CLMN | Your First Day in Class9 September 2016
You arrived late in class and although you managed to sneak in via the door at the back, the teacher spotted you and shouted at you “Make sure you are on time, next time” while you were trying to mumble some excuse. As a result, you felt excessively individualized and ashamed, and experienced a loss of face for this unexpected feed-back. Indeed, in your culture you would have been able to enter the classroom unnoticed.
Later on, during the class, the teacher stereotyped your culture negatively and again you felt uncomfortable with the looks others gave you. You did survive the first class, though.
Then lunch came. What to do? You hadn’t really prepared anything and had hoped to run into some friends to have lunch together, but unfortunately you were alone. By chance you noticed this long line of students in the middle of the Auditorium. They were mainly Dutch, only a few internationals had taken up the challenge of lining up for a long time to get what proved to be a gratis (yes, you’d already learned that key word) sandwich from the newly opened Subway (see photo). So there you were, and luckily you saw a few familiar faces. You felt better and could enjoy the sandwich with them. They, by the way, all said that you had quickly adapted to Dutch standards. That brought a small smile of victory to your face. Yes, you were nearly one of them now!
Then the afternoon with group work came. You noticed that most Dutch students wanted to stick together and not mix with you and other internationals to form groups. That was quite frustrating, as you wanted to do your best to mix with the locals. You ended up in a group of mostly other internationals and a few enlightened Dutch students. A missed opportunity to further integrate into our TU/e Community, you thought. Whose fault was it? Difficult to say, as it always takes two to tango in cross-cultural communication. But as many studies show, it is very often the locals who don’t make much effort to open up and integrate within a new shared environment. The TU/e is no exception. Developing cross-cultural skills is a first step in the right direction: making new-comers feel welcome and creating a collective sense of belonging to form a community.
In the evening you’re at home with your own friends, enjoying your own food, which you cooked together. Back in your comfort zone. What a relief! Tomorrow is another day that will certainly have new challenges. But don’t worry, we at the TU/e will help you and open the door for you, but you will need to enter the room yourself, as the Chinese proverb says. Good luck!
For a while now, TU/e student Guido Buntinx and his friend Christophe Westerveld (student of Zuyd University of Applied Sciences) have been attracting a lot of attention with their 'electric beer crates'. Limburg's regional TV station and the TV news program Editie NL also got wind of their creative initiative. The short internet videos showing them riding along on the public highways have been watched multiple times.
The Department of Applied Physics needs to make significant savings: one million euros on a total annual budget of nine million. This was announced last week Wednesday by Departmental Dean Gerrit Kroesen at a staff meeting. The draft reorganization plan must be ready by the end of November and, says Kroesen, compulsory redundancies cannot be ruled out. The Departmental Council is holding talks today with the Departmental Office.
The fourth day of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge in Australia has come to an end and Solar Team Eindhoven is clearly leading the Cruiser Class. Despite earlier transport problems and the limited window for testing on site, TU/e solar car Stella Vie is performing in the outback “far beyond expectations”. With some 900 kilometers to go, a third world title seems almost a dead cert for the team from Eindhoven - but this is no time for complacency.
At this university there are students who are not taking any classes, but they are still forced to pay the full sum of their tuition fee. How is that? When you take a look at what they are doing instead of following courses, their reasons become clear. They form one of the most important cornerstones of the TU/e, they are the student board members and part of student teams.
Some rooms in De Plint in Luna are not yet ready to use and so the associations are having to put the brakes on some of their activities. The building contractor has run into delays and current expectations are that everything will be ready by early November. There is evidently so much stuff in the Bunker that it can't all be stored in Luna. Bar Potential hopes to open its doors around New Year's. The cultural associations have just moved from the Bunker to Luna.