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More internationals should be on boards, says RUG

Proposal Calimero adopted

More internationals should be on boards, says RUG

The RUG wants to use study advisers to stimulate international students to do board work for a year. Lijst Calimero originally came up with the idea, but the board of directors has adopted it.
By Anne de Vries / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen

There are more than thirty thousand students at the RUG, and seven thousand of these are international students. But internationals aren’t represented on the student associations’ boards and councils, says Lijst Calimero’s faction chair Floor Buigel. More than eighty percent of students doing board work is Dutch.

This needs to change, Calimero says, because Dutch students don’t act in internationals’ interests as well as internationals do. ‘We can’t put ourselves in their shoes and understand what internationals go through in Groningen’, says Buigel.

Committee grant

Calimero says doing board work for a year should be made more appealing to international students. During the university council meeting last week, they proposed offering them the same arrangements that Dutch students get. Dutch students are given a committee grant for their board work, and they don’t have to go to classes or – in some cases – pay tuition fees for the year. In the meantime, internationals students have to earn at least thirty ECTS a year to keep their visa.

Alternatively, they propose that both Dutch and international students are awarded ECTS in exchange for doing board work. Students are currently given a certificate of participation for their work, ‘but international companies, for instance, have a hard time understanding what these mean, so we’d like to provide some context’, says Buigel.

Finally, Calimero wants to properly inform internationals about board work. They want to engage study advisers who can point out the extracurricular activities to the internationals. ‘They’ll be able to tell them where to find their community and how to join.’

No ECTS

The board of directors only adopted this last proposal and made a promise to inform the study advisers. Board president Jouke de Vries said during the council meeting that the other proposals need to worked out further.

The board also said they’d consider subsidies for international students. However, they felt that awarding ECTS in exchange for board work was too much.

Nederlands

01 October 2019 | 2-10-2019, 10:57
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