Kuva: Jussi P. Aalto
The main events of the Conferment Ceremony are spread over three days, starting from Thursday the 25th and lasting until Saturday the 27th of May. These days will be intensive, and they include several different kinds of events and countless emotional and memorable moments. However, the first steps of the Conferment Ceremony are taken already with the Flower’s Day celebration on the 13th of May when all promovendi gather together for the first time. Preparations for the Conferment Ceremony include also a briefing and dance rehearsals for all promovendi in April.

Before the Conferment Ceremony

  • Briefing on 18th of April
    The Conferment Ceremony Briefing on 18th April at 18.00 pm, which is open to everyone, goes through the programme and the practices of the ceremony. During the briefing, it’s also possible for the audience to ask questions from the organizing committee. The briefing is held on the main building’s big ceremony hall (Unioninkatu 34, entrance from the Senate square side).
  • Dance Rehearsals 19thd of April - 22nd of May
    Before the Conferment Ceremony there will be dance rehearsals for the Conferment Ball. The rehearsals are especially important for master promovendi (and their companions) who want to participate the masters’ contredanse française. The contredanse française is a 7-part figure dance which is performed in the Conferment Ball. In addition, there will be a general dance rehearsal for those not taking part in the contredanse française. The first rehearsals are in April. The schedule is available below. One must commit to rehearsals.
    Place: Unisport Kumpula, gymnasium, section C (Väinö Auerin katu 11, Helsinki)
    Tuesday 9th May at 18.00-20.00 pm
    Tuesday 16th May 18.00-20.00 pm
    Place: the German School Helsinki, gymnasium (Malminkatu 14, Helsinki)
    (NB: people attending these rehearsals do not attend general dance practices, but they rehearse the other ballroom dances at the rehearsal for the masters’ contredanse française)
    Wednesday 19th April at 17.00-20.00 pm
    Wednesday 26th April at 17.00-19.00 pm
    Thursday 27th April at 17.00-19.00 pm
    Wednesday 3rd May at 17.00-19.00 pm
    Thursday 4th May at17.00-19.00 pm
    Wednesday 10th May at 17.00-19.00 pm
    Thursday 11th May at 17.00-19.00 pm
    Thursday 18th May at 17.00-19.00 pm
    Friday 19th May at 17.00-19.00 pm (cancelled)
    (rehearsal of the guest- and doctoral polonaise, final rehearsal of the masters’ contredanse française, final rehearsal of the other ballroom dances)
    Place: Old Student House (Mannerheimintie 3, Helsinki)
    Monday 22nd May at 17-21 pm
    At 17.15-18.30 pm Final rehearsal of the master’s contredanse française
    At 18.30-19.30 pm Rehearsal of the guest- and doctoral polonaise
    At 19.30-20.30 pm Final rehearsal of the other ballroom dances
  • Review of the Conferment Matricula 10th - 28th of April
    The Conferment Committee will edit the Conferment Matricula from the personal information the promovendi have supplied in the registration form. A draft of thee matricula text will be available for viewing and correction at the Conferment Ceremony’s office in the end of April.
  • Pre Wreath-weaving
    Before the actual Conferment days, an event will be held for those master promovendi attending without a wreath-weaver to produce their own wreaths with the help of the Official Wreath-weaver and the Conferment Committee.

    The pre-wreath-weaving workshop will be held at the nation floor of Ostrobotnia (Töölönkatu 3A, 5th floor) at 16–21. One should count about two hours for producing a wreath. Registrations via separate form.

Flower’s Day, Saturday 13th of May

Flower’s Day is a joyful and light-hearted spring day when the master promovendi, gather to select the Official Wreath-weaver, whose duties include watching over the tying of the Masters’ wreaths. When the selection has been done, the promovendi form a procession and go together to propose the selected Wreath-weaver. It is presumed that the person accepts the proposal, after which the procession brings him/her to be presented to the rest of the promovendi.

The day continues in form of a picnic at the Kumtähti field as well as a Flower’s Day Lunch in Hotel Presidentti.

  • Master promovendi
    At 10.30, the master promovendi gather at the Finnish Meteorological Institute at Kumpula Campus for a meeting where the Official Wreath-weaver is elected. After the meeting, the participants form a procession to go and propose the selected person at the Kumpula manor. The meeting is held at the Finnish Meteorological Institute (Erik Palménin aukio 1). Unfortunately we cannot take any more participants for the meeting due to the limited space. All the participants are welcome to join the presenting of the Official Wreath-weaver at the Kumpula Botanic Garden at 11.15.
  • All promovendi and their companions
    At 11.30, the Official Wreath-weaver will be presented at the Botanic Garden, after which
    the participants continue in a procession to Flower’s Day picnic which is held at the Kumtähti Field. The picnic includes speeches, the traditional Maamme anthem and raising a glass to the spring.

    At 13, for those regiresterd for the Lunch, the Flower’s Day continues with a tram ride to the Presidentti Hotel (Eteläinen Rautatienkatu 4) where the meal is served.

The Day of wreath-weaving and sword-sharpening, Thursday, 25th of May

In the afternoon, the promovendi assemble for the Conferment Act rehearsal which takes place at the Great Hall of the University. It is essential for all promovendi to take part in the rehearsal so that the Conferment Act and its choreography will go well. Promovendi cannot participate in the Conferment Act unless they have taken part in the rehearsal.

For the masters, the evening continues with the Wreath-weaving Dinner. For the doctors, a reception by the rector of the University is followed by the Sword-sharpening Dinner.

