Policy of the Student Union 2019
Jyväskylä University Student Union’s Policy Paper
Approved on 22 November 2018 at the Council meeting of the Student Union of the University of Jyväskylä.
The Student Union of the University of Jyväskylä (JYY) is a responsible builder of communality, a defender of equality and an active member of the society. These values, and the strategy of the Student Union, form the basis for this policy paper. This document describes the Student Union’s views on the society and includes the Student Union’s advocacy goals.
The policy paper will be submitted to the Council of Representative in the spring term. Council group leaders will meet and discuss what they want to change on the policy paper. Changes will be prepared between the group leaders. JYY’s experts will be consulted when updating the policy paper. In addition, if necessary, acute and timely updates to the policy paper may be made on the Board’s proposal.
If JYY is required to establish a policy on a current societal topic not specified in this policy paper, it is the Board of Executives’ responsibility to form the Student Union’s view on the matter under discussion.
University of Jyväskylä
Democracy at the University
The University of Jyväskylä must be an influential university with autonomous and democratic administration. These are not only the prestige of science but also shared values of the university community. Students are part of the scientific community and the University administration must apply a tripartite principle of governance in all its decision-making bodies. The University’s decision-making must be open, and the students’ point of view must be taken into account not only in the decision-making but also in the preparation phase.
- Tripartism will apply without exception in the University Collegium.
- Adequate student representation must be guaranteed by the tripartite principle.
- Faculty management will be democratically elected within the faculty.
- Recruitment of persons for management positions will be conducted in an open and democratic manner.
- Management teams of faculties and departments will have student representation.
- Representation of international students in the University’s working groups and governing bodies will be supported.
- All members of the university community must be equal in internal communications.
Development of education
Education at the University of Jyväskylä must be of high quality and based on scientific knowledge. Students must be given sufficient guidance throughout their studies in order to complete their studies. Education and study guidance must be developed continuously, and students must be actively involved in educational development. Student feedback must be systematically collected and utilized in the development of education. Education must be flexible and take into account students’ individual needs. The University of Jyväskylä must promote the effective employment of its students through working life contacts as well as by providing studies that support employment. In addition, the relevance of working life needs to be taken into account extensively in curricula and learning outcomes. The University must promote versatile and functional learning environments, both on campus and online. The assessment criteria of studies must be transparent and equal.
- The faculties will adhere to the principles of high-quality student guidance. The resources for guidance must be sufficient.
- International master’s degree programs must be of equal quality, and they will make use of the University’s strengths in order to be competitive and employable.
- Students will have the opportunity for sufficient guidance from the beginning of their studies. The guidance will support the identification of students’ own competence.
- Student mobility within the University is promoted and changing one’s subject and degree programme will be
- Student participation in the development of education will be supported by participatory working methods and open communication.
- Learning facilities on the campus will be Learning facilities will also be open even in the evening.
- Internships will be supported and may be included in the studies.
- Gaining experience outside the University, for example, through volunteering or organisation work will be recognised and integrated as part of the degree.
- Building a customised degree within the University will be
- The University will offer alternative and varied modes of study in all subjects, taking into account individual needs and diverse life situations.
- The University will offer the opportunity to do exams anonymously where applicable.
- Students must be given feedback also during the course in addition to the course grades.
- The funding and human resources for development of education must be sufficient.
- The voice of both international and Finnish students must be heard in the development of education.
- The University will increase student interaction between different areas and levels of education.
The University of Jyväskylä must conduct significant research and provide high-quality education in both Finnish and English. University communication must be linguistically accessible, and the needs of non-Finnish-speaking students must be taken into account. International students have a similar, if not more extensive, thirst for knowledge than Finnish students. Therefore, all materials for international students must also be available in English.
- The University will continue to conduct high-quality research in Finnish, strengthening the position of Finnish as a language of science.
- The University will communicate at least in Finnish and English, and it will also reach students who do not speak Finnish.
- The teaching of the Finnish language to international students must be of high quality and easily accessible.
- The English language education must be of high quality. There will be no significant shortcomings in the language skills of teachers which weaken the quality of teaching or put international students at an unequal position.
- Student guidance will always take into account the linguistic needs of students.
