Somebody looking at banners student elections
There are student council elections on 10 and 11 May. Three parties participate. (Photo: Thirza Bolhuis)

A quick round by Delta shows that there are many swing voters on the eve of the Student Council elections. What are their concerns?

Lees in het Nederlands

On the Monday prior to the Student Council elections, Delta wandered across the Mekelpark in front of the Aula heading to Pulse and the Faculty of Applied Physics to talk to students about the forthcoming elections of the Student Council and the Faculty Student Council on 10 and 11 May. Delta spoke to 11 students about their preparations for the elections. The large majority have either not decided which party to vote for or are not intending to vote. Can they be persuaded?

Two students being interviewed.
Norin (left) and Lala (right). (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Lala (33) and Norin (31), Complex Systems Engineering and Management (master's)

Lala and Norin have seen the posters but do not think it is really relevant for them, explains Lala. “I did not know that there were elections. I’m concentrating on my studies so I do not think that I will try to find out more about it.” Nora does not see how the Student Council can be useful for them given that they are international students. “We don’t know them. If they would put their efforts into international students they would really get our attention.”

A student eating lunch
Turhan. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Turhan (26), Offshore & Dredging Engineering (master's)

Turhan will not vote either. “During Covid I did not go to campus, so for me there was little to vote for. And at the moment I do not need to be on campus much as I can do my simulations at home. On top of that, I will graduate soon so the elections will have little impact on me.”

Two students being interviewed.
Tjaik (left) and Clara (right) are being interviewed by Delta. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Tjaik (26) and Clara (26), Civil Engineering. Track: Water Management (master's)

While Tjaik was aware of the elections, neither he nor Clara are intending to vote, says Clara. “We are both working on our theses and won’t be here next year. I can’t imagine it’s relevant for me.” “I am now just too busy to think about these kinds of things,” says Tjaik.

A student at Pulse building
Benjamin. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Benjamin (22), Industrial Design Engineering (master’s)

All the parties are very similar to each other and all put students first, says Benjamin. So he does not know who to vote for. “When I started my student life I voted for Lijst Bèta, but I see little difference between them. All the parties put students first. The important issues for me are the workload, the BSA (binding recommendation on the continuation of studies), and how you can get credits. Should the parties view these differently, I would then check them out.”

A student at TU Delft Library
Rita. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Rita (23), Applied Physics (master’s)

International student Rita came to Delft in September. “I appreciate organisations like the Student Council and I generally follow the TU Delft news and read posters, so I was surprised and disappointed when I heard about the Student Council so late. I think they should have a bigger presence in the everyday lives of students. If I had seen the activities or campaigns of the Student Council outside of the elections, I would probably have voted.”

A student in at the Applied Science building
Mijntje. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Mijntje (20), Applied Physics (bachelor’s, first year)

Visibility and strong views are the deciding factors for Mijntje. “I only knew about the elections because a fellow club member is involved in them. I am intending to vote, but I haven’t yet decided who for. I want to vote for a party that clearly shows that they have a plan. They need to take things seriously and really focus on studying and student life rather than having vague positions on things. I am very doubtful about the third party as I heard that it started as a joke.”

A male student at Mekelpark
Ezra. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Ezra (23), Mechanical Engineering. Track: Energy, Flow and Process Technology (master’s)

Ezra does not know who he will vote for as yet. “I miss the parties having major plans on becoming more sustainable. I would like to see money being put into generating energy on campus and sustainable student accommodation. I also wonder if the plans TU Delft has about growth are desirable. I did my bachelor’s in Enschede and in the Randstad (the four provinces in the west of the Netherlands) you really see that everything revolves around the Randstad. If they want to attract so many students to the Netherlands, they should see if it would not be better to spread them around other cities.”

A male student at Pulse building
Alihan. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Alihan (23), Complex Systems Engineering and Management (master’s)

For Alihan, the most important subjects in the elections are appropriate facilities and affordable refreshments. “Lijst Bèta has worked on inclusive quiet spaces on campus over the last two years, and I support this. Other universities already have suitable spaces so TU Delft is lagging behind. As a Muslim I pray five times a day, three of which are during study times, so good facilities are important for me. I would also like to call on the Student Council to look at affordable food on campus. These times of high inflation affect students too. If you want students to spend all day here studying, there should also be affordable healthy food.”

A male student at Applied Science building
Jelle. (Photo: Thijs van Reeuwijk)

Jelle (19), Applied Physics (bachelor’s, first year)

Jelle did not know that there was a third party standing, but he has read about the elections and knows exactly who he will vote for. “I will vote for ORAS, for Jelle of the VVTP (Applied Physics’ study association). I have spoken to him and like him. Then I saw that ORAS also had some good ideas, such as personal development on top of your studies. I believe that you don’t only learn from reading books, so I support ORAS in pushing for credits for internships and other activities.”

  • Students at TU Delft may vote for the Student Council and the Faculty Student Council on Wednesday 10 and Thursday 11 May. Vote on Several candidates discuss their plans on the website.
  • Do you want to know more about a particular party? The three parties standing for election, ORAS, Lijst Bèta and Dé Partij, have their own websites.
  • Read about the function of the Student Council on TU Delft’s website. Each faculty has its own page about its Faculty Student Council.
  • Also read New party wants ‘a new voice’