  • Master promovendi
    At 16.30 is a Conferment Act Rehearsal, mandatory for all the master promovendi, at the Main Building of the University. Entrance from the Aleksanterinkatu side (Aleksanterinkatu 5). The promovendi gather at the lobby in front of the Great Hall. After the rehearsal, the participants move by bus transport to the Wreath-weaving Dinner at Crowne Plaza (Mannerheimintie 50). At 18.30, the Wreath-weaving Dinner at Crowne Plaza. The events ends roughly at 23.
  • Wreath-weavers (the companions of the masters and jubilee masters)
    At 15.00, the Wreath-weaving Workshop begins at Casa Academica (Perhonkatu 6, 2nd floor).
    The wreath-weavers must be accompanied with a sewing needle, strong black thread, scissors and a thimble if wanted. All the wreath-weavers will produce the wreaths by sewing the bay leaves to an existing frame. The Official Wreath-weaver and the previous ones are there to help producing the wreaths. Generally it takes about two hours to produce a master’s wreath.

    The wreaths must not be taken home, but they need to be given to the conferment marshals.

    At 18.00, a bus ride will bring the wreath-weavers to the Dinner at Crowne Plaza.
  • Doctor promovendi
    At 15.00 is a Conferment Act Rehearsal mandatory for all the doctor promovendi (separate from the masters’ rehearsal) at the Main Building of the University. Entrance from the Aleksanterinkatu side (Aleksanterinkatu 5). The promovendi will gather at the lobby in front of the Great Hall. The doctors must be accompanied with their doctoral hats and swords, labeled with the promovendus’ name. The insignia will be left at the Great Hall for the night, thus the hat and the sword must not be taken home!

    At 17.00 the rector of the University holds a reception for the honorary doctors, jubilee doctors and the doctor promovendi as well as their companions at the Press Hall (Lehtisali) of the Main Building. After the reception, the participants move by foot to the Sword-sharpening DInner at restaurant Bank (Unioninkatu 20).

    At 18.30, the Sword-sharpening DInner is held at restaurant Bank. The event ends roughly at 23.
  • Sword-whetters (the companions of the doctor and jubilee promovendi)
    At 15.00 begins the Act Rehearsal for the doctor promovendi. The companions are not required to attend the rehearsal, but are welcome to observe from the audience.

    At 17.00, rector’s reception at the Press Hall of the Main Building.

    At 18.30 the Sword-sharpening Dinner at restaurant Bank.

The Day of the Conferment Act, Friday 26th of May

On Friday morning, it is finally time for the main celebration, the Conferment Act. It is a solemn and dignified ceremony, where the promovendi receive the symbols of their academic status. One after another they go up to the Conferrer, who grants them their academic insignia: either the Master’s wreath or the Doctoral hat and sword.

After the act, the attendees form a procession and move either to the ecumenical service held at the Helsinki Cathedral or alternatively to a secular service held in the Great Hall of the Nationa Library.

  • The Conferment Act
    At 08.45 the young masters (those who are promoted for the first time) arrive at the Main Building of the University (Aleksanterinkatu 5) with their companions. The young doctors and their companions arrive at 09.15. Invited guests and relatives at 9.20., after which the Jubilee masters and doctors arrive at 09.30.

    It is extremely important that all the participants arrive to the Act on their specific time slots.

    Note! The Conferment Act is a long event, where the promovendi need to stand up several hours straight. To cope with the event it is essential to eat a hearty breakfast. One can also reserve for example some sugar cubes in the concealed pocket of the dress. No items need to be carried during the Act as all the valuables can be stored in the guarded cloakroom in the Lobby. Also handbags or purses are also not carried during the Act or the following Services. Professional photographers take care of preserving all the Conferment events, thus taking photos in the Act is restricted only for the official photographers.
  • The Ecumenical Church Service or an Alternative Secular Service
    At 14.00, a procession takes the promovendi from the Main Building towards the Helsinki Cathedral and National Library. Those who choose the Secular Service will be guided to the Great Hall of the National Library.

    At 15.30, after both of the Services, a procession heads back to the Main Building of the University where the promovendi are given their Conferment Diplomas and the mactriculas. After this, the participants have some time to prepare for the Dinner.
  • The Conferment Dinner
    At 17.45, the masters arrive at the Conferment Dinner, the doctors arrive at 18, and the jubilee masters and doctors as well as guests arrive at 18.15. The Dinner will be held at the Finlandia Hall (Mannerheimintie 13 a). The event ends roughly at midnight.

The Day of the Cnferment Excursion and Ball,  Saturday 27th of May

  • The Conferment Excursion
    At 10.15, the participants arrive at Kauppatori (Market Square) to leave for the Conferment Excursion, which takes form of a marine cruise around the archipelago of Helsinki. The right ships can be found at Lyypekinlaituri (near the Old Market Hall) and by looking for marshals and other participants wearing white student caps. Remember also to bring your student cap if you have one! The ships cannot wait, so please arrive on time. After the cruise lunch will be served at Kaivohuone in Kaivopuisto (Iso Puistotie 1). The programme will last until around 14.
  • The Conferment Ball
    At 17.45, the master promovendi arrive at the Ball at the Old Student House (Mannerheimintie 3). The doctor promovendi arrive at 18.15. A buffet dinner will be served after the ceremonial dances, around 21 o’clock. The event ends at 02 in the morning.
  • Nocturnal Procession and the Greeting of the Sun
    At 02.15 after the Ball, the Conferment entourage heads to spread the Conferment Spirit in the form of the Nocturnal Procession. The Procession strolls around the city center finally ending up in front of the Main Building of the University, where a speech will be held to greet the rising sun, at 04.16.