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99, August, 2015

04 September 2015

University Council Newsletter, edition 99

A number of subjects of the UCouncil cycle in August

1.   Foreword
2.    Pilots learning communities: state of affairs  and allocation of project applications
3.    UGY - University of Groningen Yantai
4.    Graduation Fund
5.    National Students Survey (NSE)
6.    Re-organisations

1.    Foreword
The holidays are over, new members have taken  their position, the balcony photo is taken, old issues return.  The chair of the UCouncil is  in the hands of an external chair for the first time : Tim Huiskes succeeds  Hilly Mast. The presidium is now complemented by 5 vice chair persons, one from each fraction. Until now that was one student member, of the largest fraction. During the change-over the old UCouncil met using the ‘normal’ agenda.  Items from that agenda are explained in this newsletter.  This was followed by the installation of the new UCouncil, and Tim Huiskes chaired the meeting from then on.

2.   Pilots learning communities: state of affairs and allocation of project applications
In February the Faculties were asked to submit applications for the Learning Community pilots.  A total of 19 applications were submitted,  of which 11 have now been approved. The Steering Group  Learning Communities will follow in  2017-2018,  and shall, also in the coming years,  assess the second and third rounds of applications. For these three years there is a total budget of 3 million euros. The UCouncil has been kept well informed of the allocation procedure of these pilots and is satisfied with this.  Though the emphasis was laid on the importance of a good evaluation of the  present pilot so as to avoid wastage of both the budget and the potential of this  project. 

3.    UGY - University of Groningen Yantai
This agenda item was discussed orally. Opinions were exchanged between the Board and especially the Personnel fraction.   In answer to  the question whether or not by means of fund acquisition, (the RUG is seeking/asking for 25 million euros), the business world will now get explicit influence,  the Chair said that this is no different from regular RUG research.  The RUG conducts research in areas where the relevant industry also conducts research. There is no direct management or control of RUG research by the industry, according to Mr Poppema.  The question where exactly the  go/no go moment lies could not be answered unambiguously.  However, should this happen then the UCouncil will be asked for advice, said the Board Chairman.  Part of the staff in the UCouncil is still worried about guarantees by the Board and the Chinese Government in the matter of academic freedom of RUG staff  travelling to Yantai.  There were also a number of questions about the guarantees in respect of the compensation in Groningen for the extra input by RUG staff for the UGY (those staying behind have more work and preparation takes a lot of  effort).

4.   Graduation Fund
The final part of the Regulation was presented for consent this cycle. Earlier, the Council had already agreed in outline but a number of issues had yet to be ironed out.   For instance, the amount of the grant has been increased to  444,20 Euros per month. Also, the  student-assessor Board will get more compensation; from 10 to 12 months now. The Regulation and these modifications were agreed, the personnel faction excluded. The Regulation entered into force on 1 September.

5.   NSE
The UCouncil asked questions about the statistical relevance of  the outcome of the annual National Student Survey  (NSE). The Board pointed to the signalling function of the survey, complaints by students require careful analysis – whether or not they are statically relevant. The UCouncil was of the opinion that that is also relevant and appreciated the point of view of the Board.

6.    Re-organisations

Soon the new  UCouncil will be brought up to date after consultation with Mr. Hoogma.  This was delayed due to the departure of Bert Verveld. The new head  Bureau, Stephan van Galen will start working per  1 September.
Points of attention are:
a) The datawarehouse (earmarked as showstopper) is not yet in order. According to the Board this  is allegedly caused by a conversion fault.
b) The position of the project controllers at  FWN is unclear  - these will be brought into line with the those of the other Faculties, according to the Board.
Grafimedia, Logistics and  DIV:
On Wednesday 9 September 2015, from 14.30 to 16.00 hrs. a staff meeting will take place in Berrnouilliborg,  room 165 (5161.0165), Nijenborgh 9 in Groningen.  Here the staffing plan that outlines how all staff members of Grafimedia, Logistiek and DIV will be placed and the social plan

UCouncil on Twitter:
PersoneelsfractieRUG @PfRUG
Personeel U-raad RUG @PersoneelUraad
Lijst Calimero @lijstcalimero
Lijst STERK @lijststerk

All factions also have a website.

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Disclaimer: The text above is an impression of topics discussed in the UC and should not be regarded as official statements with regard to decisions taken in the UC.

Last modified:28 November 2016 09.50 a.m.
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