2021 AT HAMK
Positive developments even during exceptional times.
2021 continued to be marked by the Covid 19 pandemic. Even in emergency conditions, we were able to increase contact lessons from time to time. We returned to remote work and studies when the situation so required.
A record number of students, 1,394, graduated from HAMK. Big congratulations to all those who completed their degree! There was also a positive increase in other degree programme indicators, such as the number of students graduating in time and the total number of students.
The implementation of the HAMK 2030 strategy was launched. We became stronger as a higher education institution; among other things, our new continuous learning entity HAMK Up took off. In fact, HAMK’s students received the highest number of credits in professional specialisation studies out of all universities of applied sciences in 2021. The clarification of our research units’ profiles and an increase in competitiveness also serve as evidence of our stronger position.
In 2021, we further developed our quality management and prepared for an international audit carried out in 2022. We also carried out self-assessments that support our development work and even international peer learning. The implementation of the Sustainable Development Programme continued. In the Green Metric World University ranking measuring the sustainability of higher education institutions, HAMK ranked 14th out of 1,000 participants, the highest position held in Finland. The result clearly improved from previous years.
We were able to promote internationalisation by participating in various innovation ecosystems, for instance. Education was developed by investing in e-modules, guidance and student services independent of time and place. The LeaD team established in 2018 played a key role in this development work. Thanks to the team’s support, we were able to cope very well with the transition to remote learning and work resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.
We also invested in measures supporting a sense of community during the coronavirus pandemic. A good example of this was the virtual staff days organised in August. As the pandemic prolonged, we have been concerned about the coping of our students and staff. As a result, we are glad that at the beginning of 2022, it has been possible to return to the campuses to build a vibrant higher education community together.
January: HAMK and XAMK investigated their development opportunities
The Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK) and the South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences (Xamk) launched a study, which explores the potential of universities of applied sciences to develop into higher education institutions that are more competitive at the international level and serve their regions more extensively. Hannu Sirén, previously the Director of the Higher Education Department at the Ministry of Education and Culture, was hired as the investigator.
February: The number of degrees increased
In 2021, we could report that the first, exceptional pandemic year 2020 was not visible in the number of degrees completed at the Häme University of Applied Sciences except in a positive way. During the year, HAMK students completed the highest number of degrees compared to recent years, in total 1,344. The record number brought some joy at a time when the pandemic had led to providing most education online almost exclusively and also challenged students’ coping in other ways.
March: Participating in the Climate Week
For the second time, the Häme University of Applied Sciences participated in organising the Hämeenlinna Climate Week. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Climate Week mostly included online events and communications. Among other things, HAMK organised the Climate Parliament panel discussion.
April: The number of applicants continued to increase
More than 10,000 applicants applied to the Häme University of Applied Sciences in the second joint application round of the spring. The number of applications increased for the second consecutive year. The number of applications increased by more than eight per cent last year.
June: HAMK Talents launched, career survey completed
HAMK launched the new Häme University of Applied Sciences Talents service, which aims to respond more flexibly to the needs of companies and stakeholders in the region and to support students’ entrepreneurship.
The results of the career survey were completed. Satisfaction with the degree is high (over 80 per cent) both nationally and among HAMK graduates.
August: Lepaa awarded again
HAMK’s Lepaa campus park was granted the Green Flag Award for the sixth time. Green Flag Award is an international rewarding system that recognises the quality of the maintenance and administration of green areas. It is governed by the UK organisation Keep Britain Tidy, and in Finland by the Finnish Association of Landscape Industries.
September: Cooperation with a sports academy was launched, an increase in the number of applicants
Tavastia Sports Academy and Häme University of Applied Sciences launched a collaboration aimed at developing flexible study paths for athletes and offering suitable guidance.
The number of applicants for the joint application process in the autumn increased by more than 17 per cent from last autumn. Construction and nursing were the most popular fields among applicants.
October: The living lab was founded, the first RUN Superweek
HAMK and the Luotsi Foundation for Work Coaching established the Living Lab, which carries out a new kind of cooperation with employers. The Lab offers work activities for people with intellectual disabilities and mental health rehabilitees and links the development of social services to the learning modules in the Degree Programme in Social Services.
From 25 to 29 October, Häme University of Applied Sciences organised a super week of the RUN European University, bringing about 80 visitors from across Europe to Hämeenlinna.
December: Success in Green Metrics, alumni of the year, investment in Pirkanmaa
HAMK ranked 14th among nearly one thousand participants in the GreenMetric ranking measuring the sustainability of higher education institutions’ operations and operational environment. The position has improved annually, as HAMK ranked 35th in 2020 and 87th in 2019.
Turo Nylund, an entrepreneur in the programming sector and graduate of the Degree Programme in Business Information Technology, was selected as the alumni of the Year. After graduating, he has been in active contact with HAMK and has also employed several HAMK students in his company.
We reported that we are involved in building an excellence and innovation ecosystem for sustainable and smart textiles in Pirkanmaa.
