Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences leaving it at this

Winterse dag op de campus_Amber Leijen_vrije opdracht (18)

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Concerns about racist and antisemitic posts in student app group

In an app group for third-year students studying at Erasmus University College (EUC),…

The Executive Board of Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences (Hogeschool Rotterdam, HR) originally also planned to report the incident, since it involved a number of its students. But now they’ve decided to leave it at this. “We haven’t pushed forward with the report due to the commotion surrounding the Covid crisis,” explained HR’s Board Chair, Ron Bormans, in the university of applied sciences’ online magazine Profielen.

In early February, the students in question – all members of the Skadi rowing club – shared dozens of racist, anti-Semitic and sexist images in an app group for third-year students at Erasmus University College (EUC). Their actions caused quite a stir.

At the time, the Chair of the EUR Executive Board, Hans Smits, told Erasmus Magazine that he had taken the students in question to account for their behaviour. “We find the sharing of offensive material unacceptable and do not tolerate this behaviour. I have talked individually to the students involved. As EUR’s administrators, we believe that the university should be a safe environment for everyone to study and work. We consequently take an incident like this very seriously and will definitely take the appropriate measures in response – such as preparing a report to the authorities, for example,” said Smits.

‘Sincere remorse’

University of applied sciences Chair Bormans stated he “isn’t happy” about the fact that his institution didn’t make more work of the report. “We’ve carefully deliberated whether we should yet go ahead with our plan. At the same time, we’ve concluded that the students have seen the errors of their ways and have spent sufficient time reflecting on their behaviour. They’ve shown sincere remorse for what they’ve done and a willingness to learn from their mistakes. The students should be able to learn from the measures taken. In view of this – and the time that has passed due to our procrastination – we’ve decided against filing a report against these students.”

Hans Smits voorzitter college van bestuur 3 – Aysha Gasanova

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