Due to the coronavirus, Fontys, Avans, TU/e and Tilburg University have adapted their introduction weeks for new students.
Normally, at the beginning of the academic year, universities and colleges organize all kinds of activities for their first-year students. The students get to know about their new courses and the city in the last weeks of August. Every year, Fontys organises the Purple Introduction Week for its 10,000 new students. This year, it is partly held digitally.
Nicolette Koot is the project leader of the Purple week. She feels it’s extremely important that the young people actually meet each other physically. “On that first introductory week, sometimes friendships for life are made,” she explains. “That moment of bonding is very important for many students.”
The first year students come together on the first day in the building of their study programme. Later in the week, there’s another event in Het Klokgebouw in Eindhoven and in the Koepelhal in Tilburg. Here, the students get acquainted with the city in which they are going to study. In addition, there are digital events throughout the week in which the youngsters can participate.
For the future students of Tilburg University, there is the TOP-week every year. This year, this has become a digital programme. Vice-chairman Féline de Vries is hoping for some more face to face activities. “We’re still working hard on that,” she says. “Students can meet each other in small groups if they want to. We’ve divided the students per programme into groups with a mentor. In a group like that, they can participate in certain activities face to face. Of course, if all wishes for it.”
Every year, there’s the INTRO Festival in Den Bosch and the HBO Intro Festival in Breda. Various schools including Avans, Fontys, Breda University of Applied Science and the HAS University of Applied Sciences opt for it. This year, it’s going to be an online festival.
The TU in Eindhoven organises an introductory week that takes place partly online and partly offline. The university is still working on the exact details of the week.
Translation: Chaitali Sengupta, who gives ONLINE Inburgering classes.