Last Tuesday too, students - mainly Germans, hence the term ‘German Run’ - were queuing up before opening hours (8:30) in order to obtain the best study places in the city centre library. “The glass private study cabins are the best study places,” Anna Schleifer, third-year student of Economics explains. The quiet areas on the first and second floor are also popular, say Fabian Gedden and Karim Itani, both second-year students of International Business (IB).
“If I stayed at home, I wouldn’t be studying at this time; there are too many distractions,” says Schleifer. “In the library, there is really a learning atmosphere,” Moritz von Friesen, first-year student of IB, adds.
Von Friesen: “The German Run used to be a lot tougher.” Previously, there was a lot of pushing and shoving. As soon as the doors opened, the students would rush in as fast as they could.
“The main objective was to stop the pushing and shoving, in order to prevent accidents. That is why we made a plan to control the massive influx. The aim is to change the students' behaviour. We have succeeded in making them realise that pushing is no longer effective,” says caretaker Roy Gilissen.
Students can now only gain entry into the library in the city centre through the Grote Looiersstraat; the entrance on the Nieuwenhofstraat has been closed. The early birds gather behind a crowd control barrier, where a security employee checks the students' UM cards and subsequently allows them to enter one by one. “I check cards from half past eight until five o'clock. About eight hundred cards a day. Add to this the students who step out for a cigarette or to get lunch,” says security officer Leo Steenland. You can only get in with a UM card. Steenland: “If you forget your card, you will have to go home and get it, or apply for a two-day permit from the Student Service Centre (SSC).”