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UP recognizes a future. It sees a Vrije Universiteit at which students not only study, but where they live, work and interact in daily life. Where students run their own campuscafÊ and whose campus is blooming and alive: green fields and parties instead of concrete and restrictions. In this future our voices will be heard by a reachable student council via an accessible student parliament. This is what the VU can become. A university by and for VU students. A university of student involvement, campus life and a student council for all students. Let’s realize this vision together. The only way is UP!

The UP-candidates The UP-board Pim Kelders Mark Zonnenberg Jeroen ten Doeschate Martijn Goosensen Sam Rijkhoff Joep Moolhuijsen The UP-ambassadors Lars Schoof Pieter ten Broecke

DISCLAIMER This party programme contains all the views that form the foundation of the University Party and all people above fully support these views. However, UP aims to be the party for all students: aside from this programme, UP candidates can also campaign for their own views and thus can have varying opinions on certain matters. UP is a marketplace of ideas: a platform for everyone.



★ Student involvement ★ The bar must be set higher for student involvement. It must be natural that students not only study at the VU, but also have a job there, can easily set up activities and shape the education that they and their fellow students are following. Let students run the campus cafes and stores. Let students work at IT to make VUnet student-friendly. Let students develop new courses and minors. It’s time that the VU gives us, the students, the responsibility to set up a real community. It’s up to us to take that chance. The more students account for at the VU, the prouder we can be.

Every student’s contribution counts

Each and every student can contribute something to the VU in their own way. However, not every student is enabled to do so. Students regularly run into barriers when they want to contribute. This quickly discourages them from taking that extra step that is needed. UP wants students to be encouraged to actively contribute and make it easier for students to actually do this. Priorities > More job opportunities at the VU for students, for example at the University Library or the IT desk. > Reducing restrictive rules for campus activities. Activities that have already been approved once do not have to go through the red tape again. > Ensure that student initiatives and student organizations - including associations and startups have an accessible and suitable place on the campus to do their part. > By awarding prizes, such as one for the best student initiative, and further encouraging the Student Forum, ensure that there is a climate in which the ideas of students are leading and students are encouraged to develop initiatives for our campus.

A platform for involvement

There are thousands of ideas floating among the 23,000 VU students. 11 Student Council (USR) members cannot realize all of these without the help of the other students. It is time for students to come together and take responsibility. This has been happening since the previous academic year through the Student Forum: an open student congress in which all students can help to build a student-friendly university. As we speak, more than sixty students are working bottom-up to set up a VU student café, a VU festival, and a more atmospheric and greener campus. In this, UP sees the future of student representation, and we do not only want to continue the forum, but also expand it. Priorities > Constant USR contribution to the continuation of the forum and its initiatives. > Extra efforts to involve the ‘normal’ student who is not already a member of a board, council or committee. > Use the forum experimentally to present USR initiatives in order to collect broader participation from the student population. > Together with forum members form the organizational basis for a decisive and future-proof Student Forum that has a voice in the VU, both formally and informally.


★ A thriving campus ★ The VU is one of the few Dutch universities with an actual campus, yet there is too little visible activity on the VU campus. VU Amsterdam should be a place where students can develop, not only at an academic level, but also at a social level, outside the study obligations.

A thriving campus, is an accessible campus

A campus that lives is a campus where you can easily find your way, easily exercise and study, and easily relax with a drink and some food in your hands. UP wants the campus to become like a living room. The VU should be a place where you feel at home and would like to stay from early in the morning until late at night. Priorities > The study rooms have to be updated to fit the 21st century. > Create more space for inspiring, quiet spaces where you can study. > Provide a lounge area at the VU: a place where you can relax. > More attention for existing initiatives. Consider, for example, more attention for the sports facilities of the VU, a longer accessible roof terrace, and a more frequent rooftop cinema. > Students must be able to develop the campus and, for example, start a cafe, start a cinema, or present a work of art. Students should not feel obstructed to do this on campus.

A thriving campus is a green and sustainable campus

We can’t look away anymore. UP wants to go full steam ahead to realize a green university. Our plan consists of two parts. The VU needs to become a sustainable university ready for the upcoming years and at the same time the VU-campus also needs a lot more green. To realize this we want to anchor far reaching measures in a “VU treaty”, based on the international climate treaty of Paris that was adopted in 2015. Priorities > A sustainability treaty with specific targets that must be met. > More green, less concrete: through more grass and trees our campus will become a lot more enjoyable and a place to really relax. > Where sustainability is possible, sustainability must be the standard. > Cheaper, more sustainable and higher quality food. > Alternatives for polluting materials.


