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Demola’s projects turn students into agents of change

Published on 20.5.2021
Tampere Universities
Demola.PHOTO: Pouya Lucky / Demola
Demola offers university students the opportunity to take part in future-oriented projects that address social challenges while earning credits towards their degree. The One for Humanity Programme, implemented for the second time this year, invites students to join the race to find solutions to global challenges.

Demola is a co-creation platform that offers university students the opportunity to participate in a broad range of projects and earn credits that are counted towards their degree.

Demola’s eight-week student projects examine different themes but are all geared towards finding solutions to future challenges. University students from around the world are invited to join the projects in an effort to bring together students from different backgrounds. They are divided into teams that work together with, for example, companies.  

“The teams are made up of students from different countries and fields of study. They delve into a specific topic to identify and resolve practical challenges. The projects are carried out fully online,” says Ida Riikonen, marketing and communications specialist at Demola. 

Opportunities to explore new avenues

According to Demola’s co-creation expert Erik Nyroos, the projects enable students to combine their skills and intrinsic motivation.

“The projects encourage students to try new things and take on new challenges. It is okay to make mistakes. If something does not work out, try a different approach,” Nyroos describes the philosophy.

“Joining the projects is also a great way to make new friends and build contacts with students from all over the world. The projects help students expand their expertise and develop their teamwork skills,” Ida Riikonen adds.

Demola’s student projects tackle a wide variety of major issues.

“The projects focus not so much on finding specific solutions but on gaining a better understanding of different phenomena and thereby building a better society for us all,” Erik Nyroos points out.

One for Humanity seeks solutions for global problems

The One for Humanity Programme has been launched by Demola for the second time this year. One for Humanity seeks to find solutions to and increase our understanding of social problems and conflicts. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland is involved in the programme as a partner.

“The programme is divided into six major themes: ecology, society, politics, behaviour, data, economy and technology. Global student projects that explore these themes will be initiated throughout the year,” Erik Nyroos describes.

Yen Nguyen is a fourth-year student of environmental engineering at Tampere University of Applied Sciences.  PHOTO: Yen Nguyen

Yen Nguyen, who studies environmental engineering at Tampere University of Applied Sciences, participates in one of the projects launched within the framework of Demola’s One for Humanity Programme. Her project team focuses on waste management systems and their development.

“I joined One for Humanity as I needed to earn credits towards a compulsory internship. I chose this project because it explores themes that I find interesting and that are related to my field of study,” Nguyen says. 

Nguyen says that the project has taught her about teamwork. She has gained new perspectives by working together with students from different fields and cultures. According to Nguyen, the projects enable students to combine their acquired knowledge and skills with creativity and fresh ideas. 

“Demola’s projects provide students with a huge playground, so to speak. We are assigned to resolve a practical problem but need to think outside the box to create solutions for the future,” Nguyen sums up.

Text: Nelli Peltonen