I started my studies in the fall of 2017. My intention was to graduate as soon as possible and not to do anything extra during my studies. Shortly after starting school, I met a person who eventually got me to try to be a part of many extra activities. I suddenly found myself attending a meeting where we formed our electoral alliance and discussed the issues we would promote in the upcoming election of the Council of Representatives. At that time I still didn’t know exactly where I was applying, what the Council of Representatives actually was, or what it did. Despite this, I haven’t regretted that decision even a bit. From this began my journey as a member of the Council of Representatives for the next three years.
The Council of Representatives is not the most visual part of the student union, actually on the contrary. However, it is one of the most important places where to influence the activities and the future of the student union. So you get to influence and make decisions that would best serve the interests of every future and current student. The Council of Representatives decides e.g. strategy, action plan, budget, and membership fee of the student union. Also, Council is responsible for overseeing the activities of the Board of the student union.
Here’s just a small part of what is discussed at the meetings of the Council of Representatives. In addition to these, I’ve been able to influence many things during those three years as a member of the Council. In my opinion, the Council of Representatives has been a great place to influence the activities of the student union and to other students’ school experience. There I’ve been right at the heart of the student union and been able to make decisions that benefit others. While all this may sound boring bureaucracy as well as time-consuming, it’s not. I’ve enjoyed a lot of this channel to influence and where working hours are relatively small in relation to the benefits it brings.
So what benefits have I had working as a member of the Council of Representatives?
Let’s start with the famous word, network. I’ve gotten to know a lot of people from Laurea as well as from other metropolitan area student unions and also gotten many good friends. I couldn’t highlight more the value and importance of networks and friends to you and the Council of Representatives is a great place to find them. Also, I’ve learned and developed many skills that are useful in the working life later on. I’ve developed e.g. argumentation and expressing impressively my opinions and views. These are the kind of skills that everyone is sure to need in their lifetime.
I recommend to you all to apply to the Council of Representatives. The election starts in the beginning of the fall semester, and it’s worth it to apply if you wonder even a bit if the Council is a place for you. If you can’t find a suitable electoral alliance from the existing ones, you can always form a new one. Either only by yourself or with other people. And you can always contact me or current members of the Council if you have any questions about the election or the Council of Representatives, we’ll be happy to help you.
So don’t be afraid if you don’t know everything or don’t know anyone in advance. There is a great team spirit and atmosphere in the Council of Representatives every year. Everyone is involved and gets training. So feel free to apply, you’ll definitely not regret the decision!
Liisa Minkkinen, former member Council of Representatives