’s meal subsidy, various discounts on public transport (HSL and VR) as well as Frank and the discounts it offers.
The focus of AYY’s advocacy work stems from policies determined by the Representative Council. Based on these policies, the Student Union creates an even better ground and security for its members to succeed in their studies.
AYY’s advocacy work is targeted both at Aalto University and the City of Espoo. In addition, the Student Union influences national decision-making supported by the National Union of University Students in Finland (SYL).
Aalto has very diverse community activities that the Student Union wants to support and promote.
Every day, the Otaniemi student associations organise several events and AYY is involved in their execution. The Student Union itself organises numerous events each year, the largest of which is the Aalto Afterparty celebration, which is held annually at the beginning of the academic year. Many events, such as the delivery of the Flower Day message in May, have a history of decades.
AYY wants to promote a lively student culture through association activities. The Student Union supports the activities of associations with annual operating grants and organises opportunities for the associations to present their activities to members of the Aalto community through various events.
AYY’s finances include daily financial transactions as well as real estate and investment activities.
The mission of the Honorary Council is to help the Student Union to promote the societal, social and intellectual aspirations of its members and their aspirations regarding studying and the status of students in society.