Internships abroad and internationalisation at home
Every student must have an opportunity to internationalisation during their studies, and this must be taken into account in the curricula. Internship abroad is not the only option. Internationalisation within the home country ensures that all students are prepared to work in an international environment after graduation. Internationalisation at home includes, for example, an international environment, opportunities to study in a foreign language, opportunities to study foreign languages, and tutoring international students.
- The University will offer high-quality, sufficient and personalised guidance in planning a mobility period and supports the exchange, for example, financially and by providing a departure orientation for outgoing exchange student.
- The transfer of exchange studies must be smooth.
- The University will invest in foreign language teaching.
- The curricula will enable internationalisation at home and abroad. Study programmes will allow students to study abroad. Sufficient information will be available about the opportunities for mobility periods at home and abroad.
- Different ways to internationalise at home will be The University staff will have enough information of the various forms of internationalisation at home.
- Increasing cooperation between Finnish and English study programmes. Students studying in Finnish study programmes will have the opportunity to internationalise at home by attending courses that are part of international study programmes.
National Higher Education Policy
Universities have an important role in maintaining and developing research, education and science. The level of funding for universities must be increased in order to guarantee a high level of quality education. University funding must be based primarily on public funding, and the funding must be transparent, predictable and rewarding in terms of quality of education. Education funding must be based primarily on the core funding of the funding model, rather than on the strategies, in order to guarantee stable core funding for education.
- The university index (yliopistoindeksi) will be restored.
- The university funding model will be updated to increase the importance of quality education and quality employment measures.
- Universities will receive funding on the basis of completed credits rather than completed degrees.
- Supporting internationalisation will be taken into account in the funding model.
Education must be free of charge on all levels so that everyone will have the opportunity for education, regardless of their background or the number and level of prior degrees.
- The law concerning tuition fees for students arriving from countries outside the EU and EEA must be revoked.
- Commissioned training that leads to a degree must not be the only answer to the growing needs for continuing education and lifelong learning.
The profiling of universities must respect the autonomy of universities. All universities must grant the right to complete both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. The primary task of universities must not be to respond to the needs of the business industries. Finnish higher education institutions must form a nationwide comprehensive unit that is internationally competitive.
- The number of universities will not be reduced.
- Profiling will not be emphasized at the expense of multidisciplinary.
Applying for higher education
Student selection practices must maintain and promote the equality and accessibility of education. Universities must retain the autonomy over selecting their students according to the methods and criteria they see fit, taking into account the specific features of study programmes. Success in secondary education or in the Finnish Matriculation Examination alone must not determine access to higher education studies. Flexible and proactive study guidance can help to apply for studies and find the right place to study already at the application phase. Open university must not become a paid shortcut to higher education studies, and access to university through open university must continue to be limited by sufficiently small quotas.
- The first timers’ quota must be revoked.
- Universities must retain the autonomy over selecting their students according to the methods and criteria they see fit. The ministry will revoke certificate-based admissions as the main route to higher education studies.
- Sector relevant aptitude tests will be maintained.
- JYY does not promote the right for an open university to grant degrees if they remain subject to a charge.
- The open university route will be primarily for applicants who are not eligible to apply for higher education.
- The open university route quotas should not be significantly increased if open universities remain subject to a charge.
- Universities will provide guidance to potential students already in the application phase.
Structure of the higher education system and university autonomy
The Student Union promotes the separation of universities from universities of applied sciences, as the two have clearly separate tasks. Cooperation of higher education institutions is promoted mainly through the organisation of education, rather than by combining institutions and structures. Universities must retain the autonomy over, for example, internal financing according to the model of funding they see fit.
- The separation of universities from universities of applied sciences must be retained.
- The cooperation between higher education institutions will focus on the organisation of education.
- Universities will have internal funding models and they take into account the development of education.
Digitalisation of education
Digitalisation enables flexible cooperation between higher education institutions in the provision of education, and creates the means for time and place independent studying. However, the level of pedagogy must not fall as a result of educational cooperation. Cooperation between higher education institutions can be based on national subject-specific courses and units, provided they are pedagogically sound and of high quality. Digitalisation can also improve the opportunities for students in secondary education to familiarise themselves with higher education studies. In this way, the transition from secondary education to higher education can be streamlined and the education pathway unified. Digitalisation can also improve the accessibility of study guidance.
- Education must not be digitalised at the expense of pedagogy, but priority must be given to the effectiveness of pedagogical solutions.
