Past and present

Student protest


Studenten zitten rondom een tafel, 1969
Image: DPG Media via Het Utrechts Archief


A growing number of students were extremely dissatisfied with the lack of student participation. On 6 October, they demanded, from the podium of the trustees meeting, that the trustees make a statement regarding public access to the meetings of the university’s executive committee.

The meeting was suspended, the trustees discussed a number of other issues during their lunch elsewhere. They refused, however, to comply with the request for public access, despite a telephone call from the students, around fifty of whom were by that time occupying the ‘trustees room’ at Achter de Dom 7.

Studenten zitten in een kring. Er hangt een spandoek. 2023
Image: Utrecht University


In May, students throughout the country occupied university buildings to voice their concerns over the climate emergency. In Utrecht on the 8th of May, the group ‘End Fossil Occupy Utrecht’ occupied the foyer of the Minnaert building. In a manifesto they demanded, among other things, that the university cut all ties with the fossil industry. The occupation was relatively uneventful. The Executive Board engaged in a dialogue with the students on a number of occasions. Although, according to the activists, their demands were not met, they left after three days. But not before a protest march to the Administration Building reinforced their statement once again.