The jury selected six finalists from some 25 student submissions. The jury felt that Giselle’s column stood out. “The column deals with a personal experience, but is written in a way that makes it interesting to a broader Erasmus audience”, says Ronald van Raak, professor of Erasmian values and a member of the jury.

Jury member Dino Gačević (medical student and columnist): “The story has a good flow – and it’s funny, too. The point she’s making is layered and it gets you thinking. That’s exactly what you want in a column: persuasive in terms of humour, observation skills and a good feel for language and style.”

Giselle studies Management of International Social Challenges and Philosophy and will be writing a column for EM every month from now on. “I moved to Rotterdam from Utrecht with the idea that it would all be fun, magical and exciting: going out, cultural life in the city, making new friends”, she says.  “I think a lot of students think that, but in actual fact we know that this kind of ideal world doesn’t really exist in most cases.”

She wants to write about that field of tension, with Rotterdam as the backdrop. “I want to show people that student life extends beyond the campus, the Smitse and the Beurs, using Sex and the city, the series and the original columns, are sources of inspiration. They feed an over-the-top fantasy, but also dare to be raw and sobering.”

Read Giselle’s winning column here:

Giselle Timmers 1_2023_2560_Pauline Wiersema_Levien Willemse

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