- The primary opportunities for digitalisation are the basic studies and the provision of higher education courses and units to students in secondary education.
International Higher Education Policy and Internationalisation
The status of Finland and Jyväskylä in international scientific networks
The University of Jyväskylä must be an influential operator in the international scientific community. Student mobility and high-quality education guarantee the attractiveness of the University of Jyväskylä on the field of international higher education. The University of Jyväskylä must invest in developing the working life skills and contacts of international students. It is in the interest of Finland as a whole that international students find employment in Finland after graduation. The University of Jyväskylä must also make significant research in languages other than Finnish. The University must take its share of global responsibility by actively participating in the debate in international crisis situations and by educating people to be humane and societally active.
- The University of Jyväskylä will invest in student mobility and it will be taken into account in the internal funding model.
- International students’ residence permit must be granted to cover the entire duration of their degree programmes. The possibility of renewing the residence permit must not be tied to the number of ECTS credits.
- Universities and the society will support the employment of international students. The employment of international students will be promoted, for example, through projects and courses that support the accumulation of work experience.
- In order to promote integration and employment, international students must be able to become familiar with local employers and job search already during their studies.
- To promote integration, the University must offer comprehensive education in the Finnish language and culture, which will also support the transition to working life.
- International degree programmes will be designed to allow students to complete a sufficient number of ECTS credits to renew their residence permit and retain scholarship. In addition, courses will be offered as evenly as possible throughout the academic year, including the summer term.
- International master’s programmes will be designed to attract both Finnish and international students.
International structural development and globalisation of education
Finland must promote the goals of the Bologna Process and actively contribute to the creation of a European education area. As a matter of principle, science and making science must always be transparent. Finland must be a pioneer in publishing transparent scientific knowledge globally.
- European bachelor’s and master’s degrees will be recognised throughout Europe.
- Finland will play an active role in realising the goals of the Bologna Process.
- Promoting the globalisation of education and international mobility will be one of the core values of the Finnish universities.
JYY wants to contribute to and promote the Finnish welfare state, global justice and an equal future. In addition to the principles of ecological and social sustainability, decision-making must be based on scientific knowledge. Sustainable development must be taken into account in all decision-making. For the purposes of this document, sustainable development is defined as a socially and environmentally sustainable way of operating that already pursues and simultaneously develops sustainability.
The Finnish welfare state is a prerequisite for a competent, healthy and prosperous future. Justice between generations must be promoted. Younger and future generations must have access to inclusion, education, employment, livelihoods, a healthy living environment and pensions. Young people must be involved in decision-making and must also be listened to. Young people need to be educated for active citizenship. In order to secure and develop Finnish competence and to prevent exclusion, general quality education must be invested at all levels, from early childhood education onwards. Finland must promote free movement and global responsibility in international arenas.
- Basic education resources will be secured.
- Secondary education will be genuinely free, of high quality, and promote general knowledge.
- All young people who have completed their primary education will have access to secondary education.
- School and study facilities will be safe, healthy and accessible.
- Libraries are important educators and promoters of well-being of the nation, and their operations will be secured. Libraries should better serve students, for example, by improving the availability of academic course literature and by providing study facilities.
Stable and adequate livelihood is important for students, both for the well-being and the ability to study. Study grant must be big enough to lead a decent life and to enable full-time study in a variety of situations and without having to raise a loan or work. Sufficient study grant makes it possible to pursue higher education from any financial point of view. Study grant is one form of social security and should be seen as such. Students must be able to make mistakes, make wrong choices, and succeed in versatile and also in economically challenging situations. The study grant, together with the housing supplement, must be sufficient, regardless of the place of residence and the type of residence. Students must have the right to their own income. Therefore, the income of roommates should not affect student’s housing benefits. In the long term, JYY wants Finland to implement basic income or other universal and individual social security coverage. Basic income will address the changing nature of work where more and more people of working age earn their living from short-term employment.
- The amount of study grant will be raised and, together with the housing supplement, will be big enough for living. The students’ minimum income will not be covered with a student loan, but the student loan can enable students to raise their standard of living.
- The study grant will be tied to the index.
- The number of months of financial aid will be increased so that, for example, summer studies do not cause the months of financial aid to end. There are better ways to encourage students to graduate faster, such as investing in study guidance and flexible studying opportunities.
