The University Council decided last week that there will be Dutch language courses for foreign council members who have no or insufficient command of Dutch. Immediately after the election results have become known, the newly appointed members will receive a letter from the chairman of the university council, prof. Herman Kingma.
The lessons are considered necessary because many documents circulating in the UM’s administrative circles are in Dutch, despite efforts to translate as much as possible into English. There is a legal obligation with regard to certain documents that they are in the official national language, such as the university’s annual report. Texts from the ministry are also in Dutch. Although there is no formal obligation to follow the language course, the University Council feels that there is a moral duty. Kingma: “I will make it very clear that everyone will be expected to participate. As far as I am concerned, those who drop out halfway through the course, will have to pay back some of the course fee.” Those who complete the course, will not have to pay anything, the courses being subsidised by the university.
Members of the faculty councils or Education Committees who want to make use of the same facilities, will have to apply for faculty subsidies.