Become an active student!
Are you looking forward to participate in a committee of your association or to organize a student event? There are plenty of activities for you to grow your skills and where help is really appreciated.
The extent of activism is all up to you. Very handy if you first like to explore if student activism can be combined with your study programme. Almost every association has a small committee you can be active in for 2-4 hours a week. Via this so-called ‘small activism’, you can get a sneak preview of your tasks and the expectations people have from you.
When you are looking for a bigger challenge, you can choose to start working for a larger committee. The bigger the activity, the bigger the tasks and responsibilities you get. In this case you will have to put more efforts and time in your committee. Be aware: the definitions of committee, board and organizations don’t say anything about the amount of hours you need to invest. Therefore, always inquire about this matter to the current board of this student organization before making promises.
Large committees and boards
Instead of a small committee, you can also become a part-time active student. Approximately half of your week will be dedicated to your study, the other half to your committee or board. It is definitely not impossible, but it will get hard to keep on studying fulltime. It will demand much from your time management skills. With the help of your study counsellor you can find out if your planning is realistic or you can sort out what courses could be temporarily delayed. It is possible to take an academic year off as well, so you can work for your student organization during one full year. Especially students who become a fulltime active student, choose this option.
Fulltime student activism
Having a break from your study for a year to focus completely on your new challenge: a well-considered decision resulting from many prior thoughts. Most likely you already participated in one or several committees and now it feels you need an upgrade in your development. But is it something that fits me? What is the role of my parents in this decision? Will I still keep my social life? Before you start your student sabbatical, it is wise to have thought about these matters. Listen to the suggestions of people close to you. Keep in mind though that you are the only person who can eventually make the decision. Remember that every year hundreds of Dutch students choose to be fulltime board members. So with the experience we have, we would say it is definitely feasible to do this during your study.
While you have a fulltime board year, you will grow to the max! We offer a free training programme to help you with your personal development: the Board Improvement Programme. In this programme you will get various professional training sessions to improve certain skills. We also like to give you a hand in becoming more aware of all the learning experiences you will get during your board year. With these experiences it is possible to write a reflection essay at the end of your year. If you send this essay to us, you may get an activism recognition when you are graduated.
Financial compensation for your efforts
Being an active student is something that may only give you improvement. The whole experience, including all things you have learned, is the most important victory. A small expense allowance is for students quite appealing. For this reason, the University of Twente, in certain cases of activism, offers a financial compensation: the activism grant.