At 19.00 o’clock this evening Wittenborg University students entered the ‘Raadzaal’ at the Apeldoorn City Hall, fully prepared to be asked about their opinions on the European Union and how it affects their daily lives. The debate was opened by the Apeldoorn Mayor, John Berends of the CDA party.
Only two weeks ago Wittenborg University students were asked to volunteer for this special debate between local entrepreneurs, local politicians and members of the European parliament to voice the opinion from European students.
Prior to the event the student representatives of Wittenborg were asked to come up with topics and questions that could be used during the debate. The results ranged from small issues like ‘having to pay for your mobile internet connection when crossing European borders’ to ‘Europe should focus more on their bond with students, as they are the future’.
Wittenborg student Veerle Knechten said at the start "we are here to listen to what Europe can do for us!", as the debate was opened by the Head of the Permanent Representation of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Europe, Andy Klom, who talked about ‘Europe for Apeldoorn’.
Other topics that were discussed included; bureaucratic boundaries, privacy regulations, economic imbalance amongst different countries, different tax regulations and the possibility of a unified European tax system, unemployment amongst young professionals and the lack of correct and available information on European internships and scholarships. The result was a perfectly organized debate that contained strong expressions and fresh ideas for the future. It was a nice experience for the students to get to know a little more about the role of the European Union and to actively research the topic. Some of them actually have to vote of the European Parliament this Thursday, this debate has most likely given them a new reason to vote.
Latest Update by Wittenborg's Nicky van Riggelen who was at the debate:
"The evening was opened by a welcome form the Mayor Berends. Followed by a clear explanation of the different roles within the European Unions by Mr. Andy Klom from the European Commission.
During the event all students were actively participating. Veerle Knechten kicked-off with a clear statement of why Wittenborg students were attending the debate; “We are here tonight to find out what Europe can do for us as students.” Followed by a question about the information provided by the European Union on internships and how they plan to increase the information availability for students in Europe.
Other issues that were discussed were; the bologna process (designed to ensure comparability in the standards and quality of higher education qualifications), unemployment amongst young professionals and smaller bureaucratic problems like health insurance for European Students. The later brought to the debate by Menna Salem from Egypt. The result was a perfectly organized debate that contained strong expressions and fresh ideas for the future development of the European Union. It was a nice experience for the students to get to know a little more about the role of the European Union and even got a chance to take a photo with the Mayor of Apeldoorn. Some of them actually have to vote for the European Parliament this Thursday; this debate definitely helped them decide on which party to vote for."
©Wittenborg University Press