Riga Technical University consists of approximately 15000 students, about 3000 of which are international students. Around 300 of all students are members of the RTU Student Parliament – not to mention, many more are involved as activists! The RTU SP members are elected by their peers, earning themselves the responsibility of representing the students of RTU. These 300 members each belong to the Student Councils of one of RTU’s nine faculties and four Study and Science Centres.
The RTU SP General Assembly is the highest decision-making body of the RTU SP, consisting of 45 Student Council delegated members, which is proportional to the number of students in each faculty. Amongst them is also one RTU Study and Science Centre SP representative, and one RTU Riga Business School representative. All decisions concerning changes in the RTU SP’s processes are made at the RTU SP General Assembly. This is also where the RTU SP executive body (the RTU SP Board) gets elected.
The RTU SP Board is a close-knit team of 10 students who ensure that daily processes in every sphere of student representation run smoothly. The team is managed by the president of the RTU SP, who is elected by the General Assembly every 2 years. The activity of the Board of Administration and the president are subject to review by the General Assembly, meaning that all propositions made by the Board are further coordinated by the highest RTU SP decision-making body.
Another essential role of the General Assembly is electing the RTU Senate which consists of 10 student members. These students directly represent the interests of all RTU students in the RTU collegial management decision-making authority (the Senate) where rulings on crucial procedures and policies regulating all RTU processes are made.
The President of the RTU SP is head of the organisation and all of its institutions. The SP President’s main responsibility is supervising the organisation’s general strategy by managing the actions of the RTU SP Board, the Student Councils and other RTU SP members. One of the most essential aspects of this role is the representation of student interests which is achieved by maintaining constant communication with the RTU management and the rector, as well as sitting on most RTU collegial decision-making bodies. In addition to the daily tasks and financial supervision of the RTU SP, the President also represents the RTU SP and all RTU students in other student and youth organisations, the mass media and various other events related to the sphere of the RTU SP.
The Vice President is the President’s right-hand man, support and substitute, both on a daily basis and on occasions when the President is ill, abroad or otherwise unavailable. Since RTU has 9 faculties, each of which has its own Student Council, one of the Vice President’s main duties is the coordination of the leaders of these Councils - aiding and uniting them - making sure they are updated on the decisions and activities of RTU SP and Council management. The Vice President also takes care of the organisation’s internal environment, motivates its members, corrects and updates the normative documents of the RTU SP, as well as organises project competitions.
As the name suggests, the External Relations department cooperates with various other organisations and key people. Their main role is the representation of RTU students in the Latvian Students’ Union (LSA) – participation and decision-making in LSA workshops and taking responsibility for students’ needs and interests on a national and international level. The External Relations department also collaborates with organisations such as NORDTEK, BALTECH, BEST and ensures successful communication with Student Councils from other Latvian universities, as well as honorary RTU SP members.
The Culture Department is responsible for enhancing the RTU SP’s cultural activities and traditions by organising and coordinating major events such as the well-known “Fukšu balle” or “Freshers’ ball”.
The Sports department coordinates various sports events, boosting the RTU SP’s sporting traditions. These include well-known sporting events such as Ronīši (Little Seals) in autumn and “Briedīši” (Little Bucks) in winter.
The RTU Student Parliament is continuously and actively working on a number of projects, both large and small. Although many students are aware of what the SP has to offer, it is important to ensure a constant flow of information about opportunities and achievements. The Marketing Department aims to create a positive and recognisable image of the SP to students, professors, administration and employees alike and extend this image outside of RTU’s internal sphere of influence. The RTU SP should be known not only for their words but for their actions. To ensure this, the marketing department guarantees that each project and event earns its added value by attracting supporting companies and looking out for potential partners.
The Public Relations Department is responsible for the technical implementation of the RTU SP’s image both within RTU and outside of it, making it the most recognisable department of all. Their roles include content compilation, the capturing and eternalisation of various RTU events through pictures and videos, as well as maintaining any RTU online presence: Instagram, Facebook and the SP website. The Public Relations Department has a close partnership with the Marketing Department seeing as the latter decides when posters and other visual materials promoting the SP’s image should be prepared and published.
The Studies Department is responsible for constantly improving the quality of studies at RTU. This department represents students’ opinions on academic issues both internally and externally, as well as coordinates course representatives and the academic advisors. Surveys on academic processes are carried out every semester. Further responsibilities of this department include organising student faction activities at the STU Senate, informing students about scholarships and crediting opportunities, maintaining communication between the RTU Studies department and the RTU Study Vice-Rector, and generally informing the RTU SP about current issues regarding the study process at the university.
The department of Environment and Infrastructure ensures a student-friendly environment and infrastructure on RTU premises. This department oversees life in student accommodations, whilst keeping an eye on their representatives. They are also responsible for the inclusion of events promoting a positive atmosphere, green thinking and social responsibility – these include “Koju dienas” - “Accommodation Days”, “Zaļā nedēļa” - “Green Week”, “Donoru dienas” - “Donor days” and others.
The main aim of the Department of Science and Innovation is to popularise science at RTU. This includes projects and events which provide a deeper insight into various scientific topics. Students are given opportunities to attend Science Rocks discussions led by professionals in their respective fields and acquire new skills in 3D printing competitions, etc.
This department also represents students at different academic levels. The RTU Science department Vice-rector and student representative cooperate frequently to ensure an optimal exchange of information so that RTU students are fully aware of their opportunities to improve their skills in a scientific field by getting involved in any of the Student Associations or RTU labs.