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The following candidates are running for Student Council ’19-’20. Click their names to go to their Policy Plan.


  1. Jaël Kortekaas

  2. Annemijn Ooms

  3. Bart Knibbe

  4. Bluma Brecher

  5. Valérie Heinz

  6. Nada Elbohi

  7. Anza Manto


This list was established by the current Student Council ’18-’19 and adapted by the Elections Committee of the VU. See the “Procedures” tab for more information.

This is the central hub of information regarding the AUC Student Council elections of 2019-2020. Here you can find all you need to know about the election process in general and running for the AUC Student Council of 2019-2020 in particular.


What do the AUC Student Council elections entail?


The AUC Student Council is a yearly rotating participatory governance body. Each year, the AUC election committee – this year, for the first time, under the auspices of the VU election committee – organizes an election to establish the new board for the following academic year. The new members of the Student Council are chosen democratically by AUC students that are eligible to vote. A term on the Student Council lasts for one year. Members of the Student Council can run for re-election.


Election reforms


The AUC Student Council of 2018-2019 has been able to streamline the Student Council election process with that of the VU. To explain why it was imperative to do so, some historical background information is needed.

Amsterdam University College is a joint initiative of the UvA and the VU, the major research universities of Amsterdam. To ensure the effective managerial and administrative governance of AUC, it was incorporated in the two science faculties of these universities: the UvA faculty of Science and the VU Beta faculty. It has been agreed on by AUC and its mother universities that the representational rights of AUC students would reside with the VU. In practice, all rights of say (advice, consent) that are conferred to the Beta faculty student council by the Dutch Law of Higher Education (WHW), are executed by the AUC Student Council, insofar as these rights concern AUC. In other words, the AUC Student Council is effectively a separate faculty student council, while legally being an extension of the VU Beta faculty student council. The AUC Student Council is, therefore, required to follow VU procedures regarding student representation, also when it comes to the elections. As this has not been the case in the past, we saw to it that the proper procedures in regards to the elections would be followed from this year onwards. We did so successfully.


As a result of our efforts to streamline the Student Council election process with that of the VU, the elections will take place in a different guise than in previous years. First of all, we will employ the VU list system, applying to the faculty student council elections, which prescribes that the candidates are placed on one list by the current Student Council after a pre-selective procedure (see “Procedures” for more information). Second of all, we will make use of the facilities of the VU, which has two major consequences: (1) the votes will be cast digitally this year and (2) AUC students are not only eligible to vote for the AUC Student Council of 2019-2020, but also for the VU University Student Council, the participatory governance body of and for all VU students. Finally, we will follow the election timeframe as determined by the VU election committee. The campaigning period, in which the candidates can convince the electorate to vote for them, will run from March 25 until April 5. The voting period will be from Monday, April 8 until Thursday, April 11.


Why should I vote during the Student Council elections?


Because much is at stake with the forthcoming elections. AUC students sometimes have the tendency to underestimate the impact that the AUC Student Council has and can have on the educational and managerial course that AUC sails. However, the AUC Student Council is invested with several substantial representational rights that should not be readily disregarded. For example, the AUC Student Council has consent rights to the headlines of the AUC budget, meaning that we have to concur with the budget for it to be passed. Furthermore, the AUC Student Council has consent rights and advisory rights on specific changes made to the Academic Standards & Procedures. Our advice on AUC’s state of affairs is also not taken lightly by the AUC Management. That is to say, if we voice student concerns about, for instance, the course registration process, in a constructive dialogue with the AUC Management Team, then they have to act on them.


So, the AUC Student Council has immensely influential representational rights and responsibilities. You as an AUC student must do your part and cast your vote wisely, in order to ensure that these responsibilities are conferred to the, in your view, most capable of candidates.


Go vote in the week of April the 8th!

When? What?
Early February Students will receive a personal email from the AUC election committee
February 12 & 13 Students can digitally check the electoral register
February 28 Applications close at midnight (23:59)
March 10 – March 16 Interviews with the candidates
March 25 – April 5 Campaigning period
April 8 – April 11 Voting period

This year, we will employ the VU list system applying to the faculty student council elections, as stipulated in the “Nadere regelingen medezeggenschap” of the VU. Hereby an explanation of the election system for the upcoming 2019 elections.


The candidates will be placed on the electoral list by the current Student Council on the basis of a pre-selective procedure. The higher you end up on the list, the better your chances are at being elected. To understand how this will work in practice, imagine the following vote distribution among candidates on a fictitious list.


