Student life

Humans of the OWee: the IP crew’s main goal is to is to help students feel comfortable

Who are the people making the OWee possible? We meet them in this series. This time: the organisers of the Introduction Programme for master’s, exchange and bridging students.

The IP crew with Marjo van Koppen (second from the right, kneeling) and Satvik Pratap Singh (on the right, standing): “We invest a lot of time on things like social well-being and safety.”. (Photo: IP crew)

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Together with a team of enthusiastic students and staff, Marjo van Koppen, Senior Communications Officer at Education & Student Affairs and Structural Engineering master’s student Satvik Pratap Singh organised the Introduction Programme 2023, that will be held from Monday 14 August to Thursday 18 August, alongside the introduction week for-first years bachelor students. The IP crew wants to make sure that new master’s, exchange, and bridging students get off to a great start.

What is the Introduction Programme (IP) and who is it for?

Marjo: “The IP is aimed at all new master’s, exchange and bridging students coming to TU Delft. The programme introduces students to study culture and social life and it’s a chance to make a network of friends at the beginning of your studies. There are three core elements to the programme: the IP Social app, the IP Brightspace course, and the five day On Campus programme. I am the IP programme and team coordinator and work together with a team of student assistants and two colleagues to plan everything. This year we expect over 2,000 participants.”

Satvik: “It’s not just for Dutch people or internationals but for all master’s, exchange and bridging students. We are the first point of contact for them in this whole new environment. We invest a lot of time on things like their social well-being and safety when they’re on campus. We want to let them know what we do, how TU Delft works, and where they can go for daily things. We introduce them to TU Delft, to the city and to their new environment.”

‘We want the students to develop a new network of friends’

What can students expect from the programme?

Marjo: “It’s important that we help them build a network. Many of the international students have left everything behind so we want them to develop a new network of friends. We have both virtual resources as well as in person events so there are many ways to meet people and to communicate with us and each other.”

Satvik: “We will group students into teams of around 16 people with one coach and try to keep the teams together throughout the five days, but we also have some social evenings where all the teams can come together and meet. During the week, we will introduce them to projects where they are exposed to working with people from different cultures. They will learn how people behave or perform, which is important when it comes to doing master’s projects.”

Marjo: “Something we started doing last year in the opening programme is talk about intercultural awareness. We will look at eight aspects of intercultural differences and where they come from. It is not about these differences, but about communicating with each other. If you just keep on talking, you will get to a point of understanding.”

What do you hope students take away from the IP?

Marjo: “We hope they feel welcome and can find their place on campus. We hope they learn what to do for the academic year because they will have to start early. If you would only get one week behind, you would not be able to catch up.”

Satvik: “The main goal is to help students feel comfortable, and we also want to make sure they have fun.”

Heather Montague / Freelance writer

Editor Redactie

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