After a tour of the campus, the group of refugees, originally from countries such as Syria, Iran or Eritrea, had lunch with students in Bastille. ‘Today is the opening event, which should help the refugees to get familiar with our university. After this, we will hold a lecture on a different topic every month,’ explains Maike Fellmoser from the Connecting Hands Committee.
‘The first lecture will focus on the upcoming elections, on how democracy and the government works in the Netherlands, what political parties there are and so on,’ lists Fellmoser. ‘The other lectures will be about science, but also about what opportunities refugees have for studying at a Dutch university. The lectures are naturally in English, but they will not be on any high academic level. Their main purpose is to motivate the asylum seekers to go back to a university, connect them with students and help them integrate.’