Student Union of the University of Helsinki 1868–2018

The Student Union of the University of Helsinki celebrates turning 150 years old in 2018. Founded in 1868, the Student Union has acted as an advocator and safety net for students from the very beginning, looking after its members’ wellbeing and rights. This year, we are celebrating HYY’s history and present day with numerous events and campaigns.

Throughout the decades, HYY has influenced matters, caused sensations and acted as a representative. It has been the enabler of student-oriented activities and the voice of students from the tumultuous end of the 19th century up to the progressive 1960s and to the present day. The Student Union is a force capable of changing the world, and it is involved in building an affluent society both now and in the future.

Today, HYY has around 27,000 students and 250 member organisations. Within HYY and its organisations, people take up hobbies, learn new things and influence matters; they create culture, shared knowledge and networks of friends that last a lifetime. First and foremost, HYY is a community into which each member of the Student Union leaves their own mark.

The theme of the historic anniversary is communality. HYY150 is dedicated to everyone the Student Union has ever given support, safety and endless opportunities. Current or former member of HYY: 2018 is your anniversary, because the Student Union would not exist without you.

HYY Group – The future at stake

From the outset, the Student Union has raised funds itself in order to enable the activities of its members. Nowadays, HYY’s assets are managed and developed by HYY Group. HYY Group’s operations consist of different parts: finance and real estate development, restaurant activities, referring to the UniCafe restaurants and Well cafés, as well as the largest summer hostel in Finland, HostelAcademica.

The Anniversary year is an important year for HYY Group. It marks an opportunity for us to celebrate the uniqueness of our owner and remind people how large an impact the Student Union has had in students’ lives throughout the years.

The Student Union has often acted as a pioneer and innovator. The first display of students’ persistence and desire to create something new was the construction of the Old Student House over 140 years ago, which was then followed by other construction projects. Other good examples include the establishment of the first student restaurants and the construction of student housing. Together, we have developed services and companies that are a part of the everyday life of students and residents of Helsinki both now and in the future.
Raising new issues, experimentation and risk-taking describe both the Student Union and HYY Group quite well. For the Group, business is all about perseverance, the realisation of its student owners’ values and the development of an international and sustainable city of science and finance.

Congratulations to each and every member of HYY, both current members and alumni! We will make the next 150 years possible too.

Welcome to celebrate the 150-year-old Student Union of the University of Helsinki!