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You are all invited to the VUB Student Conference on the 21st of February. Those who register first will obtain a seat in one of the focus groups.

The International Students Platform in partnership with the Student Council invites all students to participate in a conference that seeks to activate the student participation in general. According to the lead initiator Jimmy Hendry Nzally, Ph.D. student in Political Sciences, there is a need to debate the core values of the VUB. The discussion should enhance the collaboration between international and local students and inspire students to internalise values such as critical thinking. This vision was outlined during his 2017-2018 academy opening speech at Bozar.


Jimmy has always been an active student. Back in The Gambia he started a semester long leadership programme entitled The University of The Gambia Leadership Fellowship. A programme that gives students the opportunity to study problems at grassroot level and come up with solutions or recommendations whilst engaging stakeholders.


He continued his engagement after he arrived at the VUB. ASCOM, for example, is the result of his efforts to pull African students out of their comfort zone and confront them with their Belgian colleagues.


As chairman of the ISP he is convinced that all students should think and debate about the core values of the VUB, more precisely about critical thinking and internationalisation. These might not be questioned enough by all students, that’s why Jimmy argues that a thorough discussion is needed to enable students to identify themselves with these values.


Therefore, he is organising this conference, giving all students the opportunity to discuss their point of view. Apart from a closer collaboration between local and international students, this might lead to a platform on which students engage themselves in a shared vision on participation and hopefully some concrete recommendations.


Practical information


The conference is split up in two parts. The first one starts at 5 pm with four focus groups:


  1. Role of the university students in Internationalisation
  2. Ways for local and international students to interact outside the classroom
  3. Strengthening Student Leadership and Engagement at the VUB
  4. Refugee and Migration Integration: VUB as a Case Study


The number of seats in these groups is restricted to 20. So, if you’re interested, do register now through


At 6 pm follows the Town-Hall Meeting in D2.01, in which each group will have a 5 minutes presentation and 10 minutes Q/A with the top management of the VUB, including the rector. Prof. Dr. Caroline Pauwels