A thriving campus is an international campus

Because of the increasing internationalization more and more international students are coming to the VU. For these students it can sometimes be hard to get in touch with Dutch students. Internationalization also has an impact on Dutch students: more and more often English is the main language at the VU and some can cope with that fact better than others. UP wants to focus on internationalizing the campus the right way and wants more attention for the international character of the VU and the facilitation of it. Priorities > Supporting buddy projects, in which international and Dutch students are linked together, in order to let international students get in touch with Dutch students, and the Dutch students can for example improve their English proficiency. > To go on exchange needs to be made easier, so we can all pick the fruits of an internationalized world. > The implementation of English needs to be of high quality. No teachers that teach in deficient English. > International students deserve that their voices are heard. After the coming academic year also international students should be able to take a seat in the student council. > Inclusive internationalization: everyone should be able to participate. No one should feel left behind, including the student that studies ‘Dutch law’.



★ A student council for all students ★ Whether you are a humanities, social sciences, or exact sciences student, a man or woman, a bachelor’s or master’s student, are or aren’t a member of a student association – UP is the only party that can and wants to represent all students. We want to be down to earth and work together with our constituency instead of managing everything from an ivory tower, so that we can make the voice of students heard. We are not focusing on one type of student only, but are the only party that really stands for the representation of all students.

Every opinion matters

Many students have a strong view about the things that happen at the VU. UP believes that every opinion matters and wants to ensure it will become easier to let it be heard. Priorities > A Student Council computer at different entrances where students can express their views through one click of a button. > A casual monthly poll through VUnet or social media about relevant issues concerning the VU and the policies of the USR. > Associations are at the core of our student society. It is of vital importance that there is a good collaboration with them. Not only between the associations themselves, but also between the USR and the associations. The USR wants to play a facilitating part in this.

Great education for every student

All students, regardless of their faculty and field of study, deserve qualitative, personal and innovative education appropriate for their study programme. Financial priority must always be given to our education, students must be given the opportunity to easily reach their teachers, and our teachers must take advantage of useful innovative educational methods. Priorities > A pilot to pay tuition fees per course. In the current situation students have to pay full tuition fees even if they only take one course during the year. > Play an active part in implementing education innovations. By using new digital tools, we can enhance the quality of our education. However, these innovations have to really contribute and shouldn’t unnecessarily make anything more complicated. > Stay on top of unnecessary spending. UP wants to make sure money isn’t spent on wasteful prestige projects, but wants it to be spent on your education. > Bridge the divide of the glass doors. There must be better contact between students and teachers. Teachers can reach a big group of students and can encourage their involvement with our university.


Transparency is key

In order to be there for all students it’s important that students can let their voices be heard. To accomplish that, they need to know when and where they can do so. Priorities > Better feedback regarding course evaluations. UP wants it to be clear what happens with the results of these evaluations, for example by encouraging teachers to respond to them more extensively. > More clarity about elective courses, and increasing the degree to which students have room to choose. > VUnet needs a refresh. The search functionality needs to be enhanced. By doing so we create a better information supply through VUnet. > Increase the accessibility of policy documents like the education and exam regulations. A lot of these documents are long incomprehensible, which makes them very unattractive for students to read. > To stay up to date about all new developments, UP wants a campus magazine for and by students.



★ What has UP achieved this year? ★ ★ VUjobs has been implemented on VUnet. It’s now easier than ever before for students to apply for jobs and positions at the VU! ★ Steps towards a better, broader and future-proof Student Forum have been taken, and a PR-workgroup has been founded to work on involving all VU-students in the forum. The student-run campuscafé is closer than ever! ★ A new VU language policy, which steers the university towards more active contact between international and Dutch students, as well as inclusivity and a bilingual campus! ★ A new representational electoral system, through which there’s a student from every faculty in the USR. Consequently, the USR is increasingly becoming a student council for all students! ★ This year, each USR member is a contact figure for a faculty, causing the contact between the USR and associations and faculty student councils to improve substantially! ★ The first minor-markets have taken place, increasing clarity regarding freedom of choice within programmes’ elective spaces.



VOTE! april 16 - 19


UP Party Programme 2018-2019  

The English Party Programme of the University Party of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam for the academic year 2018/2019. The only way is UP!

UP Party Programme 2018-2019  

The English Party Programme of the University Party of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam for the academic year 2018/2019. The only way is UP!