Although the history of TREY only begun in 2019, the student unions of Tampere have long and eventful pasts.
Tamy’s history begun on 22 November 1925, when the Civic College’s student association started its operations. Every citizen who had indicated adequate requirements for studies, regardless of their educational background, could apply for the Civic College. This was new in Finland.
The student association changed its name to student union in 1926 and the Civil College its name to the School of Social Sciences in 1930. During the first decade of activity, the societal tensions of Finland could be seen among the students, especially between the socialist and patriotic clubs. Correspondingly, the war time brought students closer together. The strong political atmosphere of the 1930s took a turn after the war to unified activity in the spirit of reconstruction.
In 1945, the School of Social Sciences’ student union (YKO) faced the School of Social Science’s Ylioppilaat (YY) as a competitor, and it became the student union in 1949. These two student organisations worked side by side until 1971, when the student body merged with the student union.
In the 1950s, the School of Social Sciences begun to look for new facilities and considered moving away from Helsinki, because the number of students was increasing fast and the University of Helsinki was competing for the same students with their teaching schedule. The most tempting of all cities ended up being Tampere, and the decision to move was made in 1956 and the teaching begun in 1960.
During the move to Tampere, many student-owned institutions, like TOAS and Juvenes Oy, were established and are still active today. The student union improved its own administration in 1962 by establishing a Council of Representatives, the highest decision-making body.
The School of Social Sciences changed its name to University of Tampere in 1966. Simultaneously, the student union of the School of Social Sciences became the student union of the University of Tampere, Tamy for short. In 1960, the needs for development of the everyday life of students and supervision of interests led to actions that were considered even radical. One example was the payment strike in 1968, when the students protested the quick rise of the tuition fee. The increase was reversed. The strike also had effects on the renewal of the university’s administration, because in 1969, the students had a representative in all bodies of the university. Having student representation in the administration was ahead of its time because in cities such as Helsinki, the students only got a similar status in the beginning of 1990. The nationalisation of the university in 1974 was also a change strongly driven by students.
From the beginning of the 1960s until the end of the 1970s, a strong political tone affected the politics of the Council of Representatives, but at the turn of the 1980s, independent groups started to gain support. The number of candidates and the voter turnout decreased in the 1980s, as various one-matter movements and other external activity outside the university attracted active students. Solidarity, peace and development cooperation were emphasised in the international activity beginning from the 1980s. The organisation of the Women’s culture days begun in 1982, and in environmental politics, the focus was on preserving the architectural cultural heritage of Tampere.
The student-owned Yo-talo offered plenty of recreational activities: at the end of the 1970s, there were activities and events for every day of the week. Yo-talo brought together various cultural people. Tampere Film Festival, which is still organised annually, originated from the movie club Monroe that started at Yo-talo.
Halfway through the 1980s, the activity of the student union was embellished by big projects, such as building University of Tampere’s academic sports service centre Atalpa and Radio 957, of which Tamy was the main owner from 1987 to 1992. The radio project created financial issues, because running a commercial radio was a more difficult business than expected.
The purchasing power of the student financial aid decreased all through the 1980s. Tamy kept social affairs matters in the limelight with projects such as the subsistence days of 1989, where basic income was a topic of discussion and people were instructed on how to apply for social assistance. In the 1990s, the depression and scarcity hit the students hard. The most central goal of students was reached in 1992 when the Act on Financial Aid for Students came into force, and the loan-orientated nature of the financial aid was decreased.
In the turn of the millennium, environmental matters were emphasised in Tamy’s operations. In city politics, better cycling possibilities were promoted and at the university, the principles of sustainable development and responsibility were implemented.
At the beginning of the 21st century, a nationally significant topic of conversation was the limitations on study time, which were opposed strongly. In 2004, about 10,000 students marched in Helsinki and before that, a crowd of thousands marched in Tampere. Parliament finally decided on the limitations on study times in 2005.
Many people influential in politics, culture, science and art have been a part of Tamy. During its history, Tamy has been involved in influencing many benefits and subsidies that might even be self-evident to students today. It has also boldly taken a stand on societal matters locally, nationally and globally.
TTYY’s history officially began on 29 September 1965, when 78 students gathered in the new lecture hall of the School of Commercial Training in Kaleva, Tampere to select a board called Tampereen teekkarien raati from their midst. Back then, TKY, the student union of the Technical University, also operated as the student union of TTY’s current form. The form of the board that was selected was, therefore, a preliminary stage of the student union, TKY’s local office.
The first representative elections of Tampereen teekkarit were held in 19-20 November 1968. Back then, the Council of Representatives had 35 members. Tampereen teekkarit made even further progress in 1969, when it got its first (part-time) Secretary-General. The association was later authorised to send one observer representative to SYL’s union meetings, and two to STOL’s (the union of technical students of Finland).
The student union of the Tampere University of Technology was founded with a regulation in November 1972. The activity of the technical students of Tampere was so independent at this point that the change to their own student union was very controlled and almost unnoticeable.
The instability of the world in the ’70s brought with it a political wave, which could also be seen in the increase of parties in TTKY’s Council of Representatives. For the more political list of candidates, the goals included strong stands on the matters of the world and Finland. At the same time, TTKY also became more active than before in national student influencing through SYL.
In the 1980s, the independent had the majority arrangement in the activity of the Council of Representatives again, but at the same time TTKY had a crisis: Almost no one was interested in the student union anymore. The crisis culminated in the representative elections of 1985, where the number of candidates was exactly the same as the available seats in the Council of Representatives.
The student union’s office was moved to the main building at the turn of 1997. Before moving office, the opening hours became fixed as the familiar 8.30-16.00.