I was introduced to BAISmag back in September 2021 during the Uni introduction days at the Schouwburgstraat building, exactly ten days after my arrival in the Netherlands.
During this period, I was overwhelmed by excitement and optimism about starting my new life here and I was really looking forward to the countless opportunities that I could have. After all, in about a week’s time I would have started studying what I loved, in a city as beautiful as The Hague, and surrounded by lovely and friendly people, some of whom I had already been in contact with before even coming to the Netherlands. It shouldn’t really come off as a surprise that while I was riding this wave of optimism, as soon as the opportunity to join one of BASIS’ committees presented itself to me, I took it without any hesitation.
Little would I have known then where this experience would have brought me. Being the Head of Correspondence, having to research all kinds of topics, events etc. and writing articles (as well as the newsflash) about them, broadened my mind to such an extent that paradoxically, it made me realise how little I actually knew about the world. I must admit, the road was a bit bumpy at times. I found myself in situations where it was difficult to find content to cover, or because most sources around a topic were only in Dutch, or because the week was relatively uneventful. But with the right amount of self-discipline, focus, and, most importantly, help from the rest of the BAISmag team, I managed to keep it up.
So far though, what surprised me the most about this experience was the amount of positive feedback I received from my fellow students. There were times where people would DM on instagram, thanking me for having covered a topic which they didn’t know much about, or because they were glad I reported on a lesser-known event in their country(ies) of origin.
Other times I had friends and acquaintances stopping me at Wijnhaven to tell me how they found my articles informative and how much they enjoyed it. Even on the works I felt like I didn’t do as well as I could have, the feedback was always positive and encouraging. One common recurring comment I received on my articles and newsflash was the objective tone which they were written in, something which I’m really glad readers noticed since it was my goal from the get-go to make my publications as transparent, reliable, and objective as possible.
To wrap it up, I would say that this experience has been a net positive for me. I learned a lot about Dutch as well as worldwide matters through my research, both which I think were extremely relevant to my studies. I experienced how it actually feels to work in a team and it provided me with really valuable experiences, skills, and most importantly memories that I can look back on with great joy.
Find us on Instagram @basis.baismag
Images from Unsplash