The Student Council GeoRes introduces itself - Interview with Antonia and Florian

  Group picture Student Council members Copyright: © Fachschaft GeoRes

back row (l.-r.) - Sepp, Chris, Myles, Frederik, Richard, Janina
front row - Antonia, Florian ; not on the picture: Alica


Since July, Florian and Antonia are the two new student representatives of the GeoRes student council. Florian is in his sixth semester of Bachelor of Applied Geosciences. Antonia is in her second semester of Georesource Management. In the interview, they talk about their best experiences during their studies, about geocaching and about planning the Barbara celebration.

Hello Antonia and Florian! What three words would you use to describe your degree programme?

Versatile - because of the natural sciences, business administration and legal subjects,
Future-oriented - because professions related to the geosciences are becoming more and more relevant.
...and practical - because of the excursions and the chemistry internship in the first semester.

Scientific - that's kind of the first thing that comes to mind,
Innovative - if you consider that great scientific progress has only been made in geology in the last few years, for example through plate theory,
...and interdisciplinary - because as a geoscientist you need a broader scientific knowledge.

What event or moment from your studies so far will you remember most fondly in 30 years' time?
F: Before my current studies, I studied mathematics. After I changed to Earth Sciences and got my first exam grade, I was really happy with the grade. I was so happy that my parents wondered what was wrong with me.
Or the moment when it "clicks" while you're studying. When you realise that you haven't just learned things by heart, but that you understand them and can possibly use them later. I would describe this moment as a "learning kick". Without this moment, I probably wouldn't study any more.
A: On the one hand, the "Freshers' Week", because I was positively surprised at how much was organised by the student council despite the online format. On the other hand, the few events that were offered in presence, such as the chemistry practical in the first semester and the excursion days. Those were the only opportunities to get to know my fellow students.

Why did you choose your degree programme?
F: In my previous degree, you had to choose an application subject. First it was programming and later that was replaced by earth science and geography. When I switched from programming to the geo-subjects, I suddenly enjoyed the lectures. The geography students and student representatives I met in the lectures were immediately likeable. So on the one hand it was the human aspect and on the other hand the subject aspect that brought me to the geosciences.
A: After my A-levels, I was pretty clueless about what to study. I enjoyed the natural science subjects the most at school, but especially geography. Then I researched which geography degree programmes were offered in Aachen and visited the study information day at RWTH Aachen University. In the end, the geo-resource management degree programme was the best fit for my interests. After two semesters, I am very satisfied with my choice of study and find the subjects interesting and varied. Another advantage is that the interaction with each other is more personal and familiar due to the small number of students.

Many first-year students hear the word "Fachschaft" for the first time. If you had to answer the question in just one sentence: What is the student council for?
F+A: The student council represents the interests of the students of the Applied Geosciences and Georesource Management degree programmes.

What events would you normally plan if there were no restrictions due to the Corona pandemic?
F: At the beginning of each semester there is a "High 5" party, planned with all the student councils of Faculty 5. The Saturday after Barbara Day on 4 December is usually followed by the Barbara Party, co-organised by the third-year students. This takes place in clubs - but possibly in the mining building for the next few years. After GeoTag, which is organised by our subject group, the summer party takes place in the car park of the mining building. Quiz evenings are also offered at irregular intervals. We also organise the freshers' week and the freshers' weekend at the Rursee for all first-year students.

Due to the Corona pandemic, operations in the mining building, where the student council room and many study rooms are located, have been completely shut down. This has made contact with the students much more difficult. How do you reach students despite online teaching?

A: Of course, contact with the students is much more difficult during Corona. During the first two Corona semesters, we had more participants at the general assemblies than in attendance. Since this semester, we have noticed that there are significantly fewer students at the plenary sessions. The students don't want to attend online events any more because they sit in front of the computer all day anyway.
F: We are trying to organise a geocaching tournament in the near future to offer an alternative to the online events. Otherwise, we reach out to students via Instagram, Facebook and by mail. We are also planning to create a Whatsapp group. We are also talking about the app Telegram, but not everyone has Telegram.

What actions do you have planned in the near future?
F: From the beginning of October, students will have the opportunity to find out coordinates or place names on the student council website with the help of various puzzles. The coordinates can be used to find geocaches. These are boxes the size of a lunch box that can be clearly assigned to the student council. These boxes contain a code that you can enter on the student council website to register the geocache for yourself. To prevent the code from simply being passed on, you still have to enter your name in a list in the box. We organise the geocaching together with the geography department. The geocaches will be distributed in Aachen and the surrounding area and will be accessible by bus or train. For example, there will also be a geocache in the Siebengebirge.
A: In this way, we want to encourage students to get together in pairs or threes, to move around and get out of the study.
F: After a certain number of geocaches, participants will receive small prizes. In addition, all participants who have reached a certain percentage of geocaches receive a certificate.

One of the highlights for students, lecturers and staff is without question the Barbara celebration, which usually takes place in December in a club in Aachen. Last year, the Barbara celebration unfortunately had to be cancelled due to the Corona pandemic. Will the Barbara celebration take place this year?
A: This year we will probably organise the Barbara celebration together with the Fachgruppe 5/1. The plan is that the Barbara celebration will take place in the entrance hall of the mining building. At the moment it is rather unlikely that the room will meet the Corona hygiene regulations. If it is possible, we will do everything we can to organise a small celebration.

At the moment you are nine elected student council members. You both have a special role among them: that of student council chairperson. What are your duties and responsibilities in this position?
F: You have to know the student council members well and be able to assess them in order to be able to delegate tasks. We also have to maintain good contact with the professors.
A: We have to be the people who keep an eye on everything and at the same time represent the student council to the outside world, for example, when we present the student council's teaching award.

How can you be contacted?
A: Basically, we can be reached via email or via our Instagram account. For anyone who wants to get to know the student council, I can only recommend coming to our student council meetings. We are happy about every new face that drops by!
F: There is also information about the student council meetings and upcoming activities on the student council website. We also send all relevant information to students by email.

Thank you for your time and all the best for the next semester!


Profile of Antonia

Copyright: © Fachschaft GeoRes

Name: Antonia Dix

Course of study: B.Sc. Georessources Management

Favourite mineral: Rhodochrosite

Favourite rock: Larvikite


Profile of Florian

Copyright: © Fachschaft GeoRes

Name: Florian Thiex

Course of studies: B.Sc. Applied Geosciences

Favourite mineral: Tsavorite

Favourite rock: Rapakivi granite