‘We’re lacking a fun community in which we can connect with students from other Research Master’s programmes to talk about research and other topics.’ Master’s student Elian Griffioen and former Faculty Board assessor Thijs Wever have addressed this issue by taking the initiative to establish the Research Master Activities Committee. The first activity will take place this week.
Elian Griffioen (a second-year student of the Methodology and Statistics Master’s programme) understands where the demand of the Research Master’s students is coming from. ‘Events put on by study societies tend to focus heavily on Bachelor’s students. One-year Master’s programme students are often still connected to their Bachelor’s programme. On the other hand, Research Master’s programmes attract many students from other universities, frequently from abroad. It is important that they also have things to do that reach across programmes.’
Thijs and Elian launched an activities committee, which now includes 10 students from different Research Master’s programmes. ‘We talk to our fellow students, go around the classrooms and communicate via Facebook,’ Elian says.
This year is a pilot year. ‘We’re organising three to four activities, all in English. On Friday, we’re starting with a pub quiz. When putting the teams together, we mix students from different programmes and nationalities. The questions are international and interdisciplinary, so everyone can contribute and learn something. By bringing students together in this type of non-academic setting, we aim to strengthen the sense of community.’ The theme of the pub quiz ties in with the Halloween season: fear.
Later in the year, the committee will be organising an interdisciplinary symposium for the Research Master’s students. On the agenda for April is the Batavierenrace, the relay race from Nijmegen to Enschede. Elian: ‘We can prepare for this together in training groups.’