Sastamala Community College
Sastamalan Opisto (Sastamala Community College) is a non-profit Finnish open adult education centre. The college welcomes all learners, young and old and offers opportunities for a wide variety of recreational activities and study. Learning is largely self-motivated and, as a rule, not aimed at achieving a formal qualification.
Sastamalan Opisto delivers more than 1.000 courses for 4 800 learners each year, with about 24.000 teaching hours within the rural town of Sastamala, hiring about 230 hourly paid teachers each year.
The courses cover a wide range of areas including life skills, music, the expressive arts, crafts, Information Technology, languages, cooking, sports and well-being. In addition, the college runs a Children and Young People’s Basic Arts Education programme with a national curriculum in drama (theatre studies), arts and crafts, art (illustrative arts) and dance. These subjects have a national curriculum. The students who take the art education studies at the college are 7-18 years of age.
One of the college’s main tasks is to ensure the maintenance and development of creativity in the interest of the people, cultural industries and the community as a whole. Not only does the college offer a wide variety of opportunities for learning about art, practising art and experiencing art in college classes, it also supports cultural actions such as arts exhibitions, concerts, theatre productions and other events. One example is the Children and Young People’s Book and Culture event taking place each year in November. The college is the home for many choirs and orchestras.
Sastamalan Opisto acts as an umbrella organisation for the third sector operators; associations, self-help groups and community groups. As a community college Sastamalan Opisto is tasked with the fostering of people’s engagement with their communities and therefore works closely with village associations.
The Green Bridges work group consists of 4 members of permanent staff and 3-4 freelance teachers as well as a group of volunteers and adult learners.
Link to College site: