How do student associations persuade Eurekaweek visitors to become a member? And how has recruitment been going so far? EM visits three student associations to find out.
Stop 1 - Laurentius: 'We are a bit more sincere than the corps fraternity'
It’s mainly members, recognisable by their red clothes, who seem to be populating the Laurentius terrace at the end of the afternoon. There are only a few Eurekaweek visitors around. So the Laurentius promo team can relax on the benches or ‘dry out’ in the Jacuzzi, explains second year member and medical student Amber. “Here on the terrace, we don’t do much active recruiting. That tends to happen more during the Eurekaweek festival activities.”
And you soon get an idea who’s interested at these activities. “Usually it’s the students who are uncertain who come up to you. Or they circle you looking a bit hesitant,” laughs Wieke, another second year member. They mainly ask questions about the initiation, or about the differences between Laurentius and the corps fraternity. Marja, the most left wing and first year member, comments: “In the past, we always used to say that the main difference was the mixed aspect of Laurentius. But we can’t say that now that the RSC and RVSV have merged.” What Amber often uses as an argument: “What I notice and what I then tell anyone in doubt is that we at Laurentius are slightly more sincere than the corps.”
Stop 2 - RSC/RVSV: 'The merger was a good step'
There’s a good atmosphere at RSC/RVSV when EM arrives at around 5.00 p.m. A lot of time and money has gone into creating a larger terrace than in previous years (designed by a committee member and his father). A DJ is playing tunes and on the top floor there’s a silent disco. But most people are just enjoying a drink.
Econometrics student Laura Nieberg (20), wearing the bright pink shirt of the enrolment committee, explains that a good line-up during Eurekaweek is the main attraction and this method works well: “Last Monday, when we had rapper Boef performing here, there were queues of students at the door.” The RSC/RVSV also uses first years, dressed in dark blue with pink letters, in the promo committee. Instructions on who has to be where are written in a special book.
At RSC/RVSV too, they hear lots of doubts among students. “Usually about whether they ought to become a member in the first year, due to N=N, or about money. On the subject of money, I always say: you can make it as expensive or cheap as you want. There are no obligations.” Enrolments are going well. RSC/RVSV only has 30 more places before it reaches the limit of 400. Nieberg explains: “The merger was a good step. People used to waver between Lauri and us, now they just choose the corps.”
Stop 3 - NSR: 'We drink beer too, get a bit drunk and dance to nice tunes'
Drifting over Eendrachtsplein, you can hear ‘Rockabye baby’ by Clean Bandit from the terrace of the Navigators. Students are enjoying their pasta salad. Despite all the fun, NSR doesn’t really need Eurekaweek to recruit new members, says Christine Slings (20). “70 to 80 percent know in advance that they want to become a member, because we are Christians. So the committee has quite a chilled time,” laughs the promotion commissioner at NSR. “There’s less pressure. And the other associations don’t consider you as competition.” Slings doesn’t want to say how many new members have joined. “But the ab-actis and preses who organise the enrolments are busy.”
If they don’t need it to recruit new members, why is NSR taking part in Eurekaweek? “We can use this week to raise the profile of NSR and to fulfil our motto: ‘Get to know Christ and make Him known’. We can show that faith doesn’t mean not having fun. We drink beer too, get a bit drunk and dance to nice tunes.”