Party program 2019

Our Vision

Through strong connections with study associations, participatory bodies, and national politics, UReka strives to voice a well-informed, critical opinion on the policies presented by the executive board and initiates the change the student community of the UT desires to see. UReka sees the university as a platform for self-development and inspiration, where students should receive a world-class education from motivated professors in coherent modules, where internationalisation creates a new perspective and teaches all students what it means to be inclusive and live in a globalised world, learning from each other through face to face interaction.

Education

Lectures should be engaging, not schoolish
UReka strives to be vocal in discussions pertaining to educational development. We believe students face difficulty in maintaining concentration throughout the lecture and struggle to match the pace of the lectures. UReka will advocate for digitalisation as support for the learning of students, to allow the time spent with an expert to be more focused on interesting and effective learning methods than lecturing. This will also enable students to refer to digital lectures to review content that was unclear and study at a personalised pace.
We believe lecturers should be motivated to continuously reflect upon and improve their teaching methodology. Therefore, there is a necessity for teachers to undergo a training to improve teaching skills and stay up-to-date with new teaching methodologies that enable them to become better lecturers. Moreover, we believe lecturers can reflect on their teaching methods through evaluating other lecturers. UReka will aim for a structure of interdisciplinary evaluations by lecturers to improve the quality of education.
The end of the 0/15 EC era
Our university is working with an integrated curriculum with projects that combine all the knowledge of the respective module. As UReka, we still think this is one of the strongest points of our university. Currently, the university is working on the Twents Education Model 2.0. We advocated against the 0/15 EC rule and from 2020 onwards, we’re getting rid of the rule entirely. This is a really good step towards a fair system with more academic freedom. However, the abolition of the rule needs a well-considered approach. In the upcoming transition year, we are going to work on the implementation of this rule to ensure a fair system that maintains coherence in education. Because the division of the ECs affects you as a student directly and this is decided on by your program director, your program committee has a big role in this. Next year, we’ll keep contact with them to make sure they’re well-informed about their role.
Academic freedom, students at the reigns
For UReka, students are central to education, they should be able to tailor high-quality courses to their interests, be able to carry responsibility in their program, and receive more academic freedom to avoid the university becoming more schoolish.
Significant individual assessment of students in projects
UReka aims to ensure fair assessment of students in project exams. A common group grade for all project group members is an unfair assessment because the expertise of each group member is not rewarded the way it should be. Moreover, students aiming for a cum laude or a binding scholarship need higher module grades to maintain their scholarships or attain their goals. UReka will get this on the agenda of the programme committees, which can determine the amount of individual assessment desirable for projects.

Student well-being

A growing community needs a solid student housing policy
Having a house that feels like home is an important element to support students in their study. The university accepts more students than Enschede can provide accommodation for, hence it’s becoming more and more difficult to find a house for all students. UReka sees these struggles of students and urges the UT to work together with the municipality and housing corporations to provide enough affordable student housing.
Countering stress in a stressful environment
UReka considers a sound mental health of all students a key aspect for positive student experience. A recent survey showed an increase in the number of students facing mental health problems and seeking help from psychologists. UReka believes that the causes of this increase need to be investigated in order to come up with solutions for the problems around stress that students face.  For a short-term solution, UReka will call for the quality and number of psychologists to be increased to help students within a reasonable amount of time.

Internationalisation

Language, key in an internationally oriented university
UReka represents all students at the University Council and with about 30% international students, there is an increasing number of students that are excluded from the opportunity to provide input and understand University Council meetings. UReka desires to employ English as the default language of communication in University Council meetings to allow international members of the council to understand the discussion and allow for the full UT-population to attend open meetings.
UReka strives for equal opportunities for international students and the use of Dutch as the language of communication inhibits the participation of international students in activism and entrepreneurship. Therefore, UReka desires to employ English as the language of communication for all central activities. Moreover, as most study programs have recently shifted to English as the language of instruction; UReka will advocate for a strict check that all study material is in the language of instruction of the program.
Subsidised public transport for international students
UReka understands that one of the many problems faced by international students is the use of public transport as it is really expensive. UReka desires to reduce the problem by introducing a subsidised travel facility for international students, something which has been applied at other universities as well. With this provision, every student can travel around in the Netherlands, understand Dutch culture better and integrate faster. Furthermore, this facility could also aid in solving the housing issue for students as it gives them the freedom to live in a more distant place from the campus and travel every day to university.
Multicultural Classroom
With different cultures, different expectations and problems arise. Students often feel excluded and/or misunderstood in classrooms, because of miscommunication between both student to student, and student to teacher. Hence, UReka strives to create a universal understanding to ensure that everyone within the university is on the same page. Through offering courses on cultural differences and promoting language tandems, we could increase the chances of integration by avoiding miscommunication.

