Support for first-generation students
Studying at a university is often more challenging for first-generation students than for students whose parents have preceded them. First-generation students more often work alongside their studies and, on the other hand, are less involved in extracurriculum activities, less often follow an excellence program and less often study in another language.” It is the dream of outgoing Vice-President of the Executive Board, Mirjam Bult, to offer these first-generation students more support and thus contribute to equal opportunities for everyone.
Mirjam: “In the university's vision, 'People First' is the most important starting point. We want to be a community where everyone feels included, at home, supported, valued and accepted and where people have as many equal opportunities as possible to realize their ambitions. Especially for the University of Twente, access to, for example, student activism, is a major priority for everyone who aspires to this. Since the start of this university, we have considered student activism an important part of the personal and social development of our students. That is why anyone who wants to do so should be able to do board work.” She continues with a laugh: “Besides, student activism is genuine self-interest; our campus is run by students.”
Mirjam was a first-generation student herself. “I have not felt any obstacles myself, thanks to the support and commitment of my parents and family. But there was a lot of pressure to deliver, to make it happen. Can you imagine how this works out if you don't have or feel that support in any way.” It is therefore Mirjam's dream to offer these first-generation students more support. How wonderful would it be if we started together to make Mirjam's dream come true?
As from September 1st, Mirjam will become State Councilor in the Advisory Division of the Council of State. This means that she will say goodbye to the University of Twente after six years. Many would like to thank Mirjam for her commitment to our university and for her enormous involvement in the Twente academic community. At her request, we therefore set up a support fund for first-generation students. With your contribution to this fund, we jointly provide a level-playing-field for these students.
With this fund we want to support first-generation students so that they can be part of a student board or participate in an excellence programme, a study trip or an international conference. Support that these students cannot expect from their own parents. Mirjam: “This new fund gives us the opportunity to do more for first-generation students. I really appreciate your contribution to this fund!”