Statement: the Student Union hopes that the future Rector will place special emphasis on education and internationalism

OYY expects the University of Oulu’s Board to conduct an open and inclusive selection process for the Rector

The Student Union of the University of Oulu (OYY) hopes that the selection process for the Rector of the university will be well thought out, open and inclusive. As the 5-year term of the Rector is coming to an end, the University of Oulu’s Board has today opened the application process by publishing a call for applications to find the Rector for the period 2025-2029. 

The selection of the Rector is the responsibility of the University’s Board. The Rector is an important person in the university community, and OYY believes it is important that the process is communicated openly and that all members of the community have the opportunity to be informed and to get to know the candidates. We expect the University Board to provide up to date and inclusive communication to students as well. 

The Rector will lead the whole university along the lines set out by the Board and the strategy. Therefore, we need a Rector with networks and collaborative skills and, above all, a willingness to act in the interests of the university community as a whole. ”From the students’ point of view, it is important that the Rector values education and listens to the students. We hope that the Rector will be willing to cooperate with the Student Union and engage in difficult discussions – this is how the university has been developed in the past,” says Anton Kostiainen, Chair of the OYY Board. 

The Student Union hopes that our multidisciplinary university attracts good candidates for the position of Rector. In a large organisation, the ability to cooperate and encourage cooperation are valuable skills, and the university’s board is also looking for them in the call for applications. Collaboration and internal dialogue build a genuine community in which its members feel they belong, and this must also extend to students. The importance of community was also highlighted in a values survey conducted by OYY in spring 2024. ”Networks beyond the university and international experience are requirements highlighted in the call for applications, with which it is easy to agree. Our university is already a truly international university and its importance will continue to grow. A big part of the University’s funding comes from international partners. Top management must also be able to take internationality into account in all its activities,” says Kostiainen.

The university’s new strategy for the coming years, adopted in the spring, places a stronger emphasis on education than before. High-quality undergraduate education attracts Finnish and international applicants to the university, promotes the employment of graduates and ensures that we will continue to have researchers from within the university. High-quality education is therefore the cornerstone of a successful university, and it is important for the future Rector to value education. ”The University’s Board  has an important task in choosing the best person to implement the university’s new strategy and to take the University of Oulu forward as an important player and educator in the region and the whole of Northern Finland,” says Kauko Keskisärkkä, Secretary General of OYY. 

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