ESB Student Network goes online

How ESB student bodies are adapting to the digital summer semester

By Katrin Reil

The representatives of the Student Network at ESB Business School help first-year students to integrate and assimilate, organise events, send out weekly newsletters and coordinate volunteer work. This summer semester 2020, the job description of the student representatives has changed and the network has become more important than ever.

The Student Network of ESB Business School consists of representatives from programme networks StuBue, StuCo, IB Vision and StuVe as well as representatives from masters’ programmes. Normally they exchange information with each other and with the school board as required. This summer semester 2020, things have had to run differently. "Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have been meeting virtually every two weeks because so much is changing at the moment. These meetings take place together with the ESB Board and allow for a good exchange between students and professors," says Ciaran Green, President of StuBue. Prof. Dr. Christoph Binder, Dean of ESB Business School, also sees it this way: "In the current situation, students' need for information knows no bounds and the Student Network is an important contact point. The student representatives are on an equal footing with their fellow students, enabling them to support them directly and then pass on more complex issues to us so that we can deal with them accordingly".

The agenda has also changed this semester. Among other things, individual support for first semester and international students has been given even more attention this time than usual. "How our first-year students find their way around and get to know each other plays very much on our minds. It is very important for them to make friends quickly so that they can work and learn together in groups," according to Stefan Schweiger, President of StuVe.

Lili Poser, president of StuCo adds: "We use whatsapp and social media to actively seek contact with first year; exchange; and international students. We want them to experience the ESB spirit despite the current corona restrictions.

The close exchange between the individual representative groups is also currently strengthening the sense of community at ESB: "We are exchanging views on the current situation and reflecting on what is going well and what can be improved in order to provide the best possible support for students in these uncertain times," highlights Ellen Schrade from StuBue. "The ESB Student Network is intended to convey to everyone that we have an open door policy and are ready to help and advise", adds Ron Seidel.

Prof. Dr. Julia Brüggemann, Dean of Studies at ESB Business School, concludes by emphasising the key role of the Student Network at ESB: "The numerous activities of the Student Network are important building blocks that make up the whole study experience at ESB, firmly anchor our students in the ESB community and have a lasting impact on our alumni. The fact that our support association V.I.M.A. e.V. also promotes the activities of the Student Network shows how closely we work together. We benefit remarkably from this commitment and the great dedication of our student representatives, who have come out all guns blazing in this unusual summer semester 2020".