Faculty Council Students
The Faculty of Science and Engineering, which consists of the Maastricht Science Program, the Department of Data Science and University College Maastricht has a history of being apolitical and not very interested in politics, especially student politics. Yet this year, a total of three parties have presented representatives for the Faculty Council, with each different points they want to change in these faculties.
With a total of 6 seats to be filled, here are the three parties fighting for them and what they want to implement.
KAN & USM
Let us start with the party that has the most candidates on the list. KAN, the Climate Action Network (or Klimaat Actie Netwerk in Dutch), in collaboration with the United Students Maastricht are presenting a total of ten candidates, of which an overwhelming majority are from UCM. While some of them may be list pushers, it still offers a maximum variety of people to get elected to the Faculty Council.
KAN of course stands for equality and sustainability, with the environment and a healthy wellbeing as the main banner of their party. They have already been very active during the year, where they managed to create various events and collaborate in numerous projects such as the Foodcoop, a way of getting local and fresh food to everyone and others, all under the umbrella of the Sustainability Hub of UM.
As we can see, KAN is the green party that faces one of the most important issues there is in this current world and embraces this as their leading motive while also watching out for the (mental) health of everyone.
NovUM’s program is more varied and touches different things. They want to see some changes on the small scale of the environment by for example putting in more free water fountains and trying to find new ways to lower gas usage at UM.
They are also working towards a better gender balance through various diversity events and want to increase the number of non-male actors in positions of power as chairs and members of the different councils. Vis-à-vis mental health they also want to implement concrete solutions such as silent spaces where students can meditate, pray or simply get away from all the noise in the world for a short time.
Another main issue in Maastricht that NovUM is keen on tackling, is the housing crisis. For this, they take a look up north to our colleagues in Scandinavia notably they want to implement similar measures to those taken by Stockholm university: building micro housing to curb the sheer lack of available housing for students. For those who then cannot get a place there, they want to reimplement compensation for those who have to travel from farther away to come to class.
Purely on the everyday study life, NovUM wants recorded lectures to be available for everyone and always as well as putting the center back on student wellbeing through for example allowing them more leniency towards resit exams or have more funds allocated to research projects. Finally they also want to reimplement the UCM scholarship for non-EU students, as they already have higher tuition fees to pay.
DOPE is probably the party with the least active presence on social media, yet they are the oldest and most successful party to date.
This year, they are running for a university that is more lenient towards students. Concrete measures include optimising contact hours with academic advisors to ensure a useful curriculum, softening the attendance requirements, but also ensure that the budget is better allocated towards students and their projects.
Talking about mental health, they want to work towards more personal contact between tutors and students so that tutors are better informed and can be a comforting presence for those struggling.
Finally, for sustainability and the environment, because this is a problem that simply cannot be ignored by anyone in this day and age, they want to decrease the number of device free courses, have less printed course material and encourage everyone to recycle printed material.
All in all we can see three main themes across all parties, with each one trying to implement it in different ways. So it really is just up to you to choose the right one, that works best for you and that will enable you to have the best possible life in the upcoming year. To the polls!