ISO: ‘Minder masterstudenten door Zijlstra’

Als staatssecretaris Zijlstra de basisbeurs in de masterfase afschaft en het ov-reisrecht beperkt, zegt twintig procent van de studenten niet meer aan een masteropleiding te beginnen.

Het Interstedelijk Studenten Overleg vroeg het eigen studentenpanel naar de effecten van de maatregelen die Zijlstra heeft aangekondigd. De staatssecretaris wil vanaf volgend jaar de basisbeurs in de masterfase afschaffen. Masterstudenten die uitlopen, moeten bovendien hun ov-kaart inleveren.

Als alle maatregelen worden ingevoerd, begint één op de vijf bachelorstudenten niet aan een master, aldus het ISO-rapport. Nog eens 41 procent zal een ander masterprogramma kiezen dat korter of makkelijker is, of meer kans op werk biedt.

De studenten lijken niet te weten wat erger is: de basisbeurs verliezen of de ov-kaart. Als Zijlstra alleen de basisbeurs voor masterstudenten afschaft, dan stopt twaalf procent van de studenten na zijn bachelor. Wanneer hij alleen het ov-reisrecht beperkt, zegt dertien procent van de bachelorstudenten geen master te zullen volgen. Bij elkaar gaat het om twintig procent van de respondenten.

ISO-voorzitter Sebastiaan Hameleers: “Je ziet dat studenten strategische keuzes gaan maken en voor een andere master kiezen. Dat kan bijvoorbeeld invloed hebben op de bètastudies, waar veel masterprogramma’s tweejarig zijn.”

Volgens de studentenorganisatie onderschat het kabinet de effecten van de maatregelen en zou er niet alleen in de bachelorfase, maar ook in de masterfase een uitloopjaar moeten gelden voordat een student zijn ov-kaart verliest. Juist in hun laatste jaar moeten studenten veel reizen omdat zij stagelopen of een afstudeeronderzoek doen. De regering zou bovendien moeten onderzoeken hoe afhakers kunnen worden overtuigd om alsnog een master te volgen.

Verder waarschuwt het ISO dat ruim de helft van de studenten aangeeft meer te gaan werken naast de studie en dat meer dan zestig procent extra gaat lenen.

Het ISO-studentenpanel bestaat uit bijna 2500 studenten die zichzelf hebben aangemeld. De enquête werd ingevuld door 1195 leden, van wie meer dan zeventig procent aan de universiteit studeert.





It was about one month back when I decided to take my first international run, registering on the last day for the Amsterdam half marathon. I had run in seven half marathons over the years back home in India, but this would be my first international race, a unique chance to feel what it’s like to run on foreign soil. So it was on a sunny Sunday last month when my two roomies, both Chinese students, and another classmates boarded the train in Delft heading for Amsterdam, they tagging along just to cheer me on.

Having navigated our way from the AMS Central station to the Sporthallen Zuid, where the running bibs and runner numbers were being distributed, I then asked the Dutch lady at the counter for the usual runner’s ‘goodie bag’, but she didn’t understand the meaning of ‘goodie bag’, thinking instead it was some kind of brand. I explained that usually a bag with lots of running-related ‘stuff’ is distributed pre-race to the marathon runners, but obviously not at the Amsterdam Marathon, which is perhaps why the International Association of Athletics Federations rates this race only as a ‘Silver Class’ event.

Nevertheless, thankfully it was a cold but bright day, the Sun God mercifully showing his face all day long. After my quick pre-race meal (bread, biscuits, banana), we runners then proceeded towards the Startvak, the Dutch word for starting line. The runners were divided into five packs, and I was put in the last pack. At 13:30, our pack still hadn’t started, and I began getting anxious. Finally, at 13:45, we were flagged off, so I waved to my friends and took off.

Back in Delft I usually run four times a week in the mornings or evenings, reserving weekends for the longer runs. But for such a race as this, one must be both mentally and physically prepared for the gruelling kilometres that lie ahead. Fortunately the route was superb, covering much of Amsterdam, starting near the Olympic Stadium and then passing along the Rivierenbuurt, before circling around Overamstel, crossing the Hugo de Vrieslaan and finishing back inside the Olympic Stadium. The route was however quite narrow in places, forcing us runners to squeeze through or slow down so as not to bump into each other.

Personal best
Professional runners usually complete half marathons (21.1 km) in one hour. My goal was to finish under 2 hours. Usually when one is running in a marathon alone, the runner will use another runner as a target, trying to follow and overtake the target runner over the course of the race. In my case, I set my target on a girl who seemed like a pretty strong runner. This soon became like a cat and mouse game between us, I overtaking her and then she overtaking me, then again I overtaking her, only to find that she was always still right on my heels! She finally overtook me at the 16-kilometre mark and I never caught up to her again.

The Dutch people lining the race route were very supportive, especially the school kids, who cheered for all the runners and gave us ‘high fives’ as we passed, which really motivates you and gives you extra bursts of energy as you tire and reach your pain threshold.

I finally reached the Olympic Stadium and the finish line, completing my run in 2:08:26, my new personal best. Entering the Olympic Stadium was a wonderful, once-in-lifetime feeling. I celebrated by thanking God for giving me the strength to complete another race successfully. I wanted to hug somebody, but unfortunately (or fortunately for them) I couldn’t immediately find my roommates at the crowed finish line.
Having completed my first ‘international’ race, I’m now training for a full marathon in Barcelona in March, followed by the Berlin marathon – one of top five marathons in the world – in September.

Many people call me crazy for spending so much time (and money) running, but for me it is pure joy and a wonderful way to test my endurance capabilities. After completing a race I always have just one thought in mind: ‘Human willpower, how amazing!’

Editor Redactie

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