On 12th august hyperlocal discussion “Why do we need higher education? Being a student in Estonia, Latvia and Finland!” took place at “Kino Bize”, Riga and also at Tartu, Estonia and Helsinki, Finland.
The theme of the pilot discussion organized within the Hybrid European Democracy Festival (HEDF) is primarily related to the representation of student interests and challenges affecting the availability, quality and future development of higher education. During the discussion, student representatives pointed out that the importance of higher education in everyone’s everyday life is related not only to expanding the scope of knowledge, but also to the opportunities for individual growth and the improvement of the study environment in general. As one of the main insights from the audience reveals that “(…) higher education is also self-knowledge, education, culture and the desire to learn, alongside with gaining independence.”
Belonging to the community of students emerged as a unifying element when talking about the integration of students in their local communities. Complications, which affect the student when changing the usual environment by starting studies at a higher education institution, serve as a reason for creating good and not so good study experiences, which is exactly why the student’s community provides such benefits as receiving support and promoting networking.
Our gratitude goes to panellists Katariina Järve (University of Tartu, Estonia), Trine Tamm (Tallinn University, Estonia), Adel Rizvi (Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, Finland), Kristaps Opincāns (alumni of University of Latvia, Latvia) and Simona Granta (Riga Technical University, Latvia) for their meaningful contributions that made our discussion informative and enlightening.
The discussion came to life thanks to partners: Miltton Events, Timeout Foundation, National Union of Students in Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences, Student Union of Latvia, Estonian National Student Federation.
The discussion was a pre-event for the Hybrid European Democracy Festival – a pan-European discussion festival covering more than 20 cities across Europe by 2024.
The recording of the event is available here: https://fb.watch/mpG5n_gEU-/
More information about the discussion and HEDF is available here: https://democracyfestival.org/