What you study
Lijst Calimero thinks that the main responsibility of the UG is providing high-quality education. This is because the content of your study determines the value of your diploma. This value contains more than just academic and scientific skills, but also a sense of personal development is highly important. When this is achieved, students can leave the university for the labour market confidently.
The world is changing rapidly and so is the labour market. The university has to prepare students for this by teaching them relevant knowledge and skills. We believe that the university has to take on an active role in employability in order to build the bridge to the future of students.
We would like better communication of Career Services with study associations in order to get the best career service for every student. We think Career Services should take a more supporting role towards study associations. They should work together, and not compete with each other. Moreover, Career Services should be decentralized. In this way, we will make Career Services more faculty-specific by combining it with the network, experience, and accessibility from study associations to tailor the services to the needs of students.
In order to be ready for the labour market and ensure the active development of students, more professional opportunities should be facilitated to extend their knowledge and skills. Lijst Calimero believes that students of every bachelor’s programme should be able to get a career minor opportunity, or the opportunity for an internship for a reasonable amount of credits. The UG should provide this because internships play a vital role in your development to become a well-oriented graduate.
While the University of Groningen prepares students for life in academia & research, it should also prepare students for the labour market outside of the academic community because most of the people will use their expertise to work in the labour market. Lijst Calimero encourages study programs to have contact with the working field and allow the needs from the labour market to be represented in the curriculum. We could, for example, create a university wide Young Alumni Network (YAN) where students have the opportunity to find a mentor. Additionally, an advising body should be appointed that consists of members from the working field to ensure that study programmes facilitate what it takes to stand out at the labour market. The advising body should meet on a regular basis. However, the independent and critical role of the
In a globalised world in which work fields become more and more intertwined, it would be ignorant for a university to hold onto a static curricula within scientific fields. In order to stay up to date, the UG should invest in interdisciplinary education to prepare its students for their future and stimulate creative thinking. Of course, there should be a limitation so specific disciplines will not disappear. Thus, instead of changing content of studies, interdisciplinarity can be achieved by minors. Also, opportunities should be explored to enlarge the learning communities project from the FEB into a university-wide plan, which offers interdisciplinary education for all students interested.
A prime example of interdisciplinarity achieved through minors is the minor Retorica, which has been successfully proposed by Lijst Calimero last year. We are proud to have developed this minor and we think this minor, as well as other interdisciplinary minors, are invaluable for student development.
The UG characterizes itself as a leading research university, carrying out excellent basic science and socially relevant research. In this way, the UG contributes to our society. This aspect of our university should be cherished by protecting independent research. Besides, we believe that all students should be educated to become independent and critical thinkers on an academic level. This means enough attention for academic skills in the bachelor and master. Additionally, basic reasoning and logic skills should be taught at the bachelor’s level.
It is of great importance that fundamental research remains being financed by the UG. However, market driven research should not be phased out. The fundamental research stands at the core of education and research, while market-driven research is important to keep up with the current interest of society. The university should keep a broad interest in their research fields.
Many research skills are study specific while some skills are general. Your lab experience in Physics is different from that in Biology or Medicine. We want these skills to be decentralized in their teaching and we trust the program committees to ensure they are taught to students. General skills are, for example, reasoning skills. They are very important in every field of scholarship and science. We want all students to be able to judge information consistency and scope. Basic training in reasoning and logic should be a part off all bachelor's programs. A general skill all students should master is how to speak and write well. We have made this part of your development possible by creating a minor in rhetoric.
We recognize that the admission requirements for the research masters are quite strict. Lijst Calimero believes that students should not solely be accepted because of a high grade; the motivation, written reports and references should also be duly taken into account. Admission based on special merits should be possible, such as published scholarly articles. The research masters should also be more actively promoted to students during Open Days to increase their visibility and excite more students to become active in their field of research.
From this year on, the UG will receive extra resources every year to improve the quality of education. This has been introduced since the study grants were abolished in 2015. The money has been saved by this measure will flow back into our education. Lijst Calimero wants this money to be spent wisely, so we will keep an close eye on the spending the coming years. The quality agreements made are first and foremost to increase the quality of education, and not to fill in the gaps of budget cuts by the government.
In the past year, a framework has been drawn for the investments in the quality of education. In the future, Lijst Calimero will monitor whether the money is actually spent on the set of vocal points of active learning, a personalized education, improved feedback, a stronger connection with the labour market, student supports and educational infrastructure. We believe a part of the money should be spent on improving the student-staff ratio, with a focus on academic staff. Students have been asking for more time and support from professors and we want to make that possible. Our top priority stays with good quality of education and so should that be of the UG when spending this money. It should be invested in students and their education. Lijst Calimero believes that at least once a year, faculties should report to their faculty councils regarding the progress of this spending. Lijst Calimero encourages faculties & students to engage in this process, and advices Faculty Councils to take part in steering committees tasked with the division of the Quality Agreements from 2019 onwards.