Board year at Commotie

Information about a board year

What exactly means doing a board year? And how much time will it cost you being a board member? On this page you can discover what a board year at Commotie looks like! The current board, Study Advisor of CIS Marloes Bergmans and Professor & Head of the clusterboard of CIS Tom Koole will tell you all you need to know about a board year. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the current board via

How to apply?

On the 15th of April there will be a general information evening about doing a board year. On this evening, the current board will give information about being a board member and they will tell you all about their functions. Besides, you can ask anything you want to know about a board year during this evening.

Do you prefer a personal chat with one of the board members? You can contact us by sending an email or texting us. 

You can apply from March 29th on, by sending your resume and motivation letter to The application deadline is May 3rd, 2020. Don't forget to mention and explain your function preferences!

In general

Being the board means you are the beating heart of the association: you're responsible for everything within the association. You have to take responsibility towards others outside of the association and you are one of the contact persons for external parties. One of your responsibilities as the board is to offer a variety of activities to your members. This also means that you have to be present at every activity. Besides, you implement your policy throughout the year. In your candidate period you write a policy plan together with your candidate board members and once this is accepted you're the new board and you can start carrying out your new ideas. 
You carry out a lot of tasks that aren't always visible for your members. Examples are meetings with other parties and activities with other associations or boards in Groningen or The Netherlands. During your board year you meet a lot of different new people and your social network expands a lot! Besides, you gain a lot of practical experience during your board year, which can be very useful for your future. You learn, for example, to plan and organize events and to collaborate with a lot of different people. A board year is the perfect opportunity to develop yourself personally and professionally!

As you can tell, or already knew, being the board will cost you some time. But, don't worry! You're able to study besides your board tasks, because a board year at Commotie is only part time. You can compare it to a part time job and this means you won't spend all of your time on Commotie. Depending on your function and if you want some study delay or not, you can keep following your courses. It is up to yourself how many courses you want to follow per block during your board year, and you can also decide for yourself when you'll work on your board to do's. This makes it very flexible and gives you time and space for other things such as studying, work, sports or social activities. And, last but not least, you'll get a refund from the University for your board year. So, besides developing yourself and gaining experience, you'll also earn some money!

Function specific

Every function within the board has its own specific tasks and activities. These are not always visible for members and therefore, the current board will explain to you what their functions contain and tell you about their tasks. 


Chairman '20-'21 Vera van der Meer

The Chairman of Commotie is the face of the association. I am responsible for all final decisions on matters within the association, but also towards external parties.

The tasks of a chairman can vary a lot, every day is different. I make the agendas and lead meetings such as board meetings, Advisory Council meetings and General Members Assemblies (GMA). Next to this, I am the contact person of the association and I give speeches and presentations during GMAs, Introduction Days, Student-for-a-day days, Bachelor Awards, etc. 

I attend the monthly SVOs (Study Association Assemblies of the Faculty of Arts) and stay in contact with our sister associations from communication studies all over The Netherlands during our bimonthly Skype meetings. Furthermore, I stay in contact with the department of CIS to stay up to date on the study program. The Commissioner of Internal Affairs and I have four meetings with the contact person of CIS per year and the Secretary and I attend several staff meetings. 

The Chairman is also responsible for updating the LinkedIn of Commotie and the alumni group (Columni) with all study-related activities. 

Of course members cannot see everything I do as a Chairman, a lot happens behind the scenes. It is my job to lead the rest of the board, but at the same time I am of course also part of the team. Moreover, I have to keep track of the policy plan which we wrote at the beginning of our board year. I am always checking what steps we have to carry out for our policy and support the rest of the board in this as well. As a chairman, you have to stay up to date about what is going on at all times by staying in close contact with the rest of your board and by keeping a good overview. Sometimes you have to be strict if things are not happening according to the plan. 

Applying for the board was the best decision I could make! I was always interested because the study association really made me feel at home from the start and I wanted to give this feeling to new first years as well! I love being part of this amazing team and am very grateful that I have them in my life! A board year is also really good for your personal development, I really stepped out of my comfort zone and got to know myself better during this year. 

If you have any questions, let me know! And if you’re interested in a board year I am always up for a walk, talk or coffee. Don’t hesitate to contact me!

Secretary '20-'21 Yente Visser

Being the Secretary means you're responsible for all internal and external communication of the association. This means you have a lot of different tasks, but my main task is to keep the board mail up to date and to answer incoming emails. Besides the board mail, I write the monthly newsletter and the newsletter of Columni (alumni association of Commotie) 4 times a year in Mailchimp. Using Mailchimp is a nice way to make the design of your emails more attractive and what I like about that is that you can decide about the design yourself. I also use Mailchimp for emails about activities, external parties and other important information. Writing emails is a good way to put your communication skills into practice, so it's a perfect addition to studying CIS. 