  1. John (40)
  2. Mary (60)
  3. Emma (30)
  4. Sophia (20)
  5. Max (30)
  6. Susan (10)
  7. James (70)
  8. Emily (10)
  9. Daniel (10)
  10. Michael (20)


Total number of votes: 300
Total number of seats: 5
Electoral quotient: 60


Those candidates who attain the electoral quotient (number of votes cast / number of seats) are guaranteed to get a seat. So, in this example, James and Mary get a seat, because they attained the electoral quotient. The remaining seats are allocated to the candidates who did not attain the electoral quotient, but have the highest place on the list. So, the remaining seats will go to John, Emma, and Sophia.


Election result:

  1. James
  2. Mary
  3. John
  4. Emma
  5. Sophia


This example proves that it is possible to be on the next Student Council if the current board places you high on the list (like Sophia), but that you can also be elected in spite of your place on the list if you do an effective campaign (like James).

What does Sarah’s week look like?

With a million and one things happening at the same time, the majority of my duties revolve around maintaining a good overview of all that is going on, checking whether we’re on schedule, and moving forward with our projects. I draft our council’s meeting agenda bi-weekly based on this overview (together with Juanita), and the to-do-list police is probably my second name by now.  Apart from that, I hold regular meetings with other participatory governance bodies at AUC such as the Board of Studies and the Works Council in which I learn tremendously about how to maneuver within an institutional setting. My main floating tasks include being involved with the Tenants Association, your #1 body representing your interests to DUWO, and joining our External Communications Officer Bart in his many trips to the VU campus – very fun, but also very far away.

What does Juanita’s week look like?

As co-Chair, my main tasks vary. My most common responsibilities are to attend meetings, set agendas, draft letters, and oversee that everyone else on the board has the right resources to do their job well. Most meetings, I attend under the position of chair. For example, Sarah and I, the two co-chairs, have monthly meetings with the Board of Studies and Works Council. Other meetings, such as the monthly Engagement Council meeting, I attend because of the “floating tasks” that I chose at the beginning of our term. One of my floating tasks is “diversity and inclusion,” meaning that anything that has to do with this, I’m responsible for. Also, setting agendas for our weekly board meetings is a ritual that Sarah and I share. On top of this, when official letters must be sent out, I either draft or read over them, especially if my signature is needed. Still, my biggest and most elusive task as co-Chair is to have everyone else’s’ responsibilities, needs, and progress in mind to make sure that we are all working together towards the same goal.

What does Viktoria’s week look like?

My week normally starts with the Curriculum Discussion Groups that take place on Mondays during lunchtime. After these meetings, I synthesise the discussion points into intelligible notes with Paula, in order to discuss the outcome of the Discussions Groups in our weekly Student Council meeting. On Mondays, I also take the time to check and answer my emails as well as finishing my to-dos. During our weekly meeting on Wednesdays, I make minutes of our discussions and decisions. Furthermore, I am tasked with uploading the agreed upon to-do’s to Wunderlist. The rest of my week is filled with activities that vary per week: meetings with AUC staff, writing certain emails, scheduling meetings for the board, meeting with members of the SC board to work on a particular task, participating in the mental health working group, etc.

What does Paula’s week look like?

During my Student Council week, I manage our Facebook page and think of ways to promote Student Council news, information, and initiatives. In addition, I attend our weekly meetings and am busy with classes and studying. I also meet with the AUC Management to discuss various topics that can range from improving the Student Research Travel Fund application process to adding student-made art and plants to the Academic Building. I answer emails and messages from students and liaise with student organizations like Peer Support as well as committees such as ART board and Pangea. I also work on diverse projects such as the Discussion Groups, the Solidarity Fund, and improving mental health support at AUC

What does Bart’s week look like?

As External Communications Officer, I spend quite some time on maintaining a good working relationship with student representatives from the VU, UvA, and other University Colleges. Every second Tuesday of the month, for instance, I attend so-called Presidium meetings at the VU. This is a meeting that student representatives from every VU faculty attend, under the auspices of the VU University Student Council, in order to discuss the functioning of student representation within the university. I also chair the Academic Committee of the UCSRN, a platform for student representatives of University Colleges in the Netherlands to exchange information and share best practices. Next to our internal Student Council board meetings, I also regularly meet with the Tenants Association, with the aim of representing the interests of AUC students to their landlord. Meetings with the AUC Management Team, faculty members, and staff, in addition to writing and answering critical emails, are also alternately part of my weekly routine.