Mälardalens Student Union was founded in 1979, which was two years after Eskilstuna Västerås University had been formed. At that time, the student union was called Eskilstuna/Västerås Studentkår. From the beginning, the student union was made up of a board of directors and various underlying branches that were active where the college conducted its activities. At that time, for example, there were two branches in Västerås and one in Eskilstuna. In 1981, an evaluation of the organization was carried out, with the result that the entire organization was revised.
As a result of the 1981 evaluation, an organizational change began in 1983. At that time, the use of committees and two bureau was established, one in each locality. Until 1983, it was voluntary to join the student union. That changed when Sweden introduced a compulsory student union. In 1989, the university changed its name to Mälardalen University, which was due to the fact that there were university branches in Ludvika, Katrineholm and Nyköping. In connection with the university’s name change, the student union changed its name to Mälardalens Student Union.
Mälardalens Student Union started the 1990s by establishing the labour market fair Högvarv in 1990. During the fair, all focus is on making contacts between students and working life. Even today, Högvarv is one of the student union’s most popular events and annually attracts about fifty companies that want to get in touch with the workforce of the future. In addition, it gives the career-hungry students the opportunity to create their future already during their studies. During the 1990s, the student union also organized another grand event called the Union Train every year. The relay, which consisted of cycling, canoeing and running, stretched between Västerås and Eskilstuna. At its peak, the competition attracted about 600 people who either competed or participated as officials. For a long time, the student union had only half-time salaries in the various positions. This changed in the second half of the nineties when several paid people switched to working full-time. Changes also took place within the student union’s education monitoring, which went from being divided into HSV (Humanities / Social Sciences / Care) and NT (Natural Sciences / Technology) to being managed by one and the same board member. For a long time, the student union had difficulty establishing its activities in the smaller towns. In 1997, the problem was solved by the university closing all branches to focus on the two locations of Eskilstuna and Västerås. In 1997, the student union also abolished its large meetings, which until then had been the highest decision-making body, and instead the union council that exists today was established. In connection with the university’s introduction of academies (HVV, UKK, EST and IDT), the student union’s council and board were also adapted to optimally achieve an even distribution in the academies’ influence in the student union’s activities. In 1997, the new union building in Västerås was completed, which had taken four years to realize. Until the mid-nineties, the university’s premises in Västerås were located in the center, where Växhuset today has its premises. Until this moment, the union building had also had its premises in the center at Kopparbergsvägen 13. There had long been discussion about a new union house, as the premises at the time were considered too small. When the university moved from the center, the student union also chose to build a new union building on campus. It is this union house that is still used by the student union today. Sadly, 1997 was also the last year that the Union Train was arranged. Around the same time as the new union building in Västerås was built, the student union began to look for a new building for the union building in Eskilstuna because it was considered that the student union also needed larger premises there. In Eskilstuna, the new union building in Studenternas hus was inaugurated in 1999 in connection with the student union’s twentieth anniversary. After a vote among the members, Mälardalens Student Union joined the students’ central organization Sweden’s United Student Unions (SFS) in 1999. At the same time, the student union also joined OSS, which is a network within SFS consisting of small and medium-sized student unions. Since joining, the Student Union has hosted an autumn conference for SFS and two OSS meetings.
The E4 was formed as an association between Mälardalens Student Union, Södertörn’s student union, Malmö’s student union and Jönköping’s student union in the early 2000s. The main idea of the collaboration was for the student unions to meet every semester and exchange ideas, thoughts and experiences before the SFS council, which is arranged every year. This is in order to build consensus and thereby have greater influence at national level. In the autumn of 2000, the Student Olympiad event was organized for the first time. The competition, which still exists today, is aimed at new students at the university. The competition is based on various games in the center of Västerås. The goal of the event is to establish long-term contacts and get good work started between students, society and business. In the autumn of 2006, the Student Olympiad was organized for the first time also in Eskilstuna and was there an annual event until 2009. In 2008, the student union got new premises in Eskilstuna that were adjacent to the university’s buildings. The construction, which was a rebuild of an old building, started in October 2007 and was completed in the summer of 2008. In those premises was the student restaurant Dekår, which had both day and evening activities. In connection with this, the student union’s office moved to the so-called “Q-building”, where we had offices until 2021. Unfortunately, due to financial difficulties, the business was closed down in 2010.
In connection with the abolition of the compulsory student union in 2010 and the financial consequences that came with the abolition, the student union’s organization was revised and most paid assignments disappeared. Thus, the organizational structure with committees was also removed. In 2010, the Student Olympiad in Eskilstuna was replaced by the Evening Assignment. The competition is an annual event organized by the student union for the new students at Mälardalen University. The event consists of a team competition where the new students together with their line associations compete to get around a number of stations in the fastest time. The purpose is to create a community between the students who study the same education and welcome them to Eskilstuna. During the time the students compete, they also have time to get to know the center core. The evening usually ends with a pub evening at one of the taverns in Eskilstuna. Eskilstuna and Västerås were named Student City of the Year by SFS in 2012. The reason for the decision was the outstanding cooperation that was conducted between the university, the municipalities and the student union. On the third to fifth of May 2013, the student union hosted the SFS council meeting with about 300 union representatives from all over the country. The Student Union was also one of five student unions in Sweden that in 2013 were chosen to run the project How it works. The project was about accessibility of both the physical environment and information in the union world. For the implementation of the project, Mälardalens Student Union was awarded the Wahlénska Prize, a prize that the SFS office annually awards to those who have been a great support for them. In the spring of 2015, Mälardalens Student Union, together with nine other student unions and nations, was part of an additional project called Best Party. The project is an initiative taken by SFS and IQ and aims to create a student life where alcohol can be included but is not in focus. In 2015, Gefle Student Union also joined the E4.
In 1990, the labour market fair Högvarv was arranged for the first time and even today it is arranged in Västerås. This picture is taken from when the fair was arranged in 2017.
Union building in Västerås
In 1997, the student union got a new union building on campus in Västerås. The building took four years to realize and to this day the student union’s restaurant operates there under the name Kårhuset G6.
In 2010, the Evening Mission took place for the first time. This picture is taken from one of the branches that was featured in 2016.
Student city 2012/2013
In 2012/2013, Eskilstuna and Västerås were named student city of the year. The reason for the decision was the outstanding cooperation that was conducted between the university, the municipalities, and the Student Union.