Fanni's May Day speech

Aalto University Student Union's Chair of the Board Fanni Mattsson held AYY's May Day Speech at Ullanlinnanmäki on 1 May 2024.
Fanni Matsson Ullanlinnanmäellä 1.5.2024

Greetings from Otaniemi! Once again, it feels incredible to celebrate May Day, the celebration of workers and students!

However, this spring hasn’t been just about celebration; we have also witnessed the harsh blows of the current Finnish Government on both groups. The trade union movement has been in conflict with the government, while students have voiced their frustration over cuts to the housing allowance, for example. Today, we celebrate, but we’re also concerned about the future prospects of workers and students.

I’m also very concerned about the Government's immigration policies. We most definitely need more international people in Finland. The current policies are not appealing to people outside Finland, quite the contrary. This must end, and Finland must become more welcoming to people from abroad.

My university, Aalto, is the most international university in Finland. Aalto community and its volunteers have a huge responsibility in getting international students integrated into our society.

Throughout my student years, I’ve learned the immense importance of volunteering, both in terms of studies and the future. Engaging in volunteer work provides experience and networks that will take you a long way. I fear that the cuts promoted by the Government will harm our diverse student culture, as the way things are going, students can no longer afford to volunteer when their livelihoods are at stake.

Look at Wappu, for instance: the majority of the tents here on Ullanlinnanmäki are voluntarily hosted by active students. This requires planning, effort, and time from all of them.

Therefore, let’s take care of the wellbeing and livelihood of students to ensure that we will continue to have such a wonderful and amazing Wappu!

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