However great student life is, it costs money. Options abound: loans, earning a little extra on the side, appealing to your parents, or coming up with another creative solution; certainly if there’s a fantastic opportunity out there for you, such as an exchange or following modules abroad. How do the students at Woudestein and Hoboken cope with a lack of money?
Loaned out to the max and spending it all?
Auke Zijlstra, economics and econometrics student, currently holds down five jobs on the side. “They vary in pressure: actually there are two that demand more of my time,” he explains. Among other things, he teaches, he’s a mentor and he’s the treasurer of his apartment building. He’s doing all this with good reason: next year he’s on an exchange to Singapore. “Everyone I know who is going on an exchange is borrowing as much as they can now to accrue some money.
Of the remaining students at Woudestein around half hold down jobs; the other half don’t.” That’s why the ones without are borrowing and putting some of the loan straight into a savings account. Others are loaning out to the max, and dishing it out as soon as it comes in. “A small number of students don’t want to borrow money out of principle, as they don’t wish to build up their tuition debts, but I don’t see that as a problem as with econometrics you’ll quite easily find a job,” adds Auke.
What happens with all the earned or borrowed money? Rihannon, who is combining Jurisprudence with Criminology, lists rent and food shopping as her biggest expenditures. “I often pass the Albert Heijn on my way to and from the university,” she explains. “I also like to eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, so I pay out a great deal on food.” Auke spends a large proportion of money on his tuition fees and rent. “Clothing, gadgets and weekends away with friends also cost a lot of money, whereas the student union costs aren’t too bad,” he thinks.
Student teams: a dream job
On the other side of the city, at Hoboken, there’s the possibility of getting a study-related job at the hospital in the students’ first year, with a ‘student team’ supporting the nursing staff. “In the first year everyone wants to join a student team to improve their CV,” says third year medicine student Tessa. Fellow student Najim: “Working in a student team is exceedingly instructive and just really chill: you’re paid 11 Euros an hour, with bonuses on top of that. And, it’s easier than working in hospitality, where you can never take a break.”
Felix, another medicine student, also sees great benefits in a job like this. “A great deal happens in hospitals, like yesterday, I stayed on for something interesting, even though I had a test the following morning. You also get to know a lot of people, which makes arranging a traineeship or research study at a later stage much easier. Furthermore, there are internal vacancies you may be approached for, but in any case, you learn many skills that really help your career.”