The Programme Committee, for me, is an indispensable platform bringing students and faculty in a non-hierarchical, collaborative, democratic setting. It safeguards students’ right to have a say in the programme and brings the staff and the students closer. Evaluations play a significant role in this. As in the MA Programme Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image we find the input that UvA Q provides only of limited use, we organise a free discussion session among students twice a year. Organised by the student member of the Programme Committee, this meeting provides a democratic setting where students can openly communicate their evaluation and feedback. The input from this meeting is compiled into an anonymous report by the student member and presented to the staff. In a team meeting, we discuss the points raised by the students and compose a response. It is then my responsibility as the staff member to communicate this to the students.
In my three years of service in the Programme Committee, I have seen this dialogue-based structure creating a better understanding between students and faculty on many fronts. Most importantly, this model stimulates the active participation of students in education and policies, in order to maintain and ensure the quality of the programme, and of the faculty as a whole. The larger meetings organised by the faculty bring together student members from all programme committees and, in so doing, they enable students to connect with their peers and be cognizant of the problems as well as best practices at a faculty scale.