Many reactions from students after call for help

A call up from communication staff member Dennis de Bruin received a large number of replies. He asked Windesheim students to help future first-year-students choose their study course.

Because of the Corona crisis, there will be no open days nor information days for students who want to start in September. Many students and former students posted messages this past week and offered to help by sharing their experiences and providing tips about their studies.

However, a student has a very limited reach when only using their own social media profile. Marketing staff member Dennis de Bruin thought that there may be many more Windesheim students who want to offer their help. There should be a way to seek them out and bring them into contact with future students. On Saturday, he posted on the social media accounts belonging to Windesheim an appeal to help out:

We are seeing a lot of appeals from students who want to help students choose their study course. What a wonderful initiative, it makes us happy. Do you want to help? Let us know! Then we will combine our forces!”

De Bruin: “And we received a massive response. On Monday, we had already received over one hundred responses. Besides current students, former students also offered their help and we think that is incredible.”

Many students and graduates responded through a personal message. After the weekend, there were also over forty comments under the Facebook post of people offering their help.

For example, second years Manon: “I think it would be fun to help out. I am following the Teacher Education in French study program.” Or Lianne, a graduate of Nursing: “I followed a specialized study program for Paediatric Nurse after my study programme in Zwolle! I would gladly help out :)”

Jolien can not only provide information on her study programme but also about studying while being a mother. “As a studying parent, I missed out on that and I would have profited from it when I became a mother.” And Sharon can help with questions about HBO, the pre-master and university: “I graduated last year and I am now following a pre-master at the University in Groningen.”

Esther wrote the following comment on the appeal: “ I would also like to help by doing something meaningful for others. Besides information about my studies, I can tell you about what it is like to study with an impairment. I have a hearing impairment and have experienced that it is perfectly possible to follow a regular study programme. I will gladly tell you about it.”

Since yesterday, De Bruin has been working with two colleagues to answers all the replies and collect all the contact information of the students. Communications will create a page on the Windesheim website, titled Studenten helpen studiekiezers (students helping prospective students choose). There will be an overview of all the study programmes and the contact information of students that future students can approach.

How will the students who offered to help be used? De Bruin: “They can, of course, answer questions through several media platforms. However, there might be students who would like to record vlogs or videos in which they talk about their experiences or answer frequently asked questions.”

The department will likely use social media to reach out to future students. For example, there is the Instagram Take-Over that Windesheim organizes, in which students talk about their studies in Instagram Stories. That has been going on for a longer period of time and is quite successful. De Bruin: “On the Take-Over, people can message them through personal messages and students seem to find that useful.”

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