What is a trade union?
Professional associations – or trades unions – are organizations with a professional staff who work on common goals such as higher pay, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring, firing and promotion of workers, benefits, and better working condition. The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members and negotiates labour contracts with employers.
Trade unions and students
It is a good idea to join a trades union while studying. Most professional organizations provide the opportunity for a student membership. Student membership often has a range of practical benefits, e.g. cheap student insurances, job seeking advice and reduced prices on books.
Make sure that the trade union has English speaking consultants and activities in English.
What should you choose?
You choose yourself whether you wish to be a member of a trade union, and which union you choose. There are, however, professional links to individual unions that it may be relevant to consider, if you want to be in receipt of various benefits that might strengthen your professionalism and allow you the best possible individual advice.
Unions and unemployment funds are two independent instances. So you can easily be a member of an unemployment fund without being a member of a union.
If you are doubt as to the professional organization that you wish to join, you are welcome to contact AAU Career to seek guidance and advice.