On the 18th of april the fourth faculty council of TSHD took place. Our suggestion to change the language of the meeting to English, such that our international student on the list for the upcoming elections would be able to follow the meeting, was declined because some members of the council needed more time to prepare and translate the information that should be discussed. We did understand this argument, but all members agreed that it would be no problem to do the next faculty council in English.
The first topic that was discussed was the development of Mindlabs. This initiative is basically a collaboration of different parties within (and some outside) of Tilburg, such as Fontys, ROC and our own university. The intention of this project is to create an atmosphere for technological research and development. Within the next year a new location will be designed next to the Lochal, but for now Mindlabs is located in the Deprez building near the central station. As student representatives we are very enthusiastic about this project, but we also need to keep in mind that the workload of teachers should not raise because of some extra (voluntarily) research tasks within Mindlabs. To make sure that enough researchers are connected without an increase of the workload, Mindlabs will also hire persons from outside the university.
In the faculty council of february, we proposed a plan to harmonize the communication structure of the bachelor programs. This plan was discussed in the general meeting of the faculty and the program directors responded positive. Some adjustments need to be made, but when this is done the plan is approved. A change that should be made is that some programs will have a sounding board meeting with all students that would like to attend. Besides this we should make the meeting of the sounding board more informal. This is in our opinion a good idea, but we can ask the question how we make sure that not only active students are heard. We will keep contact with all program directors in the upcoming month about the changes and we will discuss the timeplan of the implementation. We think it is possible to implement the plan in the next academic year and we will monitor this process carefully.
Response about the SV-budget
We received the answer of the board regarding our question about the SV-budget. Last faculty council we asked the board to come up with a way to measure the improvement that will follow from the investments of the SV-budget. The answer we received was that they are still looking into the student/teacher ratio because it is very difficult to get all the information. The board proposed a meeting to talk about how we should monitor a successful investment of the SV-budget and they are also curious about the input that we received from the program committees.
Business case Liberal Arts and Sciences
Because of a shortage on students within the LAS program, a business case will be made. The members of the marketing and communication department of the university looked into the prospected amount of students, estimated at two hundred at that time. They concluded that this estimation was too high and that it should be changed to hundred twenty. Besides this, other factors such as the programs and a closer LAS community on other universities, did influence the number of expected students. Within the business case, there will be looked into a way to make the LAS program of TSHD more attractive for students.