The RUN European University was granted significant funding for the further development of research and innovation networks and European innovation hubs. The aim is to build working-life-oriented master’s and doctoral degrees in collaboration with businesses and industry. HAMK is responsible for developing researchers’ career paths, ensuring guidance competence and actively promoting the implementation of an innovation hub based on the bioeconomy in the Häme region.
The HAMK’s Carbon 4.0 project promoted applied research on carbon sequestration in a multidisciplinary manner. All HAMK Research Units were involved in developing methods for utilising data collected from digitalisation and bioeconomy processes to enhance carbon sequestration.
One of the most significant new developments was the Field Observatory service, implemented jointly with the Finnish Meteorological Institute, the Finnish Environment Institute and the Baltic Sea Action Group. It supports both farmers and carbon farming research by providing real-time monitoring of carbon sequestration in arable land and the factors affecting it. The service is openly available to everyone online. HAMK has been responsible for the implementation of data processing and visualisation in the user interface for the Field Observatory.
The Liikenne 4.0 project of the HAMK Smart research unit examined the use of the Hämeenlinna square and the movement paths of people at the square using machine vision and artificial intelligence. The main goal of the project is to support sustainable growth, the smooth running and safety of daily life, and good accessibility of the region as envisaged by the Häme programme, which is accomplished by developing solutions for transport, mobility and logistics
The SatoBotti project of the HAMK Tech research unit was launched in August 2021. The project examines the utilisation of robots in different cultivation environments. The aim is to offer robotised solutions that berry and agricultural farms and greenhouses can utilise primarily in picking produce. The two-year project involves carrying out the first pilots in the industry based on testing on tomato and berry harvesting in the Tavastia Proper region. A further aim is to develop the strategic competence of farms in the introduction and utilisation of robotics.
The exceptional circumstances during the coronavirus pandemic have had a negative impact on students’ wellbeing. HAMK launched its efforts to solve the problem with the VOIMA project funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture, which developed a model that directly integrates wellbeing services and student peer support activities into courses. As part of the project, the first wellbeing tutors began their activities in autumn 2021. Their task is to engage with students and generate ideas for increasing wellbeing from a student perspective.
The Kaupunkiviljelystä järkiruokaa (“Proper food from urban farming”) project created an operating model for urban farming that describes how urban farming could produce part of the food needed by city dwellers. As part of the project, 21 urban farmers or groups of farmers from Hämeenlinna got their hands dirty and started growing local food in Hämeensaari at the beginning of summer 2021. The project included compiling a guide for hobby farmers that includes concrete instructions that the residents of detached houses can use for rational cultivation that utilises nutrient cycles in their own garden.
Research on wearable smart technology took major steps forward when measures were taken to create a laboratory focusing on the topic on the Valkeakoski campus, enabling testing wearable smart tech applications and honing them into commercialised products.
Häme University of Applied Sciences Ltd’s turnover and other operating income for the 2021 financial year totalled EUR 58.2 (56.0) million.
The largest cost item was personnel costs: EUR -39.1 (-38.1) million. At the end of 2021, Häme University of Applied Sciences employed a total of 617 (683) people, of whom 263 were men and 451 women. During the year, the total quantity of work carried out was 618 (599) person-years. HAMK had 534 (508) permanent and 180 (175) temporary employees. At the end of 2019, the average employee age was 46.5 (47). The sick leave percentage in 2021 was 5.6% (4.5%).
The fund-raising, investment and funding activities of Häme University of Applied Sciences Ltd amounted to EUR 1.3 (0.6) million in total, of which the change in the fair value of investments was EUR 0.9 (0.4) million. The profit for the period was EUR 2,596,932 (1,355,495).
The investments in buildings, and machinery and equipment totalled EUR -2.4 (-2.3) million.
The limited liability company’s solvency and liquidity were excellent. Its equity ratio was 84.9 (84) percent.
Composition of the Board of Directors 1 January 2021–22 June 2021
Tarja Filatov served as the chair of the company’s Board of Directors and Kai Muukkonen and Kai Heimonen as the vice-chairs. The other board members were Jouni Mäkelä (replaced by Eino Järvinen as of 19 March), Jenna Kankaanpää, Minna Nissilä, Mika Laine, Laura Vainio and Johannes Asikainen.
Composition of the Board of Directors 22 June 2021–30 September 2021
Tarja Filatov served as the chair of the company’s Board of Directors and Kai Muukkonen and Kai Heimonen as the vice-chairs. Other Board members were Eino Järvinen, Jenna Kankaanpää, Minna Nissilä, Mika Laine, Piia Gauriloff and Leena-Kaija Lehto.
Board members 30 September 2021–31 December 2021
Tarja Filatov served as the chair of the company’s Board of Directors and Veera Kiretti and Kari Moisiola as vice-chairs. Other Board members were Jari Marjamäki, Kirsi Lehto, Pasi Niemi, Mika Laine, Piia Gauriloff and Leena-Kaija Lehto.
The company’s Managing Director was Pertti Puusaari, and the Deputy Managing Director was the Director of Finance and Adminstration, Johanna Närhi.
IN AN INTERNATIONAL SUSTAINABILITY RANKING
PRINCIPAL RESEARCH SCIENTISTS