"A rooftop bar would be really nice"
"Why am I a fan of the Faculty Club? Obviously because it is the most fun and welcoming club at Utrecht University! It's a nice place to meet up, have a bite to eat with my friends or meet colleagues. And I always enjoy catching up with bartender Pieter."
"My first introduction to the Faculty Club was actually coincidental when, in 2018, I was asked, together with my colleague Willemijn Dres, to assume the responsibilities of the club manager ad interim. My duties included communication and being responsible for the programme commission and I found that so incredibly enjoyable and fun. Before that, I did not know the Faculty Club at all. For me, it was a discovery. When Sandy became the new permanent club manager in 2019, I really wanted to stay involved. I succeeded: since then, I have been volunteering for the club. Among others, in the programme commission. Little did I know, because then came corona ... Against my will, we had to think totally out-of-the-box to keep things alive online and hybrid. This turned out to be unexpectedly great fun: think online bingo and an online escape room in the Academy Building. After the club reopened, everyone turned out to love physical meetings more than anything else. Mingling together, hopping from one group to another, socialising..."
Why am I a fan? Obviously because it is the most fun and welcoming club at Utrecht University!
From folding origami to shoving beer mugs
"We want the club to be alive. A jazz band used to play at the monthly Happy Hours; fun, but it always attracted the same crowd. Now we try to keep the activities really low key and change things up a bit. We played shuffleboard in the garden, the pub quiz is extremely popular and as far as I'm concerned, the New Year's Reception 2023 was legendary. Under the guise of après ski, you could join the Flügels, indulge in mega Jenga or shove beer mugs. But we also organise workshops on botanical drawing and origami folding, which, by the way, was taught by a talented science student. Sometimes we do this together with cultural centre Parnassos. Working together is an important aim of the programme commission anyway. For instance, we organise activities together with the International Neighbour group which focuses on international staff and PhD students, with Studium Generale or with the Utrecht Union. Students from the union have organised a series of interviews with Dutch celebrities at our place. Just a little namedropping: Caroline van der Plas was there, Epke Zonderland, Humberto Tan, Francine Oomen, Rutger Bregman, .... Then the club is packed with students. Great fun! And of course it is a great thing if they already know the Faculty Club, because before you know it they will be alumni too."
"Then I immediately have to think of 2022's Midsummer Night. The fortune-teller was a hit. And that among those historical walls here where science drips all over the place ... I was impressed with his accurate predictions myself, by the way. The Valentine's dinner 2023 was also top notch. Shared dining brought the table companions together naturally, a fast poet wrote poetry for the many couples present (including my boyfriend and me) and a lecture by special professor of sustainable relationships Esther Kluwer on the state of our relationships in the Netherlands. Our very own Dr Love, so to speak!"
Dreaming for a moment
"It's getting busier here with more and more new members. So how long will we fit in this historic building? I don't know. Personally, I don't say 'no' to another location or a pop-up club. A place somewhere with a cool beer cellar attached or a rooftop bar in the Van Unnik building? I can see it happening. Or an occasional big event in a special place, under the club's umbrella. That would be nice, wouldn't it? In the end, it's not just the location that makes the Faculty Club, it's the people."
What should always remain?
"The bites! I can sometimes really have cravings for the Faculty Club's bitterballen, cheese sticks and shrimp croquettes. Well, deep-fried does really appeal to me."
Sara Pot studied Educational Sciences in Utrecht; after her bachelor's, she did a master's in Governance and Policy. She started at the university as an event coordinator at the Alumni Office, went on to work for Protocol Affairs and worked as a project leader on the university's lustrum in 2021. Currently, she is a stakeholder relations adviser at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. Since academic year 2022-2023, she has been a general board member of the Faculty Club, the youngest yet.