- Financial aids for bachelor’s and master’s degrees will be combined.
- A student may use a bachelor’s degree’s study grant for a master’s degree, even if the student has completed their bachelor’s degree before all the months of financial aid have ended.
- It must be possible to get additional months of financial aid for a new degree or a new course of study by applying.
- The requirement to pay back overpaid study grant plus interest due to exceeding the annual income limit will be revoked.
- A student must be given plenty of time to pay back financial aid.
- The aid months that Kela (The Social Insurance Institution of Finland) requires students to pay back due to exceeding the annual income limit may be reused later.
- The minimum requirement of completing at least 20 credits in each academic year must be revoked.
- Informing about not making sufficient study progress will be made easier, and Kela may be notified of the slowing down of study progress even before Kela requests for information. Students will be able to inform Kela in advance and gain assurance of livelihood in advance. For example, Kela’s website should have a study progress information form for students.
- There will be no increase in the minimum monthly requirement for progress for the study grant.
- Study grant will be transferred from the Ministry of Education and Culture to the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health. In the future, study grant will be treated as part of social security. Study grant will be included in the reforming of social security.
- Students’ housing supplement must be individual. At least for the students studying full-time, the transition to individual housing supplement will be made.
- Housing supplement will allow students to live together with family and friends without reducing anyone’s allowances. The income of roommates should not affect individual housing benefits.
- Interpretation of partnership will be based on the applicant’s own declaration.
- The form of lease agreement will not reduce the amount of housing supplement.
- Social assistance will be applicant-specific benefit. Unmarried couple will not be liable to provide each other with maintenance.
- Student loan will not be considered as income in the income statement.
- If student loan will be considered as income in the income statement, the loan will be considered as income only for the month for which the loan is granted.
- Child benefit or income of a minor will not be considered as income when granting social assistance.
- Reducing social assistance bureaucracy.
Students with family
- Students with family must also be able to study full-time and get a decent income. Provider supplement to the study grant will be raised.
- Family leave will be reformed to promote the equal status, parenthood and career advancement of parents of same-sex, different gender or of different income. Family leave will be divided into three equally long parts of which one is assigned to each parent and the third part can be divided between the parents in the manner chosen by them.
- Students’ transition to sickness allowance will be smoothed. Part-time study will be possible during illness.
- The level of students’ sickness allowance will be raised.
Retraining to learn a new occupation
- Retraining will be economically possible even if the previous occupation does not allow saving money or working part-time in order to finance the studies.
- In the long term, a gratuitous basic income or other universal and individual social security coverage will be paid for all permanent residents of Finland over the age of 18.
- Meal subsidy for higher education students will continue to provide affordable and healthy food for students.
- The restriction on meal subsidy for one meal per day will be removed.
It is important to promote the overall wellbeing of students and to create optimal conditions for studying. Social networks, hobbies, sports and culture are essential elements in building student wellbeing. International students need to be considered as part of the community, but also as a special group that needs to be taken into account in the planning and evaluation of student support services. Physical and mental health are important for learning and wellbeing. More resources are needed to prevent and address mental health problems, as one-third of students suffer from mental health problems. Only one-third of higher education students exercise enough. Work must be done to increase students’ physical activity.
- Long-term sitting will be reduced in teaching facilities and practices.
- Stand-up workstations and exercise balls will be added to study areas, and lecture halls will enable stretching one’s legs during lectures.
- Movement and gymnastic exercises will be added to the teaching. Cultural change to stop sitting will be strongly promoted through campaigns, teacher training and the development of new procedures.
- Academic sports fees will be kept to a minimum. Students should have the opportunity, in addition to current free weeks of the University Sports, for longer, free trial period in order to start exercising. These must take place without compromising on the quality of the academic sports.
- Every student will have the opportunity to enjoy a variety of free and regular sports activities.
- Associations will be offered free sports turns to organise their own sports activities.
- The sport course with credits is an important part of low-threshold options of the academic sports and it must be preserved in the future.
- Student fees for sports services organised by the city will be kept to a minimum. In particular, student prices for swimming halls will be reduced.
Culture and coming together
- Communality and people coming together will be supported. Studies support students’ social relations. International students will be recognised as part of the university community and receive special attention.
- Student housing will promote communal living and develop communal facilities and habits that are meaningful and easily accessible to students.
