Sebastian Krantz for AAC Chair

By: Tsjalline Boorsma

Can you introduce yourself?

My name is Sebastian, I just turned 22 years old and I am currently in my second semester here at UCR. Following my plans as of now, I am going to major in Mathematics and Social Science. Before attending UCR, I have lived in Rwanda for one year while partaking in a developmental volunteer service. I also studied at a German university for one semester. Besides various sports, I like to hang out with people, play billiard, and I am a passionate photographer. Currently, I am also coordinator of the Ultimate Frisbee team at UCR.

When did you decide you wanted to run?

I knew from the very start of my studies at UCR that I wanted to run for AAC, but the decision to actually become chair only formed in the last two months.

Why this board?

I think the AAC has a very important function in being the bridge between faculty and the student body, and to represent student’s interests in the Board of Studies. The AAC also provides students with various relevant information sources and opportunities, enabling them to make the most of their studies at UCR – the primary reason why we are all here. That is why I have always found the AAC more appealing than other boards, although they are of course all very important. I consider being part of the AAC a privilege, and at the same time a task involving great responsibilities. A challenge that I am aware of and that I am willing to take.

Why do you feel you would be the right person for this position?

I think that through my experiences over the last two years with fundraising activities and NGO work, as well as teaching small groups and being a sports coordinator, I have gained various insights and skills that would make me able to take a chair position.  From past experience I know that I have a broad interest and am in many ways also broadly skilled: I love to be involved in all kinds of tasks and at the same time stay on top of things – which is similar to what chairs normally do.

In my semesters so far at UCR, I have been in close contact with some of the current AAC members and also attended most of their events, which gave me with a good impression of what their functions are all about.

Through conversations with various peers, I also feel like I have gathered some ideas of what most people decry within UCR current policy. Many students think that UCR is becoming too stiff and bureaucratic. I believe that this is an issue that can be solved through more transparency and conversation, in first place through enhancing the information flow between the board of studies and the student population, for which the AAC provides a bridge. If I get elected, I would thus put my energy into making more Board of Studies decisions and activities public, so that students can view an issue from all different angles, as well as things like course evaluations. I also consider it really important to survey the student population more frequently (e.g. via Facebook), and present these results to the BoS. Perhaps there can even be a possibility of student veto to BoS decisions. I believe that in this way we can find long-term solutions to ongoing issues like the Capstone- or language requirement, and nobody would feel anymore like things are just happening without their consent.

Tsjalline Boorsma, class of 2016, is a Human Geography and Anthropology major from Groningen, the Netherlands.

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