How is it like to be a Master’s student in our double-degree programme in Public Policy and Human Development? How do our students experience their study year in Maastricht and how do they spend their free time? Manisha Kalikadien, who served as student representative in the Education Committee, shared her testimonial at the closing ceremony of the MPP Class of 2014-2015 on 11 June 2015.
After spending four years in Maastricht, I can only say that this year has been one of the most amazing ones. At the start of this study, I knew it was going to be a great year and I hoped that we would all become friends. But instead of becoming just friends, I feel like we have become somewhat of a family. Together we laugh, we cry (with all those deadlines), we study hard but party even harder. And like any family, we fight. But for me that’s just a sign that we all care. We care about our study, we care about our future and we care about each other.
I am so lucky to be part of this amazing group of people who are trying to turn this world into a better place and I am positive that our year here together in Maastricht has shaped us all for the better. This year has brought many people from different countries closer together. Throughout the year, many of us went together on small trips in the Netherlands and in Europe. But besides friendship, there was also love. In fact, some couples were formed, and who knows, maybe there will be some MPP babies in the future!
What I will miss most are our awesome times together. All those nice drinks, fun birthday parties and delicious international dinners at the Ma van Sloun, as well as the fun nights at the Take Five. Getting fries at the Lucky Luke in the middle of the night before everyone headed to the Alla. And of course I will miss our fun karaoke nights, the awesome parties at the Three Stooges’ house and Loz’s homemade meals, which I’m sure all of you will miss too! Going to the city park for a nice afternoon in the sun, playing guitar and soccer, and just enjoying the relaxed atmosphere.
But as much as we love to chill and hang out, we also care about fighting inequality and prejudice. Some of you have been volunteering at the Refugee Centre in Maastricht, organising a United-In-Sports day as well as a donation day. Others were part of the Team Happy in the Night of The Refugee where they walked for over 40 km! I am so proud to be part of this amazing group of people who are already actively contributing to making this world a better, more tolerant and more peaceful place, and I can only hope that you will inspire others as much as you have inspired me.
I wish we had more time together, because I feel as if this year went by way too fast. During the second semester, I think most of you hung out more with people of your own specialisation… although this was not always voluntarily. I’m looking at the Migration and Social Protection specialisation groups now, who had classes every day from 9 till 6. Seeing everyone together today in front of me made me wish we would have just one more day, one more week or one more month together to have more of those interesting and intellectually challenging conversations together. Such great people, such great minds!
Last but not least, I want to emphasise how much I enjoyed being your student representative and voicing your opinion in the Education Committee. I remember how those EduCom meetings always take a bit longer than expected because everyone wants to make the most of them. Therefore, I want to thank all members of the Education Committee for all their efforts and time spent on improving the programme for years to come. I think we did a great job and I’m positive that the next people will very much enjoy working with you. I also want to thank DEMOS for all their efforts in organising the international dinners, the winter ball and our awesome MPP hoodies! A special thanks also goes to the Yearbook Committee, we are all looking forward to the end-result! Finally, I want to thank Janneke and Lutz for organising this closing ceremony. And thank you again for all your efforts throughout this academic year.
Dear friends, dear family, thank you all for making this a memorable year! I wish you all the best with your next steps in life and I hope you continue to be the incredible people that you are! As Churchill once said: “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” Thank you very much!