It had been a Facebook rumour for some time but the official launch is next week. The Wageningen Student Union (WSO) and the Progressive Student Party (PSF) will be merging to form Pulse.
The merger between the student union and the Student Council party has been quite a challenge for the interim chairperson Romy Appelman over the past few months. ‘It is very confusing because we share the same name but are actually two different organizations. Pulse aims to improve conditions for students. One way of doing that is by influencing university policy through the Student Council. We prefer to have a separate board for that task so that the Student Council members are free to operate independently from the student union.'
Pulse will be in a transitional phase until the summer. Appelman wants to concentrate on getting the union functioning properly over the coming period. Former WSO services such as the second-hand bookshop, the delivery bikes and the working groups will get a new lease of life. Appelman says the working groups will be at the heart of Pulse. ‘They will be actively tackling specific student issues such as accommodation, internationalization and teaching. These working groups are our think tanks, as it were, since they are closely involved in student life.'
It is not yet clear where the new union will have its headquarters. ‘WSO was supposed to move from Arion to the Building with the Clock but it would be better for the Student Council party to be in Forum because of the meetings. A solution might be difficult to find because there is not much room in Forum. We are still in discussions about this with the university.'