Vrijspraak: More interaction, less mandatory classes
Nicolas de Laparre De Saint Sernin (24) considers checking the work of the Faculty Board as one of the main jobs of the Faculty Council of Tilburg Law School. He holds the third position on the list of Studentparty Vrijspraak. First on the list is Gijs Langerak (20). They both study Global Law and Gijs also follows courses in Dutch Law. Gijs: ‘In agreement with Studentparty Vrijspraak, the board promised to spend a big part of the study advances on digitalization, student wellbeing and improving the labor market communication. We want to make sure they do as promised.’
In the Faculty Council, the Faculty Board presents its plans for teaching and research. Staff and students of the faculty both have seven seats in the council. They have the right to vote on issues, make changes in board plans and present their own initiatives. Studentparty Vrijspraak is one of two parties that runs for seats in the Council TLS. The party has been doing this for the last 29 years. Gijs: ‘A big part of the students’ job is to oversee the Faculty Board. Asking the right questions is important. I can be very critical, so I expect to be good at asking the right questions. Besides this, I enjoy a good discussion.’
More integration between international and Dutch students
Both students have some experience in student participation. Gijs as a General Board Member in faculty association Magister JFT and Nicolas as Program Committee member Global Law on behalf of Vrijspraak. He wants to represent all TLS-students but with a specific focus on more interaction between Dutch and international students. He explains: ‘We can achieve this by making moot court competition part of our studies in an earlier stage. It gives students a chance to practice their English-speaking skills and it will make our study more fun and more attractive to new students. If the different law studies do this together, it will result in more integration between international and Dutch students.’
Active besides studying
Gijs also wants to promote interaction in English. ‘I would like all members of the Faculty Council to feel comfortable to discuss in English. They should not have to worry about being made fun of. Because that is what happens regularly on campus. In meetings from student participation bodies and during courses as well. At the start of the new council, I want to address this.’ Besides this, he wants to diminish the number of mandatory classes, so students will have more time for extracurricular activities.
Add the students’ perspective
Nicolas considers membership of the Faculty Council as ‘a way to be part of positive change’. For Gijs it is a unique possibility to see how the board operates and to have influence. Nicolas has spent a big part of his childhood in different countries. ‘My mother is from Greece, my dad is French. As a family we travelled a lot. I liked that and that is why I study abroad, first in Utrecht and now in Tilburg. The Faculty Membership will suit me because I am a good listener. While travelling, I dealt with different people which helped me to develop my social skills. Tilburg University is a great university, so I do not see it as my task to complain. But it is important to add the students’ perspective to the Faculty Boards plans.’ ‘Students bring balance’, Gijs confirms.
You can find more information about the candidates and Party Vrijspraak at:
Nicolas De Laparre De Saint SerninCandidate
Roos van DeijckCandidate
Marijn van den BurgCandidate
Jay la FontaineCandidate