What can I do in the student union?
Aalto University Student Union operates largely on a voluntary basis. With the work of our volunteers, the student union is able to organise events for our members and oversee their interests in the most effective manner.
If you are interested, there are many ways to join in: some are involved in sections operating under AYY year after year, some participate once in organising an event, and some stand for election in AYY's Representative Council elections. You can participate in the student union activities little by little or even turn it into a profession for yourself.
Check out the possibilities below and see if you can find a suitable way to join in!
The easiest way to participate in the student union activities is to attend the student union events – which is easily done, given that there is always something happening in the Aalto community! The events of Aalto University Student Union and its sections are open to all members of the Aalto community, and most of the events are free to attend.
Each year in Otaniemi, we have Wappu celebrations, hand over the Flower Day message to a current decision-maker, celebrate the tradition week of technical students and try to survive a zombie invasion in the game of Humans vs Zombies. The event calendar also includes several student parties and, of course, the anniversary celebrations in May, to which all AYY members are welcome to celebrate the student union.
In addition to AYY, the associations within the Aalto community continuously organise various events for their own members and the entire Aalto community.
You can browse the upcoming events of the Aalto community in AYY’s event calendar.
Volunteer work and sections
The core of AYY’s volunteer activities are the sections operating in connection with the Student Union: Aalto Community Section Aava, Campus Section, Museum Section, Teekkari Section and EduJory. All sections have numerous volunteer tasks where you can apply and develop your own skills.
Among other things, the sections produce the majority of the student union’s cultural and sports events, participate in communications and event marketing and work in sales positions in the Corporate Relations Section. In return for their hard work, the section members have a direct impact on what the student union does and what its activities look like in the Aalto community and beyond. Rumour has it that it's also fun to be involved in the sections and it's easy to make new friends…
The sections are recruiting new volunteers every autumn. An exception is the Museum Section in charge of the Museum of Student Life, that you can apply to join at any time of the year.
Other volunteer work
In addition to sections, there are also other ways to volunteer in AYY. Every year, volunteers are needed to help organise various events, and there is a need for various skills, from graphic design to security officer duties.
Follow AYY’s weekly newsletter and social media channels to hear about new volunteer recruitments!
There are volunteer positions available from event organising to campus development and student advocacy, not forgetting positions in the Board and the Representative Council.
There are more than 200 student associations in Aalto, which organise a wide range of events and other activities for members of the Aalto community. Associations do not operate under AYY, but they collaborate closely with the student union.
Association activities become familiar to many through their own subject organisation or guild, but AYY’s list of associations also includes many associations focused on various hobbies and societal impact, for example. Associations operate on a voluntary basis, providing numerous opportunities for participation and influence.
Learn more about the associations through the list of associations.
Representative Council and Board
The easiest way to impact the student union matters is to vote in AYY’s Representative Council elections! The Representative Council exercises the highest decision-making power at the student union. The term of office of the Representative Council is two years, which means that every two years all members of the student union have the opportunity to both vote and stand for election in the Representative Council elections.
A ten-member Board, elected by the Representative Council, exercises AYY's administrative and executive powers. The Board also oversees the daily operations and represents the student union beyond the community. The board members change annually, and all members of the student union who are willing to contribute to the Aalto community can apply for the position.
The Representative Council represents all members of the student union and holds the highest authority within 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.
Through the student union, you can influence teaching at Aalto in many ways.
All students interested in student advocacy are welcome to attend the study council meetings organised by AYY. The best way to find out when these meetings are held is to follow the AYY Advocacy Facebook group and Telegram channel. The Study Council consists of the persons in charge of studies from subject organisations and guilds, so you can also influence Aalto's education policy through association activities.
You can have a broader impact on Aalto education by becoming a student representative in administration. According to the Universities Act, there must be student representatives in university administration. These representatives, also known as hallopeds, use the voice of students on university committees, councils and working groups. Student representatives of each Aalto School are involved in AYY’s Advocacy Management Team.