Facilities

Lecture rooms, a great place to study on your own
Due to the rising number of students, the places to study are getting less and less. The library is crowded during the exam periods. and so are the other places to study around the university. UReka sees an opportunity to counter this lack of space by using lecture rooms. Currently, most lecture rooms are closed when no lecturers are present. However, UReka thinks it would greatly benefit the students to keep the lecture rooms open all day long to enable students to meet up or study.
Crowded courses ask for flexible lecture rooms
With more courses getting bigger, larger lecture rooms are required in order to facilitate the students attending the course. However, since is it is a waste of space for smaller courses to solely focus on bigger lecture rooms, UReka thinks there it is important to create structurally flexible rooms. Lecture rooms with removable walls or similar solutions would create the solution needed to achieve this.
Less financial stress, more terms to pay your tuition
UReka understands that student life is stressful with courses and deadlines. Financial planning is adding extra stress on students. UReka desires to reduce the stress on students by introducing a provision where students can pay their tuition fee in 10 terms, which gives students more financial freedom and allows for a better social life.

Extra-curricular development and student activism

Credit for your effort, student team as a minor
The UT has a policy plan for Student Teams in which they state that they want to implement a double HTHT minor for Student Teams to give students the ability to be involved as a full time member for half a year. However, this is still not enacted. UReka values activism and thinks it is important that students can develop themselves in student teams and get the valuable ECs for their participation in them. Therefore, UReka wants to make sure that this policy plan of the UT is respected and enacted.
Suitable sports and culture facilities for relaxation, fanaticism and entertainment
The university is experiencing growth in population, which demands it to use the sports and culture facilities for lectures and all other curricular activities. This does not only restrict the time in which students can follow their hobbies and passions, but can also damage these facilities to the point they can no longer be used for the sports and cultural activities they were meant for. UReka desires to avoid this kind of misuse of these facilities and try to keep the sports and culture facilities for sports and culture alone.

Education in the master

Keep innovating the master programmes
For different master programmes, there is no standard procedure to ensure the quality of education. The response to the course evaluation questionnaires is often very low, which makes it difficult to identify problems in the curriculum. Programmes should be supported better in monitoring the quality of the courses and improving them accordingly. Also, UReka wants programmes to keep a critical view of the curriculum and adapt its contents to student needs and developments in industry.
Ensure master programmes match students’ expectations
Master programmes should be an extension to a bachelor programme while allowing students to deepen their previously acquired knowledge. As there are students with many different backgrounds, there should be more clear and comprehensive admission criteria, especially for students from other universities or universities of applied sciences (HBO). This is important for the UT as well as the students, so they know what to expect from their programme. Overall, there should be clear communication towards students and clear coordination between different master courses.
An internship should be beneficial for students, not just for companies
An internship should not be a way for companies to get cheap labour but should have added value for a student’s education. It is important that students can reach their own goals and not just those of the company. The university should support students to reflect on their internship and learn from their experiences and make sure companies give them the opportunity to do so.

Transparency

Efficient participation is communicating on all levels
UReka experienced that students participating in the Programme Committees or Faculty Councils, are sometimes overrun by ideas and opinions of the employees. Besides, there is little exchange of information between the university council, the faculty councils and the programme committees and in between the various participation councils on the same level. In order to achieve effective problem solving, idea implementation and to have strong participation of students, it is beneficial to facilitate such communication for aspects like a vision on the EER and language policy. Therefore, UReka wants to keep organising activities like themed meetings about relevant topics of participation councils and initiate informal meet-ups to put the people involved in various levels of participation in contact with each other.
Your opinion matters, so you deserve to be involved
As a student you raise your opinion via voting for a party during the election week, but what do they actually do with your opinion/vote? UReka wants to keep you informed about the issues addressed in the university council and values your input. Besides, some students are unaware of the existence of student participation bodies and their responsibilities. In order to make sure that you as a student are aware of developments and can address your awesome ideas to improve our community, UReka will focus on hosting interactive activities like open office hours to discuss your ideas and will keep you informed about the current discussions in the council through active use of social media.