Östersund has been chosen to be the Student City of the Year 2018/2019 by the Swedish National Union of Students (SFS). Below is the jury’s motivation.
The Jury’s motivation The Student City of the Year 2018/2019
“The award “Student City of the Year” is awarded a city that works to improve and promote the life and situation among all the students in the city. A good student city is characterized by dialogue and good cooperation. A real opportunity for students to participate and influence.
Östersund is not only characterized by sports and outdoor life, but the city has for long time had an active collaboration platform called MittÖs, where representatives from the student union, the municipality, the student sport association, the university and the business community meet to discuss
their common interest – that is, the students.
MittÖs has the ability to twist and turn on complex issues – where each organization is contributing with it’s perspective – to establish common goals and strategies where the students’ best interests are the focus. The good work has and will continue to confer on students and their right to influence.
Östersund has a housing guarantee for students, which means that students get a residence within a month. This is a cornerstone of being an attractive student city. MittÖs thinks that it is still important to offer students this guarantee.
Many students also visit the city for its nature and outdoor life. Already at the beginning of the education, the students are welcomed to Östersund by the residents of Östersund and the “Östersund Party”. The student sport association (ÖSIS) can offer a variety of leisure activities for a low cost for the students and maximizing their study time.
Students will be able to meet the surrounding community through mentoring programs and challenges and thus become an integral part of the discussions regarding Östersund’s development.
There are some challenges left, which Östersund is not afraid to meet. Cheaper public transportation, a more student-integrated city center and an even stronger link between students and business is next on MittÖs agenda. Östersund also shows the importance of not only achieving housing guarantee for students, but also the importance of maintain it once it is achieved. Another goal is to get more students to stay in Östersund after completed studies, since all parties consider it as very valuable for the development of the city but also the region.
The award therefore is given to a city that is not afraid of new challenges. A city that always has development in focus. A city that is prepared to do everything for the students to thrive – before, during, and after their studies. “