Audit GA 16th of April 7pm

Let your voice be heard!
Have an influence!

On the 16th of April you, the Universalis member, can have an influence on Universalis’ policy and you can check on what we have done during last semester. It is very important that you as a member are not only involved in day-to-day issues and events, but also during GA’s so we can together decide upon the future of the organisation.

Independent Body
Our Independent Body consists of the following five member who will be presenting their report.

  • Meagan Jongepier (Chair)
  • Julien Beuken
  • Cas van der Hoven
  • Jan Meijer
  • Olof van der Werf

They were assigned by the Board to check our financials and our general policy of the Fall semester of 2013. If you click on the link below you can read their report and the motions they propose. These motions will be voted on during the GA.

Independent Body report Fall 2013

Other Motions
Next to the motions proposed by the Independent Body, the Board also has a few motions which can be read by clicking on the link below.

Motions Audit GA April 2014 Board

Your Motion
Of course it is also possible for you as a member to propose a motion on the Policy Manual, we would actually like to encourage you to read the Policy Manual and if you would like to make a change or add something to propose a motion. You can file a motion by filling in the form below and sending it to at least a week before the GA so they can be published on the website and Facebook.

Motion Form Audit GA

The Bell #2, #3 & #4


Click here to read the second issue of The Bell

Click here to read the third issue (holiday edition) of The Bell

Click here to read the fourth issue of The Bell

Motions for Emergency GA

Motions for Statute Amendments

General Assembly 3rd of July 2013


Article 4   Membership

4.2 Members are those who have registered in writing and admitted as a member. Membership is stated in a certificate issued by the Board. In case the Board does not accept, the General Assembly can still decide to admit a member. Members should be enrolled as a student at University College Maastricht, part of the University of Maastricht.


Explanation: The original motion of letting UCM students automatically become a member when enrolled at UCM cannot be executed, because it is by law prohibited to force membership of a certain association upon someone.


Article 5   Membership

5.2 Termination of membership by the member can be made at any time. This termination occurs in writing to the board with a notice of 4 weeks.


Explanation: First, this article was followed by the sentence “If the notice has not been in time, the membership will continue until the end of next financial year”. That would be contradicting, so I decided to remove the statement about membership continuation until the end of next financial year, so that membership termination can actually be made at any time.


Article 10   Board

10.2 The authority of representing the entire association must be shared by at least two board members, of which one has to execute the function of President, Secretary or Treasurer.


Explanation: It is very reasonable to have at least two board members together sharing the representation of the whole association. The determination concerning consent of the whole board is redundant; this consent is always given internally and never externally.


Motions submitted by Olof van der Werf

Rosa Vendel: Making The World More Beautiful

Making the world more beautiful

Migration is a wide-ranging topic, affecting people all over the world. Worldwide there were 10,404,806 refugees and asylum seekers in 2012. In the same year, there were 74,961 refugees and 13,053 asylum seekers staying in the Netherlands.  Migration is broadly discussed in the Netherlands, due to controversial incidences, the most recent being the Vluchtkerk (literally ‘flight church’, also known as the refugee church). The Vluchtkerk is a church in Amsterdam that is occupied by a group comprised of over 100 asylum seekers, all of whom are facing deportation. The asylum seekers have set a great example to other asylum seekers in the Netherlands, by standing up for their own rights and demanding respect from the authorities. This protest is only a small example of the major effects of border control on migrants. Amnesty International is currently standing up for the rights of migrants and asylum seekers in European countries and according to Amnesty, some border control measurements have contributed to the serious violation of human rights.

It is clear that migration is an important topic concerning many more people than only the migrants crossing borders. However, the discussion on migration often takes place on such an abstract level that we tend to forget the actual faces, stories and lives underneath the surface. This is essential when examining different issues with migration in order to acquire true awareness and understanding. It is one of the reasons why the Mirroring Migration festival was organized 22-27 April 2013. The festival offered many different events, the first being an interactive theatre workshop held by Farhad and Nasrin Foroutanian. As both Farhad and Nasrin are refugees from Iran, their personal experience made the workshop into a fascinating experience.

The participants came in, and were then asked to show their passport and give personal information.  ‘Why are you here? Who else knows you are here? Does your family know?’ They were then placed either in a red or a yellow area in the room and forced to wait, uncertain of what was about to happen. The red area was meant for those who did not bring an ID card, or who showed suspicious behavior. The yellow area was meant for people who were able to identify themselves. The aim of this rather strange start of the workshop was to give the participants a hint of how it feels to enter a country as a refugee. Next, participants were given different fascinating stories from refugees and were asked to read them out loud. When everyone was finished, Nasrin pointed out to one of the stories saying: ‘This one is mine’.

Most interesting however are perhaps Farhad and Nasrin themselves, and the way they are able to handle severe stories with humor and enthusiasm. In Iran, Nasrin had a successful career as an actress in TV series and films. Farhad, apart from acting, is also an artist. His way of making art differs from painting to making cartoons for newspapers. Cartoons are for him a way to express political opinions.

‘Beauty, of course, is the most important element in our work. The world is not always beautiful, also not aesthetically. If you look from up above, some parts of the world are very beautiful, some are rotten. It can be much more beautiful. If the world becomes more beautiful, we become more beautiful as well. This is the task of the artist. To make the world more beautiful.’

