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 University of Applied Sciences and the student associations at the university's various schools. The organisation also maintains relations with business life and student unions at other universities of applied sciences, as well as with municipal and State administration. SAMO is a member of the Finnish Federation of Student Unions, SAMOK ry and therefore, also a member of Finnish Student Sports Federation (OLL).
The activities carried out by SAMO are based on Section- 41 of the Act on Universities of Applied Sciences. The Student Union's statutory duty is to function as a bond between its members and to promote their societal, social, mental educational endeavours as well as their status as students in society. Furthermore, the Student Union's duty is to choose student representatives for the Board of the University of Applied Sciences and other multi-member bodies, as well as to participate in other activities of the University.
All the students studying at Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences are welcome to join SAMO; it only requires filling out a membership application online and paying the membership fee. At the moment, SAMO has over 2 700 members. For more detailed instructions, visit http://www.samo.fi/eng.
Membership fees for new members for the academic year 2015-2016:
- 4-yr. membership: 80 euros for the entire period of the degree programme (240 cr)
- 3,5-yr. membership: 74 euros for the entire period of the degree programme (210 cr)
- 1-yr. membership: 25 euros for the autumn and spring semesters
- 6-month membership: 16 euros for the autumn OR spring semester
While joining the Student Union a student gets a student card which will be charged in addition to the membership fee. The student card for degree students costs 15,10 euros or 30,10 euros (international ISIC-card). It is possible to choose a card with or without a payment feature, price is the same (ISIC-card has the payment feature automatically). The card is paid only once, while joining.
Exchange students staying in Finland for a shorter period of time can join SAMO with a paper form and they will get a cheaper student card (8 euros) without payment features etc. The application forms are available at SAMO office.
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. Additional information about the cards can be acquired at http://www.samo.fi/eng
In addition, each member receives SAMO's academic calendar for ongoing academic year. Members also receive a discounts on student overalls and on admission fees to events organised by SAMO.
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 elected 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, an Adviser responsible for students interest and member services, and a Secretary of tutoring and sports. SAMO's office is open on weekdays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is located at Frami F (1st floor), at 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 student community and the city. 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 motto 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 University of Applied Sciences. 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 The University. Activities include international theme days, activities for foreign exchange students, and orientation for students going abroad. The purpose of the international activities is to soften the impact of culture shock, reduce prejudices, to 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 University of Applied Sciences and are extremely popular. To make fitness easy, students are entitled to discounts at various sports and fitness centres, and they also receive other types of benefits. SAMO sells gym tickets at a 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 of the academic year, Christmas parties, and a May Day event in spring. In the diverse supply, there is something for everyone – also including students with families.
As regards social policy, SAMO is concerned with student financial aid, student health care, issues associated with housing, and the operations of the Faculty canteens. An important part of Samo’s work is developing student health care services and informing students of them. 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 teaching at Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences and to take action whenever any shortcomings are observed. The representatives elected 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 often taken into account in the planning and 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 us and be part of the Student Union of numerous opportunities - building our future and that of our fellow students!
For more information about SAMO, visit www.samo.fi/eng.