Space boxes back!
TU/e has a large number of vacancies. Incessantly there are selection procedures, BAC (appointment advisory committee) meetings and at the HR departments they are working like mad to get all the offers out in time. However, the problem is that TU/e is full. And so is Eindhoven.
If we in our section were to fill all the vacancies we would have difficulty giving everybody a workplace. Still, that is not what I am complaining about in this column, for I am over the moon we do not have to move to Atlas. It is a much bigger problem that Eindhoven is full.
Over the past few weeks several people have resigned or have canceled offers for positions again which they had accepted before, simply because they did not manage to find any accommodation. A case which I found particularly touching was one involving a postdoc who had lived at TU/e in a student house with shared facilities during the first few years of her job, separated from her partner. Just before the summer she gave birth to her first child and after her maternity and parental leave it proved to be impossible for her to come back to TU/e.
Of course, she could not return to the student house. And in spite of desperate efforts to find affordable accommodation, none was available in Eindhoven. In the non-subsidized housing sector salaries are often required amounting to three to even four and a half times the monthly rent, or the minimum tenancy period is longer than the term of the contract.
The international ambitions of TU/e are hardly compatible with the housing situation in the city. We cannot accommodate students, and for PhD candidates there are no more guarantees of a temporary dwelling (that specific contract with Vestide has been terminated). Our students are not allowed to stay in tent camps on the campus as they are in Groningen, but students from the Design Academy do live on campsites out of necessity.
I propose bringing back the space boxes again in the short term. For many years they cheered up the campus and I do not see why they could not come back. And when they do, we shall only rent them to our own students and PhD candidates.