Dear students!

We are pleased to say that we’re only a step away from the end of spring semester and school year. Final efforts before the summer, which will hopefully let us to move around without restrictions and allow us to be social.

One of the busiest months of the year for USTU is undoubtedly May, and it’s time to sum it up.

Out with the old and in with the new

May has shed bright light onto us as the end of semester and school year approaches but it’s also been complicated at times and very busy. Besides final exams UTSU’s employees as well as student representatives have mainly focused on the elections of next year’s representatives. UTSU is also on the brink of a new era — soon we will continue with a new chairman. 

The students representing their faculty or institute in the coming year have by now had their first seminar on the structure and work principles of the Student Union and the university. If you’re not yet familiar with the representatives of your faculty and institute you can see the voting results here. They will also be found soon on the Representatives section on our homepage with the beginning of their mandate on 1 July. We wish them lots of bright ideas and strength to realize them!

UTSU 100

One hundred years ago on 17 May in 1920, a meeting was held in the main building of the University of Tartu, which established the first organization that puts the interests and rights of students first. The initial reason for convening it was equal treatment of students regardless of their social background, gender and nationality. Over time, some of the reasons have remained the same, but many other tasks have been added. For example, today UTSU actively participates in shaping Estonian education policy.

Although we weren’t able to celebrate the centenary in May we will do this in December. However a very interesting book introducing the history of UTSU will be published on the occasion, compiled by Toivo Kikkas, Master of History and Student Representative, and Janet Laidla, Project Manager. One chapter has also been published by the university magazine Universitas Tartuensis and you can read it here.

Crisis and e-learning

May also marked the end of the crisis situation and brought substantial changes in the restrictions during the ongoing emergency situation. Nevertheless, large gatherings should be treated with caution, which is why the University of Tartu has started to prepare a comprehensive analysis of the lessons of the crisis situation and changes in the study organization for the possible continuation of e-learning in the autumn. The analysis is carried out by the Centre for Applied Social Sciences (CASS) of the University of Tartu and the first terms of reference have already been submitted to them.

We discussed what are the forecasts for the continuation of studies in the autumn with the Rector of the University of Tartu Toomas Asser during the discussion evening on 29 May at the Delta Centre. Among other things, we also talked about the restrictions on students from third countries coming to study in Estonia. It is important to understand that the restrictions apply to both sides — if international students can’t study here, our students can’t study in those countries we set restrictions to.

Graduation ceremonies

Taking into account the epidemiological situation, the university has also decided to carry out the graduation ceremonies virtually. Find the schedule here.

With this, the University of Tartu is an example in terms of staying healthy, but it also facilitates the participation in the ceremony for both students and their relatives from all over Estonia. In addition, the main building of the university will be decorated for graduates to be able to take memorable pictures of themselves which can later be decorated with the “Graduated!” frame on Facebook designed by the university.

What we do seems cool? Very soon you can join UTSU too! Read more here.

Best wishes,
UT Student Union