Student Union and student associations
The Student Union of Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences (SAMO) is an organisation that supervises the interests of students and offers services. SAMO works in close co-operation with the staff of Seinäjoki UAS and the student associations in the university's various schools. The organisation also maintains relations with the business world and student unions in other universities of applied sciences, as well as with municipal and governmental administration. SAMO is a member of the Union of Students in Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences, SAMOK ry and therefore also a member of Finnish Student Sports Federation (OLL).
The activities carried out by SAMO are in accordance with Section 42a of the Polytechnic Act (413/2005). The student union's statutory duty is to function as a bond between members and to promote their societal, social, mental educational endeavours as well as their status as students in society. Furthermore, it is the duty of the student union to choose student representatives for the UAS Board and other multi-member bodies and to participate in other UAS activities.
All UAS students studying for a degree are welcome to join SAMO; it merely requires the filling out of the membership application, either online or o paper, and paying of the membership fee. At the moment, SAMO has approximately 2500 members. For more detailed instructions, see http://www.samo.fi/inenglish.
Membership fees for new members for the 2014-2015 academic year:
- 4-yr. membership: 95,10 euros for the entire period of the degree programme (240 cr)
- 3,5-yr. membership: 89,10 euros for the entire period of the degree programme (210 cr)
- 1-yr. membership: 40,10 euros for the autumn and spring semesters
- 6-month membership: 31,10 euros for the autumn OR spring semester
The membership fees for new members include the 15,10 euro student card and registration fee, which students need to pay only once.
The membership fees for students continuing their studies/old students during the 2013-2014 academic year are:
- 1-yr. membership: 25 euros for the autumn and spring semesters
- 6-month membership: 16 euros for the autumn OR spring semester
As proof of their membership, students receive a student card with a sticker indicating the academic year. The card entitles students to receive dozens of benefits, locally and nationally. The student card can also be used as a library card in Seinäjoki UAS's libraries. There are two types of cards: blue card for full-time students and green card for other students. Additional information about the cards can be acquired at http://www.samo.fi/inenglish
In addition, each member receives SAMO's academic calendar and the SAMO magazine sent to their home four times a year, which contains information about current issues in the academic world. SAMO members also receive a discount on student overalls and on admission fees to events organised by the union.
The highest decision-making body in SAMO is the Council of Representatives appointed by the students through an election. The Council has 20 members. The Board, which is chosen by the council, has executive authority and the activities carried out by the Board are divided into different areas of responsibility. The Board currently has a chairperson, social policy coordinator, educational policy coordinator, tutor coordinator, international affairs coordinator, communications coordinator, cultural coordinator and a sports coordinator. SAMO also has three paid employees to handle routine activities: a secretary general, student interest secretary and a tutor secretary. The SAMO office is open weekdays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and it is located at Frami F 1st floor at address Kampusranta 11, 60320 Seinäjoki.
Tutor system provides peer guidance and support especially for new students as they begin their studies and become familiar with the school community and town. Together with the educational counsellors, the SAMO student union is responsible for training new student tutors and for organising tutor activities at Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences. Friendship, assistance and confidential relationships are the keywords of every student tutor. The whole idea behind the system is that no one is left alone and there is a solution for every problem!
SAMO's international affairs sector strives to develop an international atmosphere at Seinäjoki UAS. The international affairs coordinator on the Board of SAMO organises international activities together with the international tutors in the schools and with the staff of Seinäjoki UAS. Activities include international theme days, activities for mobility students and orientation for students going abroad. The purpose of the international activities is to soften the impact of culture shock, reduce prejudices, and share accurate information and to encourage Finnish students to go abroad.
SAMO organises various types of sports activities and regular visits to the gym. In addition, tournaments involving at least four different types of sports events are organised each year; they have indeed become a tradition at Seinäjoki UAS and are extremely popular. To make fitness easy, students are entitled to discounts at various sports and fitness centres, and they also receive types of benefits. SAMO sells tickets for gym in sponsored member price to its members.
The purpose of SAMO's cultural activities is to offer students a psychological and social counterbalance to studying. SAMO organises various celebrations, such as the traditional overall party, the opening ceremony for the academic year, Christmas parties and May Day events.
As regards social policy, SAMO is concerned with student financial aid, student health care, issues associated with living and cafeteria operations. Important part of Samos work is developing student health care services and informing students about them. Seinäjoki UAS is one of the two universities of applied sciences taking part in a three-year FHSH pilot which gives Seinäjoki UAS degree students the possibility to use FSHS health care services. On the national level, SAMO influences educational and social issues through the Union of Students in Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences, reaching even the highest government officials.
SAMO looks after students interests and endeavours to influence the quality and development of education at Seinäjoki UAS and to take action where any shortcomings are concerned. The representatives chosen by SAMO are members of various teams and committees and gather feedback from students to bring it to the awareness of the staff. Persistent, active work has proved fruitful and the views of the students are more and more evident in the planning implementation of studies.
Why not lend us your helping hand! We need active and enthusiastic people to carry out the activities described above. Be one of them! Join up and be a part of the student union of opportunities - building our future and the future of our fellow students!
For more information about SAMO, see www.samo.fi.