An extra year of performance grant
A deep sigh. Student Maria: “Just a moment, I have been looking forward to this appointment but don't know where to begin...
“I’ve been studying for so long, sometimes it goes, sometimes it doesn’t go. I suffer from traumas and working on them takes so much energy. I also took a break for a while. Then it was going well but now I took a long trip this summer and it just seems like everything is coming up again. I have signed up for therapy again because I notice that I am not doing it anymore. But I have study delay and my student loan from Duo is running. Suddenly, I don't have OV rights anymore. I'm not sure if there's anything left to sort out. My student advisor, whom I always keep informed, suggested I consult with a student counselor, because I would really like to finish my bachelor’s degree.”
A lot of feelings can arise when you are delayed in your studies, and Maria certainly found it difficult to come and talk about this. This is probably also because she was already not feeling well. Then it’s hard to make an appointment and set aside time to sort things out for yourself.
Maria tells me that she feels she is failing, some of her friends have already graduated. She also loses contact with her fellow students because she doesn't pull it off to go out much. She feels a little older than the rest and she worries about her student debt. These thoughts don’t make studying any easier. She wants to hit it hard and finish as soon as possible. I can well imagine how frustrating that is and we discuss and explore her situation over the past few years. I help her put everything in order. That gives her insight. And it gives her an overview. We look back on the past few years together and I hear why she’s been out for a while.
I point out to her right to apply for an extra year of performance grant
The good news is that I can point out to her right to apply for an extra year of performance scholarship. This is eligible for Dutch and European students who are entitled to a performance grant from Duo. I explain what the conditions are and that I can support her request to Duo. She didn't know that, and it really relieved her. It gives perspective. Then we discuss some scenarios for the future. We get to work on her request, and she leaves the conversation relieved, we're both glad she made that appointment after all.