Students happy that Forum is open again
They don’t want beer, they want to study
One of the students making use of them is Merve Ayanoglu (30), who’s working on her master thesis for her master in youth 0-21, society and policy. For her it’s the Forum, rather than the pub, that makes her happy.
‘A lot of my friends are international students and they all went home. I missed being surrounded by people. The Forum is a lively place, which I find motivating.’
The Forum might be lively, but in an effort to curtail the spread of the coronavirus, it can’t get too crowded. Before you’re allowed in, you have to answer a few questions, like whether you have any cold- or flu-like symptoms. If you’ve answered every question in the negative and disinfected your hands, you can go in.
Inside the Forum, people have to stay a safe distance away from each other; they need to leave at least four steps between them on the escalator. Students are allowed to sit down at every other table. Visitors who don’t follow the rules will be addressed. ‘Would you please move one seat over? You can only sit at the tables with a green dot’, an employee says to a student who’s at the wrong table.
The rules take some getting used to, but the reopening is perfect timing for some students. Medical student Mrwan Almuteiri (22) has an exam in three days.
‘At home, I just can’t get motivated’, he says. ‘I’m so happy the Forum is open again. It’s quiet and calm here; the atmosphere is unique.’
Mathematics student Laura Oldenburger (19) is making good use of the reopened study facilities. ‘To be honest, I kind of pretended I was on holiday the past few weeks.’ She lives with four roommates, and while that makes for a fun house to live in, it’s not a great place to study.
She has a much easier time focusing at the Forum. She hopes it will stay quiet for now. ‘Otherwise I’d have to wait in line in the morning, just like at the UB. That would suck.’