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On Thursday 17 December 2020, the President of the Republic appointed Member of Parliament Jussi Saramo as Minister of Education. Saramo is a member of Vasemmistoliitto (Left Alliance) which currently comprises part of the coalition government led by Prime Minister Sanna Marin. Saramo’s appointment is temporary with a mandate to cover the maternity leave of the sitting Minister of Education (and the Leader of the Left Alliance party) Li Andersson. Minister Saramo will serve as Chair of the Finnish Government’s working group on Competence, Education, Culture and Innovation and will be a member of the Government’s working group on EU policy.
Additionally, the Finnish Government and EDUFI (The Finnish National Agency for Higher Education) announced that, as of 1 January 2021, two major scholarship programmes aimed at international postgraduate students will be merged into one centralised programme. Up until now, international doctoral students working on their dissertations were recipients of the EDUFI Fellowship, while the Finnish Government Scholarship Pool awarded funding to taught and research elements of postgraduate studies in Finland. The merging of these two programmes will streamline the application process for prospective students and will also ensure greater coherence in the review and awarding of postgraduate scholarships for international postgraduates in Finland. The new programme will have a rolling deadline and applications will be accepted throughout the year.