- The campus will have facilities for students to relax and unwind. The campus will have both lush green areas and peaceful study and relaxation areas to be together and alone. The University will provide students with facilities for common use, events and hanging out.
- The University and the city will support and promote cultural activities. Cultural services should be seen as a promoter of wellbeing just as sports services are. Arts experts will be supported just as much as hobbyists.
- The city will also support small cultural events by providing facilities, guidance and financial support to enable citizens of Jyväskylä to organise and participate in a variety of cultural events.
- Student healthcare will continue to be provided by the Finnish Student Health Service and sufficient resources will be guaranteed.
- Students will have smooth access to primary health care and specialised health care when needed. Primary health care will be free and specialised health care will be inexpensive. Adequate resources for public health care, both general and specialised, will be guaranteed and quality services will be ensured.
- International students will have smooth access to basic services, including mental health services. Basic services will be of high quality, service guidance will be available also in English, and medical staff will have sufficient English language skills.
- FSHS, the Student Union and the University will cooperate in student healthcare services.
- Health care must be respectful of bodily autonomy and understand gender and sexual diversity.
- Medical data will transfer quickly and easily between different health services.
- Dental care will be guaranteed sufficient resources for prevention.
- Access to tests for finding STDs will be quick and easy.
- Free contraception must be offered to everyone under 25 years of age and to all students.
- The University’s indoor air quality problems must be addressed. Facilities must be healthy.
- The smoke-free campus will continue to be developed.
- Ways to address alcohol and drug problems will be developed and effective means for it must be available. Help for substance abuse problems must be available free of stigma.
Mental health services
- Investing in low-threshold student wellbeing services. The University’s wellbeing services, such as the Goodie wellbeing advisers, the Student Compass, University Chaplains and the Student Life concept will be developed to reach everyone in need of help and support. Students need to know that the wellbeing services are not meant just for study concerns.
- The University’s wellbeing services must employ a person whose job description consists of mentoring, advising and supporting students. Distance makes it easy for many to get in touch, and that the job is full-time creates confidence in managing varying situations.
- The University of Jyväskylä will have employees who provide professional support and guidance to students when the Goodie wellbeing advisers are inadequate or the wrong place to contact.
- The University will prepare a wellbeing policy program for students.
- A low-threshold mental health emergency will be available in Jyväskylä, with 24 hour acute care and referral to treatment.
- Student access to mental health services will be quick and smooth throughout the year.
- Kela’s rehabilitative psychotherapy must be well resourced now and in the future.
- The amount of money young people and students must pay in Kela’s rehabilitative psychotherapy will be reduced.
- Professional support and assistance will be available for those who have experienced violence and sexual violence. Access to support will be smooth, low-threshold and free from stigmas.
Every person, regardless of their background, must have the opportunity to live an equal and dignified life, to have well-being and to be a part of the society. Everyone should be able to be seen, heard and noticed. JYY wants to be a part in building a society where all kinds of people can study and live a normal life free from discrimination and stigmas.
- Enhancing the University staff’s knowledge and understanding about the diversity of gender and sexuality.
- Supporting accessibility and inclusion. Studies and ordinary student life must be accessible to every student, regardless of disabilities, illnesses, mental health problems, or other factors affecting individuals’ functional abilities.
- The University will have clear guidelines and principles on accessibility issues. Accessibility of university studies will be systematically developed. The University staff and students will be better aware of the possibilities of accessible education at the University. In addition, assistance and support will be available on a consistent basis, regardless of which faculty or person is asked to help.
- Discrimination and bullying will not be tolerated, and the help must be preventative.
- The University will have a clear set of practices for intervening in harassment, discrimination and racism. Students and staff will be familiar with the practices.
- The University will work to prevent loneliness, and the effectiveness of practices will be
- Every student must have the opportunity to complete their studies despite of indoor air quality problems. The University will have a clear policy that applies in all cases.
- Gender-neutral toilets will be available throughout the campus, and there will also be gender-neutral changing rooms. Gender-neutral toilets and changing rooms will also be available in other public facilities.
- Mental health problems often have a stigma attached and those affected may even be discriminated against. The portrayal of mental illness in the society must be changed.
Everyone has an equal right to control their own body and life
Everyone must have control over their own bodies and lives. The law must treat people equally, regardless of gender and gender identity, while respecting human rights.
