• 27/05/2024

24 000 Antwerpse studenten gaan uit de bol tijdens welkomstfeest StuDay op Spoor Oost

ANTWERP – This afternoon, the city of Antwerp, student platform STAN (Student & Antwerp) and the Antwerp higher education institutions, organized the twentieth edition of StuDay, the free welcome festival for students in Antwerp. At Spoor Oost they had the opportunity to start the academic year festively with numerous musical acts and all kinds of side entertainment. Students were also introduced to what the city has to offer them. New this year was the Self Love Club, with which the organization draws attention to mental well-being.

Antwerp remains the second largest student city in Flanders and will again welcome more than 55,000 students this academic year, spread over 30 campuses. To bring them all together once a year, the city organizes the StuDay welcome party at Spoor Oost with STAN, the student platform, the Antwerp universities and colleges and the Antwerp Student Consultation. StuDay has been a permanent fixture since 2004, where the organization gives students a warm welcome to Antwerp and introduces them to each other and what the city has to offer.

Nearly 24,000 students claimed a free ticket for this 20th edition. The offer was again extensive and varied this year: there were games, sports, culture, lifestyle and lots of music. Various musical acts in various genres gave the best of themselves, spread over three stages. There were also numerous sporting activities, a lifestyle corner and a food space.

New this year was the Self Love Club, with which STAN wanted to focus on physical and mental self-care from a positive approach. Students could not only relax in hammocks in the Self Love Club, they could also receive massages, hair and facial care and workshops where they learned to cook simple but healthy meals in their student room. In addition, the well-being partners present such as VVS and Young Fenix ​​​​drew the visitors’ attention to mental well-being.

Studay is set up as an inclusive event, where all students feel safe and welcome and can join the Antwerp student community, regardless of skin color, gender, religion, origin, disability, sexuality or language. STAN immediately puts the theory, as included in the inspiration guide for welcome rituals, into practice. This inspiration guide, which was launched in 2022 after a year full of meetings and a major final debate, focuses on awareness and leadership about welcome rituals. The partners evaluate this guide annually so that it continues to evolve with today’s Antwerp student community.

Jinnih Beels (Vooruit), councilor for education and youth: ‘Studay has been the city’s welcome party for its students for twenty years. We would like to welcome each of them very much, but also show them the ropes. In addition to excellent educational quality at our higher education institutions, the right framework is also needed to excel. We offer this, for example, through the necessary attention to their mental well-being, introduction to the various youth work organizations and the inspiration guide for welcome rituals. So that every Antwerp student feels good and can grow into the best version of themselves.’

The organization also provided a Safe Space this year, which could be found in the Self Love Club. Students who did not feel safe or wanted to relax for a while could tell their story in this zone to professional supervisors in a safe environment. Students could obtain free water at various water points on the site to encourage zebra drinking, alternating between alcohol and water. (EM / Photo STAN)

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