Open Letter: “Thymos”

Dear Council,

In this letter, I will explain why SWU Thymos is against evening lectures. From a sportive view, several arguments are being posed. In other words, I hope to guarantee the interests of sporting students in Wageningen with this letter.

SWU Thymos is the sports foundation/council of Wageningen and tries to create the best sporting climate for students. SWU Thymos organizes sports events and internal competitions between students. At the moment, 27 student sports associations are represented by SWU Thymos. About 70 different sports can be practiced at Sports Centre de Bongerd. Our organization is of high value to the sporting students, because sports is an excellent way to spend your leisure time, to relax from studying or to meet other students to sports with. From a study viewpoint, students perform better in their studies if they get enough physical activity per week. With that being said, sports highly contributes to the student experience at the WUR.

SWU Thymos currently represent 4590 students that are active in doing sports in Wageningen. About 1800 of these sporting students are member of a student sports association. Student sports associations have their training mostly in the evening from Monday through Friday. A lot of sporting students may not be able to attend the training(s) from their student sport association if evening lectures are implemented. Moreover, they may also not be able to attend social events that are organized by their sport association.

Other sporting students who are not member of a student sports association, the so-called unbound sporters, take part in sports courses provided by the Bongerd. These sporting students also include students that make use of the gym, the squash courts, tennis courts or the swimming pool. Some sports courses are only given in the evening hours and some of the free swimming time is only available in the evening. Therefore, student who wants to do these sports activities may also not be able anymore to do these in the evening, if evening lectures are implemented

The pilot study had some an impact on some sporting students, especially the fact that they had to miss their training from their association. Training hours, in general, do not change much, so it can be unfortunate for some students when there is a conflict between their lectures and training. If 50% of the students would have two evening lectures per week, it could result in missing zero, one or two trainings.

SWU Thymos does not want to draw a borderline on evening lectures. The fact is, some training hours already start at 5:30 PM. Drawing a borderline on evening lectures, saying they may take until 8 PM, wouldn’t help these students either. The sporting climate in Wageningen is very good. You can see this when looking at all the bicycles that are parked around the Bongerd in the evening. We want to keep it that way. Implementing evening lectures would significantly lower the quality of sports experience in Wageningen.

With sportive regards,

Filip Hendricks

Chairman DB ‘16/’17″