William: ‘Vote either way! It’s important.’
Experience seems to be the biggest asset of William Pitz (21), candidate number 7 from Lijst Calimero. The British psychology student knows what he wants when it comes to the University Council.
Since he came to Groningen three years ago, he has gotten more and more involved in the University. He started out as a member of a Dutch committee, and that evolved into a year on the board of VIP – the study association for psychology. Eventually, William wound up becoming the vice-chairman of the faculty council of Behavioural and Social Sciences.
‘So I did all that, and when the elections came up, I thought: you know what? This is actually quite nice. By doing this, I can see how things work on an even higher level and experience it firsthand.’ Because of his familiarity with councils, William is convinced that he can actually have an influence as a student. ‘I know that you can actually make a difference, and that is my primary motivation at this point.’
A lot of work
He knows that being a member of a council is a lot of work. ‘Many students don’t realize that. But I don’t blame them, because I didn’t know either until I joined the faculty council.’
If he gets elected, he will reduce his own study load to ensure he has enough time for his work. ‘I made that mistake during my board year: studying and serving on a board at the same time. It’s not a good idea.’
The first thing that he wants to achieve is to make students’ voices heard. He wants to find out what the students, both Dutch and international, think. Of course, he can’t possibly represent all students with their diverse backgrounds. But, he wants to know what international and Dutch students alike want and need in terms of internationalisation.
Getting rid of multiple choice exams and replacing them with open-ended questions is another issue that William wants to fight for in the University Council. He has big plans, but he is also realistic about his position. Calimero either has to win 7 seats or he has to get 360 direct votes to move up the list.
Only a minute work
‘The possibilities are there, but of course they are limited.’ He smiles: ‘My mother always said, “never work with money you don’t have yet.”’
Nonetheless, getting students to vote is crucial for him. ‘I want to say that one should vote. Even if it’s not for Calimero, you should vote either way. It’s only one minute of work and you can actually make a difference.’
Why should people vote for him? He’s experienced, integrated in both the Dutch and international student cultures, and is very motivated. ‘Together, these three things are my strong point.’
Also read the interview with Taku Mutezo, the international candidate for SOG.