Besides writing emails, I'm also responsbile for writing the minutes during every meeting we have as the board. This is not only for our weekly board meetings, but also during CCA's, General Members Assemblies and Advisory Council meetings. As you see I can't live without my laptop anymore ;)

Another task of the Secretary is to keep track of the member administration. This means you process all new registrations and help new members where necessary. Besides this, I make sure that the website is up to date. I am responsible for having every activity online, uploading pictures of activities and basically everything that needs to be changed. Learning how to manage a website is really interesting and something you can use in your later career as well. It might seem a little hard in the beginning, but it's very easy to learn!

To sum up: as the Secretary you have a lot of different tasks that have to do with the internal and external communication of the association. Internal communication especially means all contact with your members via direct mail, external communication means keeping the website up to date and having contact with other parties via email.

Besides all of your tasks being a board member is also just really fun. You will notice that you develop yourself not only professionally, but also personally. You will learn how to keep an overview of everything, organise activities, and a lot of other things. All of this while you are a part of a great team, with which you will make a lot of memories. In a year without corona you will also meet a lot of new people and go to a lot of parties, and I think that's the thing we as students look forward to most when it's possible again. So, being the Secretary is not only serious business!

If you have any questions about my function, please don't hesitate to contact me! You can always send me a text and I would love to answer all your questions while going for a walk or having a cup of tea!



Treasurer '20-'21 Henry Hornung

As Treasurer you are responsible for all financial matters in the association.

Your time as Treasurer will start off with you drafting your budgets for the year in the financial policy plan, and presenting these at the T-GMA. Afterwards you will be overseeing all transactions to ensure that you stay within your budgets. This means sending out invoices to sponsors and ensuring they are paid on time, paying invoices such as for our web-hosting service. Whenever activities take place that members have to pay for, you will also organise debt collections. This means gathering people’s information, compiling it into a SEPA batch and sending it to our bank. If payments are rejected or fail, it’s up to you follow up with people to ensure everything comes in.

One of the best parts of being Treasurer is that you will be in touch with the different committee treasurers to see how they are doing. You’ll be helping them with their budgets and giving advice where it is needed.

You won’t be on your own when doing these tasks. There is an audit committee which consists of two former treasurers, one external member and the shadow treasurer. This committee will advise you when things get challenging, and help you with your budgets and bi-annual financial reports.

Being the Treasurer requires good organisation, persistence, commitment and flexibility. Things will not always go according to plan so you’ll learn to think of creative solutions to problems as they appear.

Despite the pandemic, doing a board year was one of the best decisions I could have made and has been both enjoyable and helped me develop myself in many ways. As always, feel free to ask me any questions you have about my function, commotie or anything else. I’m always happy to answer them. :)


Commissioner of Internal Affairs '20-'21 Patrick Dahms

While the position Commissioner of Internal Affairs was divided among multiple board members last year, this year I have full responsibility. Your main task as the Commissioner of
Internal Affairs is to have an overview of the progress within all committees. This requires you to be in close contact with all the chairmen of the committees and regularly read the minutes of committee meetings. This is very important to keep up with because you will also need to communicate everything that is going on within committees back to the rest of the board during the weekly board meetings. Occasionally, for anything urgent or something that needs more time for discussion you will join committee meetings as well. In certain situations, you will notice that you also have to be strict with people, but this is for the good. So, don’t be afraid to lead and come to strict conclusions. Besides being in contact with every committee, you are also the main contact person for all members. Overall, this means that you will be in contact with a lot of people and therefore spending a lot of time texting.

Another task of being the Commissioner of Internal Affairs is schedule and guide two chairmen assemblies throughout the year. It is your responsibility to make the agenda, with points, which you would like to discuss with the chairmen. During these meetings you mention important changes, which are relevant to all active members. You also discuss any new potential ideas. The goal of these meetings is to also get an impression of how the chairmen are doing in leading their committees and if there is anything to improve on.

As the Commissioner of Internal Affairs, you are also responsible for the Central Committee Assemblies (CCA), these take place every month on the first Tuesday. You will moderate and
present during the CCA’s to show committees what the Board has been up to in the past month and you will also update them about anything important regarding the association and other things. During the assemblies the committee chairmen will also present what their committee has been up to in the past month. Alongside this, it is also your task to keep track of the Committee Competition score and everything else that comes with this, such as managing the Facebook group of this competition.

