VUUR has made some promo-clips so we can inform you about our standpoints at the midst of the university council election. Our priorities lie with: student well-being, quality education, accessibility, an attractive university campus and sustainability. Check out our campaign clips here! Also, learn more about our other crazy-ass stunts. Want to learn more? Read more in our election programme. Vote VUUR, passion for your education.
The psychological health of our students has been on the decline for quit some time now. According to a recent study students today even have a higher risk of developing a burn-out than working people do. The pressure to achieve has increased sharply in the last few years. The University Council has achieved that there will be a taskforce ‘student well-being’ installed. This is a good start VUUR want this taskforce to:
- Break open the taboo on student-depressions and student burn-outs. It is essential this will be made generally acceptable for conversation. You are not alone!
- Organize workshops concerning stress so that we can prevent burn-outs early on.
- Makes the student psychologist more accessible. Long waiting periods and costs should be eliminated entirely.
Small scale education
Utrecht University is a large uni. This can have its advantages. But, to quote national treasure Johan Cruijf, every advantage comes with its disadvantages. Lecture halls bulge out, workgroups are also getting larger. We are not a number! VUUR stands for:
- Small scale education. So we don’t have to bring binoculars to the lecture.
- Flex studying. For student boards, athletes, volunteer caregivers and other students who are not able to study fulltime it should be possible to pay per ECTS (60 ECTS = €2.060, – for EU students). On the long term this should be possible for every student, so we can study a little slower without having to pay full price.
- Earn ECTS with problem-oriented assignments regarding societal problems. This means your effort will not disappear in a drawer somewhere. Together we can make the world a better place, one step at a time.
- Record all lectures! So we can learn the study material again at home, at our own speed.
- Interactive education. So we can all join in.
- Intermediate evaluations. Course evaluations are a useful tool in making courses better, but these improvements are implemented the next year. When it is too late for you. This is a shame; we plea for evaluations halfway through the course.
The University is a place where people of all possible sizes and measures should be welcome. But it sometimes seems as if the UU has a subscription on white young people with educated parents. VUUR wants the UU to work on its inclusiveness. Too many people have a hard time reaching college. Think about inland minority groups for example, or people in a wheelchair, autistic or depressed students. College is also getting more expensive, so the lower socio-economic class is barely making it to uni. VUUR pleas for:
- Prohibition on selections costs. Some studies are more competitive than others, so an intake exam might occur. VUUR thinks it is unwise to charge students for the costs of this selection procedure.
- No phantom selection. Some selection procedures are a hoax. In some instances nothing will be done with your motivation letter and selection procedure. We are going to stop these measures that unnecessarily discourage people to study.
- Smart internationalization. The UU is an international institute, which we encourage. However, this occurred rather rapidly and the UU is ill-equipped for the changes it is now making. Teachers do not always speak English that well, international students are struggling to find housing. The UU bares full responsibility for these kinds of things.
- Assumptions and bigotry are also (unconsciously) working in the scientific field. The UU should take the lead in ensuring anonymity. Not only in doing research, but also when taking an exam, applying for a job or selecting students.
- Studying with a disability. The UU should provide more guidance for those who could benefit from this. Especially uni buildings in the city centre are by no means wheelchair accessible. We could also provide more guidance for autistic or dyslexic students.
A large portion of our student study on the Uithof, and some also live there. That’s a party, right? In reality it’s not as fun as it sounds or could be. The campus supermarket, the SPAR has a monopoly position, which means they are overcharging our students. There is barely any music; a bar, club or lunchroom. If you are on the Uithof on a weekend day it seems as if you are on a deserted terrain, as you might see in a western or horror movie. VUUR wants to lighten up the Uithof:
- A lively campus. We are going to work towards dining and drinking facilities on the Uithof, more specifically a roof terras. This will be good for the ambiance.
- Affordable grosieries. We will lobby for an extra supermarket, which is in high-demand. The current SPAR is somewhat small, but also overpriced.
- Green. The Uithof is filled with grand high-modernist buildings, which can be a welcoming sight. It can also appear a little bit shabby and we can feel alienated from nature. VUUR pleas for more green on the Uithof campus.
- Meeting spots. Of course, you can meet up by the benches in front of the uni library. But where are you going to meet up on a rainy day? You are in the middle of nowhere after all. If it is up to us we will create more meet-up hotspots so you have plenty of spots to chill or work together. The Vagant is a good spot, which is planning to close! We will not let this happen.
Right before and during the election our candidates wear these awesome VUUR-sweaters. This way you can see us coming from miles away.
On the Nobelstraat hangs this fantastic VUUR-banner. Have you spotted it yet?
Our classic. You can spot the VUUR logo on your way to the Uithof. Do not worry, it will wash away. Still a good reminder who to vote for in the upcomming elections.