- Finland will adopt the Trans Act that is in line with the recommendations of the Finnish association for transgender and intersex rights (Trasek).
- Finland will legally recognise third gender classifications. The indicator indicating the individual’s gender in personal identity codes will be removed.
- Conscription in Finland will become gender neutral.
- It will be a sufficient reason for abortion if a woman decides to ask for an abortion before the twelfth week of pregnancy.
- Finland must ratify the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) “Convention No. 169”, approved in 1989.
- The definition of rape in Finnish law will be based on lack of consent.
Central Finland and Jyväskylä need to invest boldly in the future and opportunities. The region needs to invest in the wellbeing of its citizens, in employment, in the development of business, and in the reducing of inequality. The University must be an important regional educator in Central Finland, as well as a provider of vitality and development. Jyväskylä must also attract international students. The city must increase communication in English.
Work and vitality
It is a prerequisite for the vitality of Jyväskylä and the entire region of Central Finland to be able to guarantee versatile and socially and ecologically sustainable services for all. It is in the interest of both the region and the University students that there are jobs and internships for higher education students in Central Finland. Transport connections from Central Finland to other growth points are important to the vitality and development of the region.
- Ways to better utilise the skills of university-educated citizens will be developed in Central Finland. Industrial policy will focus on increasing the number of jobs requiring higher education.
- Attracting state administration and EU offices to Jyväskylä. By setting up state and EU offices around Finland, regional vitality will be supported, and jobs will be provided to higher education graduates. Knowledge clusters may also be organised around the offices, bringing in talented people and creating jobs.
- Working life services will offer opportunities for networking and developing business ideas. Those who are interested in entrepreneurship should have natural opportunities and places to meet and develop business ideas, rather than, for example, courses organised by the TE Services.
- TE Services will promote cooperative business activities as a form of self-employment.
- Access to support services for entrepreneurs will be easy.
- Working life services and other basic services will be available also in English.
- Transport services to and within Central Finland will be good and smooth. The double-track railway to Tampere and faster rail link to Helsinki will be important in the future.
Vibrant city, vibrant citizens
- Jyväskylä will develop wellbeing services and invest in preventative health services.
- Developing the campus area. The University will be actively considered in land use planning as an important part of the inner city of Jyväskylä.
- A vibrant, versatile city centre is important. It needs to be developed.
- Services will be available throughout the city.
- Action must be taken immediately to combat regional inequalities. Land use planning, construction, infrastructure and service locating will actively combat regional inequalities.
- The city will have open and free spaces for citizens, organisations and groups to use. The city will also have free space for urban farming.
- More inclusive democracy! New ways to involve citizens in city development and decision-making will be developed in Jyväskylä and Central Finland.
- Introducing participatory budgeting and financing project developed by citizens.
- The city will have enough public toilets, garbage bins and waste sorting stations.
Environmentally responsible Jyväskylä
The city of Jyväskylä must be a forerunner in building ecological urban environment. In addition to a sustainable urban structure, nature and biodiversity must also be protected and the citizens’ access to nature promoted.
- Sustainability will be emphasised in planning and construction. When designing additional construction and new services, the environmental aspect will be taken into account both in the construction process itself and in the development of sustainable urban environment. The environmental aspect will also be taken into account in the development of a sustainable lifestyle for the citizens.
- Enhancing the wellbeing of nature must be taken into account in urban planning. The city will preserve areas of pristine forests for the sake of the citizens and the nature itself. Green areas and nearby forests will be invested in everywhere in the city.
- Investing in recycling. Recycling points for plastic will be found all over the city, including the city centre and student housing centres. Recycling points for electronic waste will also be reached without a car. Popular public spaces will invest in sorting. Citizens will be provided with information on recycling and its importance, for example, through campaigns.
- Jyväskylä will have to significantly reduce the share of peat in its energy production and, in the 2020s, will have to completely cut peat in its energy production without replacing it with wood or fossil fuels.
- Jyväskylä’s water bodies will be protected from oil, waste and debris.
- Reducing the amount of food waste in the city’s facilities and schools. The amount of food waste in institutional kitchens will be addressed and the excess food will be utilised as efficiently as possible, even if it does not generate revenue.
- The city’s food services will concentrate on ecologically sustainable food, increase the amount of vegetarian food served and favour sustainable, locally produced, seasonal food. The food will be traceable.