Being the Commissioner of internal Affairs, requires you to be flexible. There will be weeks, where there is a lot to do, but there will also be weeks where you have little to do and you can invest your time elsewhere. The busy weeks can be challenging at first but will eventually becoming rewarding, when you are the first to see the progress and accomplishments of “your” committees. The function also demands patience from you, not everything will always go as planned, so, at times you need to stay calm and everything will settle itself with time. On the contrary, don’t be afraid to push people to stimulate progress.

All in all, the function of Commissioner of Internal Affairs is very fulfilling, you will be in contact will a lot of people and as a result get to know a lot of people. The function will definitely get you out of your comfort zone and provide you with some valuable experience for your future life.

Commissioner of External Affairs '20-'21 Kim van Gool

The most important task of the Commissioner of External Affairs is to look for new partnerships with external parties. You will be in contact with companies, other (study) associations and departments of the university. It is your task to reach out to interesting companies that suit Commotie or are beneficial for students in general. The partnerships with companies usually result in us receiving financial support or discounts. By closing new partnerships, you are working on achieving your sponsoring goal, which is set at the beginning of the year. Besides looking for new partnerships, it is also your task to keep in touch with current partners and maintain the relationship.

Being Commissioner of External Affairs is a great function to broaden your network! You will have meetings with people from the working field to discuss possibilities for partnerships. This way you will get to know a lot of people and who knows, maybe you will be in contact with your future employer!

Besides reaching out to companies, you are also in close contact with other associations. If Commotie wants to set up a new collaboration with another association, you will be the one
responsible to get in touch and be the contact person. Every year there will be a few activities that are organized with several other associations, for example the Alphabet Party and Winter Gala. This way you will meet a lot of other students from several associations!

Another responsibility is to find new members for the Club of 25. The members of the Club give Commotie financial support to realise the study-related activities and improve the quality of the activities. At the beginning of the year you will also set a goal of how many new members you want to acquire. These members stay up-to-date about our study-related activities via the Club of 25 newsletter, which is written by you!

But wait, there is more! You will also take care of Commotie’s Book Sale via StudyStore. Every block you need to make sure that all books that are needed for CIS are available on StudyStore. Another exciting task is that every year the Commissioner of External Affairs organizes Career Event together with the StuCee! This is because you are in contact with lots of companies and/or alumni who might be suited to speak during this event.

To conclude: your year as Commissioner of External Affairs will never be boring! You will have different tasks to work on, which keep your days very exciting. You will also have the freedom to come up with new ideas for collaborations and partnerships. What I love most about this function is that you really broaden your network and step out of that comfort zone sometimes to achieve your goals! This is a great step to take to gain some practical experience and develop yourself professionally!

So if you are socially strong, can represent Commotie for external parties and have the drive to come up with new collaborations and ideas, you should definitely apply to become the next Commissioner of External Affairs!



Marloes Bergmans, Study Advisor of CIS

A new academic year, a new board! As the board of a study association, you are not only an organizer of fun activities for the students of Communication and Information Studies, it is so much more. Commotie creates a connection between the degree progam(s) and students. As a study advisor I also regularly meet up with the board members. About the organization of information and introduction and other activities, but also to find out whether there are still issues among the students that I might be able to take action on. Especially in these times of COVID this is of major importance.

During your time as a board member you learn to independently make educated decisions and how to work in a project-based and structured manner. Organizing something from A-Z. You will also work together with a close-knit group of board members for a year. To become a board member you do not have to bring a load of board experience, even students who have not yet done much in this area can certainly apply. It is precisely governing from different backgrounds that makes it fun and informative, you do learn from each other!

A board year means an investment of energy and time. It is of course possible that less of both is left for your study program, but not necessarily. In consultation with me as a study advisor, you can see how you can combine both in the best possible way or how you can create space for your board position. Personally, I think that if you take a little longer to complete your studies because you have been in charge of Commotie for a year, you should not call it a ‘delay’. The experience of leading a mini-organization is so valuable that you will benefit from it in the future anyway.


Tom Koole, Professor CIS

For the lecturers of CIS and for the board of the CIS department, it is really important to have a well-run study association around like Commotie. Commotie makes sure that CIS is not just a program with courses, exams and a diploma at the end. Instead, they give you a social environment in which you can undertake activities with your fellow-students which aren’t necessarily communication related (socials and parties are very important). Instead, these activities can really help to give you a different perspective on your studies, like the trip abroad, the communication congress and the pub lectures. 

For a student, a board year is an enriching experience. You will have regular meetings with other study associations, the student member of the faculty board and the department board. This will give you a lot of understanding of what is happening in and outside of the faculty and the university, also from the perspective of the lecturers. You will organize activities together with other communication associations from all over The Netherlands. In short: you will not only develop board experience, but you will also broaden your perspective and (important for the job market later), you’ll enhance content of your cv.