- Swedish National Union of Students
The Swedish National Union of Students ("Sveriges Förenade Studentkårer", SFS), is an
umbrella organisationof students' unions at higher educationfacilities in Sweden. The organisation was founded in 1921. It has around 64 affiliated students' unions, gathering around 270,000 students (2007).
The large number of organised students can in part be explained by the fact that membership in the official local students' union is mandatory for students at universities and
university colleges in Sweden. The local students' union is, however, free to decide whether to join the National Union of Students or not. Although a majority of the students' unions are members, some have opted to stay out, including several organising business, law and medicine students. Occasionally, affiliated unions choose to leave the organisation, but sometimes rejoin at a later date, a pattern followed by both the Stockholm University Students' Unionand the Uppsala Student Union. The latest case of a large local students' union withdrawing from the Swedish National Union of Students is The Stockholm University Students' Union, in 2005.
The organisation works to represent the interest of its members on a national level, towards the Government, the Swedish Parliament, the political parties and the government agencies concerned with higher education. The organisation is also active on the international arena, particularly within the
National Unions of Students in Europe, ESIB.
At the annual national conference representatives from the member students' unions meet to decide on the policy framework of the organisation and to elect a national board. The board has 19 members, including the President and two or three Vice Presidents. The President and the Vice Presidents work full time at the head office in
Stockholmduring their term.
Several former student politicians in Sweden have moved on to high-level national party politics. One of them was
Olof Palme, who served as President of the Swedish National Union of Students in 1953.
Recent Presidents and Vice Presidents
Office Name 2008-2009 Moa Neuman; Henric Denzler, Stefan Björk 2007-2008 Elin Rosenberg; Pelle Rödin, Anna Petersson 2006-2007 Elin Rosenberg; Pelle Rödin, Esbjörn Hyltefors 2005-2006 Niclas Sigholm; Maria Noleryd, Kristoffer Burstedt, Lotta Ljungquist 2004-2005 Tobias Smedberg; Nina Gustafsson Åberg, Kristoffer Burstedt, Lotta Ljungquist 2003-2004 Ignacio Vita; Karin Björklund, Anna Karlsson, Per-Anders Strandberg 2002-2003 Sofia 'Fia' Karlsson; Jens Christian Berlin, Erik Bromander, Jimmy Magnusson 2001-2002 Peter Dahlgren; Johan Almqvist, Anna Lasses 2000-2001 Kathrin Österlund; Sara Stavås, Martin Willén 1999-2000 Peter Arvebro; Maria Jonegård, Johan Mårtensson 1998-1999 Claes Nyberg; Magnus Mörck, Helena Söderlind 1997-1998 Veronika Rundkvist; Helena Kaså, Sara Winnfors (now Bjursell)
Nations at Swedish universities
* [http://www.sfs.se/ Swedish National Union of Students] - Official site
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