Lasse Christian Daegling has not felt as if he has been studying at CBS over the past year. And he has a perfect frame of reference for comparison because he took his entire bachelor’s degree at CBS before coronavirus hit. And he is currently studying for his MSc (cand.merc) in International Marketing and Management in his second year.
“Being at home studying online is far from the same as being on campus, where you can have vibrant discussions with teachers and your fellow students. Then there are all the other things going on outside the classrooms. Events, Thursday bars at Café Nexus, interesting talks and just hanging out with your study group. I miss that,” he says.
This semester start will be like no other, because not only is CBS welcoming 3,230 new bachelor’s students, the university will also be reintroducing second- and third-year bachelor’s, and second-year master’s students to life on campus.
“When I was hiring study start guides together with the two study start coordinators, the students had to students introduce themselves to each other even though they are from the same year, simply because they had not met each other before. To me that illustrates the situation we’re in, and why they need a new study start,” says Maria Isabel Christensen, Program Manager for HA Psyk. and Project leader of the rebooting project.
The project has been developed in a sub-committee comprised by different representatives from the Study Administration, and among other things, they have come up with a catalogue of activities and inspiration for the study boards and students to carry out during the fall.
For example, the teachers and program directors are being encouraged to attend an academic reintroduction to what the students have learned over the past year and what they can look forward to in the coming semester. And for the social part, students and study boards can arrange canoe trips, picnics, go bowling or spend a day at Tivoli and more besides. All on CBS.
“The social aspect of going to a university is important. It is almost more vital than the academic aspect. Because if you are thriving at university and have a great and safe study environment, it rubs off on the academic part. A lot of students don’t thrive online,” says Henrik Sornn-Friese, Academic Director for the 14 cand.merc. programs.
Skipping an exchange trip for the full CBS experience
Henrik Sornn-Friese explains that the study board sfor the cand.merc programs have been working on socially rebooting their students for quite a while. For example, they are currently converting parts of the basement at Graduate House into a social lounge for the students.
“We want to create these oases where students can hangout and meet. There’s a social vacuum that we need to deal with, and it’s important that we do something because they have missed out on so much,” he says.
For Lasse Christian Daegling, it is important that CBS proactively helps students who have been trapped at home for so long and missed out on a lot of the experiences CBS would normally have offered students while they were studying.
“Many students have not experienced what it is actually like to study at CBS. I have, but the past year has been so different. Except for my intro last summer, I have not been together with my entire class yet, and now we have electives and after that I have my thesis, so I really want to talk to a lot of students. Both from my own program and the other cand.merc programs,” he says.
In fact, Lasse Christian Daegling has missed CBS so much that he has decided not to go on exchange this semester.
“I said no to an exchange trip, as I want to enjoy all the good things CBS has to offer. As I mentioned before, Thursday Bars at Café Nexus, the career fairs, joining some interesting speeches and other events,” he says.
The rebooting project will take place this fall, and the various social activities that the Study Administration is offering can be booked through the study boards and by thr students, with help from the local wellbeing ambassadors, explains Tasja Rodian, Program Manager and member of the sub-committee of the Rebooting project.
“We want to help the students as much as we can, because, of course, returning to campus can feel quite overwhelming. But hopefully, this will give them a sense of belonging and a proper feeling of what studying at CBS is like,” she says.