September, the busiest month of the year in the streets of Groningen. New students from all over the Netherlands are moving towards the beautiful city of Groningen. You will see parents helping their kids moving their stuff into student houses everywhere. After saying goodbye to their parents, they are ready to embrace the long nights of studying but also make new friends and having the best time of their lives. However, September is also the month were the train station is packed with all new arriving international students from every country you can imagine. For them it might be more challenging to find their way around the city and integrate in the Groninger student life. For those students the Mentor and Integration Committee of ESN can be of help.
This year ESN’s Mentor and Integration Committee consists of Gerbrich, Loes, Daniek, Dana and Jeannette. In the beginning of each semester, we take care of the mentor program of ESN. Here we link the international students to students of their own faculty. They will pick them up from the train station when they arrive in Groningen and show them around town. The mentors can also provide information about the faculty or the university in general. If you would like to help the internationals out yourself or want to have a mentor, don’t hesitate to fill in the application form on the ESN Groningen website.
Besides the mentor program, the committee also organizes a fun activity every month. Everyone is welcome at these activities, internationals and Dutch students. By doing this, we want to stimulate the integration of the internationals. This month, the students had to be prepared to embark into battle. The adrenaline levels were high and everyone put their best game face on. Maybe you can guess it already, the first activity organized by the committee was paintball. It was a very fun afternoon, and to top it off, we arranged an all you can eat pancake dinner at the pancakeship to introduce them to this Dutch delicacy. If you are curious about our other activities, for now we can reveal it will include struggling internationals on a slippery skating rink and trying pepernoten for the first time sitting on Sinterklaas’ lap. Of course this is only a tip of the iceberg. If you want to know more about our activities, like our facebookpage!
And please remember; whether you are moving from the countryside of the Netherlands to Groningen or from a completely different country, everybody is welcome at our activities to improve the integration. So bring your friends! If you want to know more about the Mentor and Integration Committee and our adventures, we will be writing this blog every month. So stay tuned!