- In Jyväskylä’s transportation planning, downtown motoring will be reduced, and the city centre’s gyratory traffic will be improved.
- Reducing the student bus ticket fares, and introducing free public transport, at least for the winter months.
- Jyväskylä will investigate the acquisition of electric busses for the busiest routes.
- Improving night shifts of public transport in Jyväskylä.
- Improving bus accessibility to all campuses. Seminaarinkatu for busses! Lecture schedules will be taken into account when planning bus schedules. Busses should stay on schedule better.
- Improving parking facilities located close to public transport stops and stations. For example, bus access to the downtown area will be made easier by lowering fares and locating park and rides on the outer edges of the city.
- Parking facilities for bicycles near public transportation hubs will be developed and bicycle racks will be built near bus stops to encourage citizens to move smoothly by bikes and busses.
- Promoting cycling in Jyväskylä. The city’s cycling promotion program will be promoted swiftly and ambitiously.
- Winter maintenance of sidewalks and bicycle paths (ploughing, prevention of slipperiness, street cleaning) must be improved in order to allow winter cycling.
- Developing a functional, possibly electric, city bike system.
- Environmental responsibility must be taken into account in all large public events in Jyväskylä.
- The city’s elementary schools’ curricula will place emphasis on adopting a sustainable lifestyle and on environmental education.
After the transfer of students to the general housing allowance in the 2017–2018 academic year, the rental costs have increased, but the average rent after housing supplement has decreased slightly. According to Kela’s report, in the municipality category III, which includes Jyväskylä, students had to pay an average of 163 euros of their rent after housing supplement. With a study grant of 250 euros, housing takes an average of 65 percent. Affordable student housing is a great way to prevent student poverty. Student housing must be publicly supported. Sufficient amount of student apartments must be guaranteed in order to provide as many students as possible with affordable and suitable homes. Student housing should adapt to the wishes and needs of students. Student housing should be located close to higher education institutions and services. For both economic and ecological reasons, communal living should be encouraged. KOAS must investigate students’ housing needs and wishes, and boldly try different and new forms communal living. Communal living must be economically attractive and profitable.
Happy home for everyone
Student apartments are homes too. It is important to ensure that every student has a home that is affordable, but also a safe and comfortable place to study, rest and spend everyday life.
- Accessibility, healthiness and comfort will always be taken into account in the construction phase. Accessibility and comfort will also be taken into account in courtyards and common areas.
- Shared apartments and family apartments will be designed and built to offer changeability for different housing purposes.
- Shared student apartments will not be automatically distributed according to gender. The applicant must be able to choose whether to apply for a gender-neutral apartment or a same-sex apartment.
- An applicant must the right to gender self-identification.
- Students must be able to track their own situation during the student housing application process.
- Tenant democracy will be The Tenant’s Committee will be offered a real opportunity to improve the services and quality of life at the Student Village. The Tenant’s Committee will be supported financially and through training.
- A flat mate search will be launched. If so desired, a student can find a suitable flat mate through the service.
- Sufficient and affordable student apartments and other kinds of apartments will be available for students with family throughout the city, including the downtown area.
- Enough furnished apartments will be available for international students.
- The planning of residential areas will take into account the versatility of services and demographics, as well as opportunities for shared use, for example, of cars and sports facilities.
Environmental impact of housing
The carbon footprint of housing is one of the biggest contributors to individual emissions. Students often live in small sized apartments, which is both inexpensive and ecological. Encouraging communal living is also a good way to reduce the environmental impact of housing.
- Ecological point of view must be considered in all construction phases. Sustainability will be emphasised already during the competitive tendering. Planning of new buildings, renovation projects and planning of areas will take into account energy efficiency and set specific targets for reducing the carbon footprint.
- EKOenergy certified eco-electricity will be used in student apartments.
- Student apartments will have good opportunities to recycle both in the apartments and at recycling points. Digital services will be developed to promote the reusing and recycling of goods.
- Shared indoor and outdoor areas for studying and hanging out will be developed. Study area downstairs, sauna in one’s own or in the neighbouring house and bookable club rooms bring variety even to the smallest of student apartments.
- New ways of the sharing economy will be boldly experimented with in student apartments. There is a need to developed ways in which, for example, a vacuum cleaner, cargo bike and electric mixer could be available for tenants to book online, just like a laundry room and club room.
