Student nations are interdisciplinary associations of the students of different ages and different fields, where members are usually connected by their ties to the same geographical area. Any student union member can join a student nation, regardless of their study field, lifesyle and political preferences. Often a student joins a student nation based on a municipality, student housing, hobby, or friendship or family relations. Student nations are the oldest student organisations in Finland.
Of the 15 student nations of the University of Helsinki, 4 are Swedish-speaking. Regular activities of student nations include weekly student nation nights. Student nations also include committees, recreational clubs, choirs, orchestras and drama clubs. Student nations also have their own facilities where members gather together to engage in activities, celebrate, organise their activities and, above all, spend time together. Along with organised events, an essential part of the student nation's character is its homeliness: members can spend their leisure time there, read newspapers, study, use the internet, watch tv or just hang out. In addition to many typical student parties, student nations also have their own traditional parties, which express the typical culture of their region.
Different traditions bring continuity to activities, but traditions also live and change when the student nation generations modify them to suit their own era. Student nations have friendships with student organisations in different countries, particularly Sweden and Estonia. Student nation members regularly visit the events of international friendship organisations and take care of the programme of the representatives of these organisations in the event of their own student nation.
Nations in the University of Helsinki
- Nylands Nation (NN)
- Eteläsuomalainen osakunta (ESO)
- Savolainen osakunta (SavO)
- Karjalainen Osakunta (KO)
- Hämäläis-Osakunta (HO)
- Keskisuomalainen Osakunta (KSO)
- Kymenlaakson Osakunta (KyO)
- Åbo Nation (ÅN)
- Varsinaissuomalainen osakunta (VSO)
- Satakuntalainen Osakunta (SatO)
- Wiipurilainen Osakunta (WiO)
- Östra Finlands Nation (ÖFN)
- Etelä-Pohjalainen Osakunta (EPO)
- Vasa nation (VN)
- Pohjois-Pohjalainen Osakunta (PPO)