‘Going the extra mile to provide and inform’

| Rense Kuipers

Crisis or not, the elections for the University Council are scheduled for next week. This year, students have a choice of four parties for a seat in university politics. In this mini-series, the leading candidates take turns to present their respective parties. This second episode: Michael David of the new party Genesis.

Michael David (on the left) and Paul Owukju

Face and voice of the party

‘Our name stands for a new beginning. Our goals are to provide and inform, meaning that we want to provide the UT community with relevant platforms and to make sure people use these platforms. We are different from other parties in the sense that we want to go the extra mile to achieve what we set out to do.’

Three focal points

1. ‘Internationalization is an important theme for us. We think the promotion of learning possibilities could use an extra push. Especially learning Dutch. Once you go off campus and go shopping in the city centre, you have to be able to hold your own. The UT has to create a good learning environment for this.’

2. ‘We have good facilities at the UT that could improve the mental wellbeing of students, but either people aren’t interested or they don’t know of them. This also comes down to providing and informing, including connecting students to undertake more voluntary activities together. We tend to forget to do volunteer work when we’re busy studying, even though these activities are so important.’

3. ‘With information sharing, we want to really connect all students. We want to break barriers that separate different groups within the UT. For instance, there is a gap between the ITC faculty and other faculties. But there is also a gap between ATLAS, which is now part of ITC, and the rest of the faculty. By having the entire community sharing more information and using central platforms, we want to build a stronger connection among students. No matter what study programme you follow, we want this connection to last long after graduation.’

Role of the corona crisis?

‘Our party was born in the midst of the crisis, so at the moment we don’t have any concrete plans. We hope we’ll both be elected to take a seat in the University Council and to positively influence the post-Corona effects that will surely be discussed. I hope the crisis doesn’t keep people from voting. Still, it shocked me how few people actually bothered to vote the last couple of years, you could get a seat on the council with only 200 votes. In any case, for us as newcomers it’s going to be hard to be visible and reach people with our voice.’

Facts & Figures

  • Party: Genesis
  • Founded: 2020
  • Current number of members in University Council: 0
  • Number of people on the election list: 2
  • Link to party program