Thanks to MAEUR for letting us as the students of the University Council write a piece for your blog. As the student members of the University Council, we are representing all Erasmus students on matters central to our university. We are an elected body, so we strive to represent as many students as possible. However, getting our message out there is sometimes hard. As is the case in other representative functions, the way we as UC-students position ourselves and brand ourselves to the Erasmian community is very important. How can we represent students properly if they don’t know anything about us or don’t know what we are doing? This question of visibility and positioning is of course one that MAEUR members are uniquely situated to help answer. How do we better present the UC as a body that is meant to serve the entire university community? We are therefore very grateful to be given that opportunity here to do just that.
The University Council is the highest participatory body of the Erasmus University. Every year there are elections in which the students of our university elect 12 student members to the Council, who are joined by 12 employee members. Together we advise, consent and take initiatives on a variety of subjects concerning our university. These include but are not limited to sustainability, student wellbeing, Covid-19 issues, budget and appointment procedures of deans. The Council works in 5-week cycles, in which an agenda full of items is discussed and being questioned by us. Each cycle ends with a consultation meeting with the Executive Board of the university where they answer to and explain the reasoning or execution behind certain policies.
One of the challenges that may be of interest to members of MAEUR is the use and protection of data in education. For example, how do you accurately measure the level of student well-being in the student population? Which measures can you take to help certain identified problems and how do you communicate those measures? Or, on a broader scope, in what way does the priority of student well-being fit into the brand of the university, their strategy and the products they offer? These are questions that are hard to answer as individual University Council members. That is why we seek as much input from the community as possible, whether they are marketing students or otherwise. So please feel free to reach out to one of us if you have any ideas, issues or possible solutions to problems students are facing!
We hope that you now feel better informed on what the UC does and how it operates. For more please refer to https://www.eur.nl/en/about-eur/organisation-administration/participation/university-council. And remember: to involve and engage with the wider Erasmian community has always been a top priority for the UC. Therefore, our meetings are open to everyone interested to join. If you want to attend, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and you will receive an invitation to our next plenary session. For the time being, all meetings take place online via Microsoft Teams every other Tuesday. We hope to see you there very soon!