Board of the Tampere University Foundation approved the University Regulations for the new Tampere University on February 10th. The University Regulations were open for comments between Feb 3rd and 7th, and some 500 comments were given.
University Regulations is the most important rule in any university, because it defines all the different bodies of the university’s central government. Hence, University Regulations have evoked strong feelings, which manifested among other things as a walkout in University of Tampere.
Student Union of TUT issued a public statement on February 7th. We stated as our main concerns:
- Academic Board and faculty councils should have equal number of members between all the different groups (professors, rest of the staff, students)
- Academic Board shouldn’t have field of study or faculty based quotas, and deputy representatives should be allowed.
- Chair of the Appointment Committee should be a member of the university community.
- Decisions regarding the faculty structure should be delayed.
Additionally, Student Union commented on the Regulations directly to the Board of Tampere University Foundation. We composed a document from our comments, which is attached below. Please note that the document is in Finnish.
According to information given in Twitter, Board of Tampere University Foundation held a 7-hour meeting changing the University Regulations. The final version of the University Regulations was released on Monday 12th.
Most important changes were:
- Faculty councils got equal representation between the three groups (professors, rest of the staff, students)
- One extra student member to Academic Board.
- Field of study and faculty quotas were removed from Academic Board.
- Academic Board gets to choose Chair of the Appointment Committee.
- Doctoral degree is required also from the President.
As a whole, Student Union of TUT is pleased with the approved University Regulations. Many of the changes we pushed were included directly or indirectly, but some disappointments exist. Especially these changes were not heard:
- Academic Board didn’t get equal representation between the three groups.
- No deputy representatives to Academic Board.
- Faculty structure was approved without any larger changes.
- University community doesn’t have a majority in Appointment Committee.
The approved faculty structure is much the same that was proposed last year. However, University Regulations doesn’t specify where different fields of study locate in the new structure.
Academic Board is supposed to start operating on April 1st. This is the next goal of the whole university community. Most concrete sign of the process is the selection of the Board members. Professors and rest of the staff choose their representatives via elections. The first official body of the new Student Union, Central Election Committee, chooses the student members to the new Academic Board. Search for the student representatives has opened, and is open until March 7th.