The whole class is giving

Eva Maria Raudasoja
Doctor of Education, Economist.
Now: Director of the Extension School at the University of Oulu

The University of Oulu is doing a lot of good research and carries out its work with a solid Arctic attitude. In many fields, we are taking strides at the international level. The campus area has been wonderfully developed, and I have the pleasure of experiencing in my own work every day the dynamic, action-focused atmosphere that prevails at the university. The Tellus Arena is one great example of how different scientific fields and community partners meet together at the university under the same roof.

The emotional experience is the most important thing

We’ve developed a habit of having class reunions every five years. When we were planning our most recent get-together, I began to think about bringing my classmates to see my workplace. We studied to become teachers 30 years ago, and at that time the studies took place in the centre of the city, on Kasarmintie. For many, Linnanmaa was a distant place during their studies. Tellus Arena is the university's new living room and meeting place, and it is shared by everyone. It was immediately clear to me that I wanted to invite my classmates to see these facilities.

"In my opinion the emotional experience of donating is more important – the sense that one is making one’s own contribution towards the cause."

Soon afterwards I also started thinking that we could also introduce the donor activities. This was then accepted as part of the programme for the meeting. Many people didn’t actually know that the university has donor activities. And best of all, everyone wanted to donate! The amounts didn’t need to be large. In my opinion the emotional experience of donating is more important – the sense that one is making one’s own contribution towards the cause. As donors, we also got to see our names added to the list of donors in the Tellus Hall.

To the borders of scientific investigation

As part of our class reunion, we also heard some of the university’s news: the most recent developments in what the University of Oulu is doing and where scientific research is heading. It’s not good to keep a class reunion restricted only to one’s own field, as the University of Oulu’s strength is in its multidisciplinary approach, and people are interested in science and its advances also in areas outside their own field. The world is a multidisciplinary one and continuous learning is a challenge for us all.

I’d like to offer this example of our class reunion as a model which could be used by other employees at the university to organise their reunions. This is also a good way to activate the alumni network in the university community to explore the borders of scientific research.

"In a multidisciplinary science-based university, new types of innovations are possible when sciences are combined."

Finland’s resources are in its human capital

I choose to donate because I think it is important that Finland and Finnish higher education – and especially its research – remain on the world map. Finland’s resources are to be found in it's human capital, and through this the country’s competitiveness is maintained. In a multidisciplinary science-based university, new types of innovations are possible when sciences are combined.

One can continue donating for as long as one wishes. I myself donate at regular intervals whatever amount seems appropriate. My thought is that we could once again make another donation together with my classmates – by our next class reunion at the latest.

Last updated: 13.9.2019