Farhad currently does cartoons for the main Dutch and German newspapers. Before however, he was making his art under the threat and censorship of the Iranian government. Nasrin and Farhad were forced to leave Iran, as their opinion on the government was no longer tolerated. After traveling with a theatre group and living in Italy for seven years, their road led to the Netherlands where they have been living to this day. They were not allowed to return to Iran for over fifteen years. Now, they occasionally return and use theatre to create space for discussion of different taboos in the country. Also in the Netherlands they organize different theatre workshops to raise awareness on different matters. Theatre allows people to actually experience something instead of just listening to a lecture or reading a book. This is why creativity is such an important way of communicating to them. Farhad: ‘The main concerns in my work are justice and truth. It is that simple. Justice is what we need in order to survive in this world. That is what drives me. That is what I find very important and what I try to communicate. And truth cannot be found. Truth is hope, such as democracy, it simply does not exist. But it gives us a direction, gives us trust to follow a certain road. This is what connects people to each other’.


Universalis: Casino Royale

For one night only…

Universalis is transforming UCM into a casino, replete with blackjack, poker, roulette, and a wheel of fortune. Join us in our celebration of the past year, and the Spring 2013 Board’s final farewell.

Many prizes will be on offer. Buy tickets ahead of time to avoid disappointment.

Ticket price- 10 euros.. includes poker chips!
Ticket sales start Monday the 10th in the Universalis Board room and the Common Room. You can also make use of the Universalis Green Box. Put the money in an envelope and don’t forget to write your name & i-number on it!

Date: June 13
Time: 7.00-23.30pm

Updated: Motions for the upcoming GA

We hereby publish the motions that will be addressed in the General Assembly on May 22.

  2. Universalis-—-Motion-Form COMMITTEE INCOME PROCEDURES
  3. Motion independent body b
  4. Motion Independent Body

If there will be more motions submitted we will add the motion to the list.

The Bell #1

New President Elected; Old President Remains in Office

Since yesterday we know who will be the new president of the study association. A vast majority gave support to the old/new president of the association. When Elliot ran for president a semester ago he already assured that he would like to run for a second term. Since we just had the shift from semester long to Year long terms we hereby announce that Elliot Burke-Perrin will be the president for the Academic Year of 2013/14.

Although he did not have direct competition from another candidate people had the choice to vote against him. Nevertheless, 88% of UCM students voted for him and thus supported his decision to guide Universalis for an additional year. Let us hope for a prosperous future with great activities, challenging competitions and inspiring talks. We, the board of Universalis, is grateful for your participation and thank you for showing your support to the association. Keep up your spirit and foster the community we have at UCM.

Jan Steinke

Universalis General Assembly

The semester is over, the academic year is coming to an end. A lot has changed and a lot has to be discussed. Topics in the upcoming GA are the approval of the board for Fall 2013, the expenditure of the association (future and past), possible changes to the statutes and motions to the newly implemented policy manual.

This GA the board will present a new version of the Statutes to bring it up to date with our new policy manual. You can find our proposed new version on this page.

If you want to submit a motion to the policy manual or to the Statutes proposal find the motion form on the Universalis website ( along with a digital copy of the policy manual. The motion deadline is 24 hours before the start of the GA (so 21/5/2013 at 6:30PM). Motions will be published as soon as possible after submission.

UCMSA Universalis Proposed Statutes Spring 2013

Guest Lecture: Environmental Warfare, Humanitarian Disasters, and Indirect Genocide

Extract-Universalis are pleased to announce the following guest lecture:

‘Environmental Warfare, Humanitarian Disasters, and Indirect Genocide’ by Professor Emmanuel H. Kreike of Princeton University.

The lecture will take place on 15th May starting at 18.00 in the UCM Lecture Hall.

Emmanuel Kreike, has a PhD in African history from Yale University (1996) and a Dr. Science (PhD) in Tropical Forestry from the School of Environmental Sciences, Wageningen University (2006), the Netherlands. His research and teaching interests focus on the intersection of war/violence, population displacement, environment, and society. He is particularly interested in how violence (including, for example, colonial conquest, the apartheid wars, slave raiding) and ensuing forced migration led to the destruction of human landscapes and how people rebuild lives and livelihoods in often alien environments. He has taught courses in African history and environmental history at Princeton University as well as courses in forestry and environmental sciences in Namibia and South Africa.

His publications include Re-Creating Eden: Land Use, Environment, and Society in Southern Angola and Northern Namibia (Heinemann, 2004) and Deforestation and Reforestation in Namibia: The Global Consequences of Local Contradictions (Brill and Markus Wiener, 2010). With William Chester Jordan he edited Corrupt Histories (University of Rochester Press, 2004).

He is completing two book-length manuscripts. “Architects of Nature: Environmental Infrastructuring and the Myth of Natural Resources Management” introduces a new conceptualization and vocabulary to analyze and narrate environmental change beyond the constraints of the Nature-Culture dichotomy (contracted by Cambridge University Press and forthcoming 2012). “Environmental Warfare, Humanitarian Disasters, and Indirect Genocide: From the Conquest of Mexico to the Apartheid Wars”(contracted by Princeton University Press) discusses environmental warfare throughout four major colonial wars: the 16th-19th century European Conquest of the Americas, the late 16th/early 17th century Dutch Revolt/War of Flanders in the Low Countries, the late 19th century Aceh Wars on Sumatra, Indonesia, and the early 20th century Portuguese and South African conquest of the Ovambo floodplain in Angola and Namibia.