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KEI-week, ESN week or both? 

Date:21 July 2022
KEI-week at the Grote Markt
KEI-week at the Grote Markt

Are you feeling a bit clueless about your start in Groningen as a student? You can still sign up for the KEI- and ESN week for the ultimate introduction period as a new student in the city! During these weeks, you’ll get acquainted with the city of Groningen and its residents and meet new friends. For the best experience during these weeks, I'll give you a short explanation of both weeks and some tips given by Lars, the president of the KEI-week board, and Mingke, the integration coordinator of the ESN board.


The general introduction week of Groningen, the KEI-week, is the largest introduction week in Europe (!) and will take place from Monday the 15th until Friday the 19th of August. 6.000 prospective students will stroll around the city to discover Groningen together. The KEI-week will start off with the registration and information market, and not to forget the international welcome in the aula of the Academy Building. During this event, experienced students will tell you everything you need to know about studying in Groningen and the Netherlands, and of course about the KEI-week. Helpful information will be given, such as information about insurances and a DigiD. Lars definitely recommends this event for all international students, it’s very useful and a great way to start off your KEI-week and student life in Groningen! 

You don’t have to go to all the events during the KEI-week. There are both festive and informative events during the week, choose the ones you like and make the perfect week for yourself. Lars is looking forward to the Grand Opening on Monday night and Night of the Songs on Tuesday evening, so perhaps don’t miss out on those!

The Dutch student culture is inextricably linked with Groningen, during the KEI-week activities you’ll experience this inside out. As an international student, you’ll be placed in a mixed KEI-group with both Dutch and international students. Make good use of the Dutchies, they can help you get familiar with their customs and culture. During the week, you’ll get to know the wide variety of student organisations Groningen has to offer. They will pull out all the stops, especially at the KEI-parade which will be held on Tuesday. You’ll be blown away by the wagons, decorations and crazy students! 

Are you ready to get to know your new student city at/on every level? Don’t hesitate to register for the perfect start of your student life in Groningen! Do you have any more questions about the KEI-week? Take a look at the website to find out! 

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ESN week

The ESN Introduction Week, which is held from the 2nd until the 7th of September 2022, is an internationally orientated introduction week full of events, parties and workshops organised by the Erasmus Student Network. ESN is the largest student network in Europe, and aims at working in the interest of students who are spending a part of their education in another country than the one of their home institution. ESN works to improve the conditions for these students, and promotes exchange. 

Despite the fact that the ESN week is known as the international introduction week, it’s also open to Dutch students, as ESN stimulates the inclusion between international and Dutch students. With around 2.000 participants, it’s the biggest internationally orientated introduction week of the Netherlands!

You’ll discover the city together with your introduction group of 16 members. According to Mingke, this is a great way for new students to meet a lot of people before the start of the academic year. She finds it amazing to see so many people from different countries coming all the way to Groningen to have a great time together. The week will be packed with fun activities, such as a pub crawl on the first day, a comedy night on Saturday and Dutch lessons on Monday. A wide variety of activities to get you acquainted with Groningen and student life in this city! When participating in the ESN week, you’ll also receive an ESNcard that gives you access to events organised by ESN Groningen throughout the whole year, which is a nice addition. To read more about this fun introduction week or the ESN organisation, take a look at their website, and don’t forget to register! 

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After two years of adapted introduction weeks due to the pandemic, the boards of both organisations can’t wait to start and get you familiar with Groningen during these weeks. They will definitely go big and make these weeks the perfect start of your student life in the best student city of the Netherlands! 

About the author


Hee hoi, I am Maimoena, a Dutch student born and raised in… Groningen! Besides having a big passion for my Bachelor’s degree in Middle Eastern studies, I love doing sports (especially rowing) and cooking with my friends or housemates. When I have some spare time, I’m always out and about to explore new places and things!