- Tenants must be able to monitor their own energy and water consumption.
- There will be enough locked bicycle storage facilities and bicycle racks that allow to lock the frame to the rack.
- Heated bicycle storage facilities will be built.
Climate change is one of the greatest threats facing younger generations. How we succeed in tackling climate change in the years to come will strongly determine the future of younger generations. JYY calls for significant action to stop climate change. Change must take place at both the societal and the individual level. In the future, ecologically sustainable life must be natural and easy for everyone. JYY is committed to responsible and sustainable development in its operations. We expect the same from the society and our partners.
Climate responsible Finland
Finland must bear its responsibility for tackling climate change and take effective action. Ecologically unsustainable economic growth must not be supported and boosted, but economic policy must act within the limits of the Earth’s ecological capacity and natural resources. JYY promotes a sustainable lifestyle. It is imperative to accept that the current Western lifestyle is not ecologically sustainable.
- Finland will commit to the goals of the Paris Agreement.
- Finland and Jyväskylä will be carbon neutral by 2030. Renewable energy is promoted in energy production.
- Renewable energy needs will be primarily met by something else than carbon sink biomass.
- The construction of new nuclear power plants should not be a priority for future energy production. However, the maintenance and repair of old reactors is allowed, and the safe operation of nuclear power plants and the safe disposal of nuclear waste are promoted.
- Sustainable forest management practices and forest regeneration will be promoted.
- Kela’s meal subsidy must encourage restaurants to offer climate-friendly meals.
- Air travel will be restricted, among other things, by means of taxation.
- Rail transport will be developed as it is a safe and ecological way of transporting both goods and people.
- Public transport will be favoured, and measures will be taken to reduce motoring. Public transport will be generously developed and supported with tax revenue, so that using public transport will be inexpensive and more profitable than private motoring.
Campus and the University
The University must take responsibility and set an example for tackling climate change. Scientific research should look for solutions to tackle climate change, but we must also look at our own concrete actions.
- Cycling paths on and off campus will be streamlined and developed.
- Bicycle racks that enable frame locking will be added to the campus, and there will be enough parking spaces for bicycles around the campus.
- The University will encourage staff to move sustainably, for example, by encouraging cycling and supporting bus travel.
- The University will use geothermal and solar energy wherever possible. The electricity purchased from outside will be EKOenergy certified eco-electricity.
- Purchases will pay attention to the environmental impact of the product throughout its whole life-cycle.
- The University will not invest in fossil fuels.
- Courses can be run without paper prints unless there is a specific pedagogical basis to use them.
JYY is committed to promoting social and environmental responsibility and expects other social actors to do the same. As one of the richest countries in the world, Finland has a duty to take global responsibility and to treat others fairly, not just for its own economic interests. We must adapt to the changes brought about by climate change, and we must also take global responsibility in this process. Finland must respect the human rights of all people. Racisms must be condemned.
- Finland will actively work to reduce global inequality.
- Pacifism and unarmed conflict resolution will be promoted.
- Finland must set goals on how it will raise the share of funding for development cooperation to 0.7% of its GDP. At least 0.2 per cent of GDP will be targeted to the most vulnerable.
- In development cooperation, Finland’s special expertise in the field of education will be utilised to improve education and to tackle the crisis in learning.
- Finland and the EU will share their responsibility for helping refugees. Climate refugee status will be recognised by law in the European Union and Finland.
- Immigrant inclusion will be supported.
- Access to higher education for refugees and immigrants will be improved.
- Basic necessities will be guaranteed for everyone in Finland.
- Agricultural production will be managed in an environmentally sustainable manner.
- Fur farming will be banned internationally.
- Both the University of Jyväskylä and the city of Jyväskylä will pay attention to responsibility in their procurements and will, for example, avoid child labour, and favour Fair Trade in their procurements.
- The contents of sustainable development and global education will be incorporated into university studies wherever appropriate, irrespective of the field of study.
- When selecting its service providers, partners and investment targets, the University will take into full account the potential partner’s activities. Cooperation will be made only with responsible companies and communities. The arms trade, tobacco industry, neo-colonial practices, discrimination, and the use of child labour are unsuitable activities for the partners of the University.
- The University will actively promote religious freedom. The University has a quiet place to retreat to on campus to support mental well-being.