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Student Support reflects on 2023: student life is the most important, meaningful time of your life

A Student Living Room, free period products and a wide variety of events. Over the past year, the Student Support Team at Leiden Law School has taken measures to turn the faculty into a safe, accessible social space for all students. They’ve been reflecting on the past year.

People often say that student life is the best time of your life. And that’s probably nothing new to many students in Leiden. There’s often a focus on the positive aspects of student life, such as making new friends and enjoying more freedom. Unfortunately, the difficult decisions, stressful times and pressure to succeed often receive little exposure, and yet they’re also a significant part of student life and can have quite an impact on students’ mental well-being.

The Student Support Team comprises seven enthusiastic students who are supervised by D&I Coordinator and Wellbeing Officer Susanne Deen. We aim to create a learning environment in which students feel connected with others and where successes, challenges, difficult decisions and doubts can be shared in equal measure. That should help make your student life the most important, meaningful time of your life!

In order to achieve this, we’ve worked hard over the past year to realise a number of projects, workshops and events aimed at improving student well-being, diversity and inclusion within the faculty. We can reflect on some great events, such as the D&I Career Event, an inspirational lecture on identity, several Language Café sessions, a film evening and a board game night.

And don’t forget that the Student Living Room has been a popular spot for coffee breaks, a good chat, games, reading and even just a little peace and quiet since it opened. There’s also a Peer Support Student on hand every single day to help with life’s big and small questions or simply to listen.

In the KOG building, lots of changes have been made to expand facilities that benefit both mental and physical well-being. Since September 2023, free period products have been offered in all women's and unisex toilets in the KOG building and the Leiden Observatory. A new quiet room and nursing mothers’ room have been set up and more meeting rooms and study spaces have been created.

We’re keen to provide all students at our faculty with a solid foundation in terms of student well-being, diversity and inclusion – a faculty where all students feel welcome and have the space to develop. Our ultimate goal is to create a shared learning environment in which all students can be themselves and support each other during tough times.

For the Student Support Team – which is based in the Student Living Room – 2023 was a fantastic, successful year. We can proudly reflect on the projects we have realised, as well as our successes and learning opportunities. Looking ahead to 2024 (which is just around the corner!), we have a series of new events lined up, all taking place in the Student Living Room. If you have a great idea for an event, drop us a line at studentsupport@law.leidenuniv.nl.

We wish you a wonderful festive season and a healthy and happy New Year!

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