This week, the university will become the ground of an epic battle of huge proportions. The student elections are here again. You can choose the people who are going to represent you in either the faculty council or the university council. They can have direct influence on policy making in the university, thus making these elections extremely important. Presidential elections are nothing compared to this. But what party should you go for?
There are two big players in the field: Dope and NovUM. Candidates from Dope can be found running for the university council as well as the faculty council. NovUM runs for the university council and at FHML, FL as well as FHS for the faculty council.
I asked Dope member Danny Janssen, who runs for the university council, to give his view of the main focus points of Dope in these elections:
We as DOPE have been striving to improve education for the past years as we find that that excellence in education is the top priority for the University.To achieve this we want to, for instance, introduce University wide web lectures and thus being up to date to (recent) changes in the field. As excellence in education is one of DOPE’s visions, we furthermore believe that grading transparency is one of the strategies to achieve this objective. Another important point is the improvement of facilties, this does not only include the amount of study places, but also improvement of overal ICT facilities and of course the sports facilities in Randwyck. Our third main point is internationalization by trying to strive, amongst others, for a more fair distribution of nationalities on a faculty level instead of on the University level. Our last main point is to keep up with the government developments like the ‘langstudeerdersboete’, abolishment of the study grant in your masters and by cutting back the different student boards by 30%. Between the Monday the 21st of May and Friday the 25th of May I would like to have your vote to make the above mentioned points happen!
I also asked NovUM member Veronika Brantova, also in the run for the university council, if she could do the same.
NovUM is a political student representation party. The elected representatives of NovUM work in the faculty and university councils. The vision of NovUM is based on four pillars: Quality of UM, Accessbility, Integration and Sustainabilitz. We highly value the international learning environment we are and the opportunities provided at Maastricht University. It is our task to ensure that this is upheld. Beyond that, our aim is to enhance communication channels and to incorporate the students voice into the university’s decision-making process.
The party program can be found here
Normally I myself would prefer to choose a party that is visible in as many faculties as possible. This way, a university wide policy can be developed more consistently, which makes the above mentioned choices the two most obvious ones. There are however two or three (?) new players in the field of the university council, of which I do not know a lot.
More info on UMatter’s can be found here and a little movie about their most important points if posted below
Arnoldas Pikzirnis’ main points is actions not promises. Pretty decent slogan, although the last time I checked promises were an obligation to do or to not do something. Making promises thus has the cool advantage that you know what kind of actions will follow. More info can be found here.
According to the Observant, Rotislav Rusev is also participating. However, he did not hand in anything regarding his party program for the website of the UM nor did he show up at the election debates. Needless to say, I can’t form a detailed opinion about him or give you a party program.
Because reading about parties in other faculties does not have a lot of advantages for you, I will refrain from doing so. On top of this, I value my time more than to read through politically correct party programs of a faculty that I have got nothing to do with. I will however, do you the pleasure to give you a direct link to the page of the university that will give you all information about all of them:
————————–Procedure and time-line————————–
All parties will be parading through the faculties and the libraries from the 21st to the 25th of May. You can ask them anything you like to get a better picture of what they can do for you. You all have two votes; one for the University Council and one for the Faculty Council. Use your vote wisely and do just vote on how cute or nice the person is that is asking you to vote on him or her (I have seen this way too often in previous years). We all love to complain about stuff that the university could do better, so here’s your chance.
I was born and raised in a town called Geleen, sited between the hills of the Dutch province of Limburg. I'm a 25 year old Psychology Master student and a member of the Erasmus Student Network (ESN). I will enjoy shedding my critical light on life itself and share it with you while I am at it.