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Old Committees: A Dive in the Archives

Committees have always been a significant workforce of a study association. Teams of students come together to contribute to their association. They could contribute in any form they are motivated for. Like, taking recent examples, organizing fun bonding activities such as drinks or ski trips, forming a platform to discuss study matters or crafting digital systems that are to be used by association members. Currently Scintilla has around 30 active committees which show their faces regularly around the association. But over time many committees have come and gone, some older committees aren’t talked about anymore and can only be found in history. We may be familiar with the committees that are active to this day, but we don’t really talk about the older ones that aren’t active anymore. In this article I would like to take you with me as I take a deep dive in Scintilla’s archives to learn more about committees that used to be active years ago.

The first step I took in looking up old committees is by tracking them by the root: the Committee Establishment Decree (CED). The CED is a document stating the purposes of a committee and the rules its members have to follow, such as certain prerequisites a committee has to fulfill or specific rules that apply to the committee that enforce its purpose. Each committee has a CED, signed by two board members and two committee members, usually the chair and treasurer. All CED’s are either archived on Scintilla’s digital storage or in a big binder which can be found in the board room.

So I decided to face the CED binder and embraced the inner librarian that I didn’t know I had inside of me. While scanning through CED’s like no tomorrow, I also learned a few fun facts about currently active commitees. For example, did you know that the STORES Administrator automatically becomes the treasurer of the SUN committee? This is because the SUN newspaper, which you can find at every Scintilla Vrimibo, contains a STORES advert in every edition!

This trivia is nice and all, but this isn’t the purpose of my great quest. I put my nose just a little bit deeper in the CED binder, around the year 2000 to be exact, and eventually I found a couple of unique committees that I have never heard about myself. I decided to continue my research by diving into our digital storage and SMART3, our member and committee database (and much more), to learn more about the doings of these committees. In the end I formulated my research on three committees that I found particularly interesting:

SLOK – Scintilla’s Lunch- en OntbijtKommissie

The first committee I found was quite a simple one with a very simple task: providing breakfast and/or lunch in the Scintilla Room. Honestly this is quite a cool student initiative if I’m being honest! As a board member I unfortunately do have experience with a rather poor diet due to remaining in the SK for the majority of the day, I wouldn’t mind if members would supply me with a healthy breakfast every now and then…

Digitally I couldn’t find much information about this committee, but I can imagine that this isn’t really necessary for a committee with such a straightforward purpose. Just a bunch of members that bring a ton of breakfast or lunch every now and then, that’s how simple and wonderful committee work can be!

An interesting find in the CED of SLOK is that, similarly to the SUN with the STORES, the treasurer of SCALA is automatically treasurer of the SLOK. This leads me to believe that the SLOK was initially an idea that arose from a couple of SCALA members and eventually evolved into a committee that branched out of SCALA.

Unfortunately the SLOK lived quite a short life for a Scintilla committee. Its CED was signed in July 2006 while its last members left the committee in December 2008. It seems that after two years people had to get their own breakfast or lunch in the SK… But if you are still willing to supply breakfast or lunch in the SK, I’m open for it!

SCoPE – Scintilla’s Commissie voor Promotie van Elektrotechniek

A good meal is quite nice and all, but it does not improve on any of the four main goals of Scintilla. This is where the SCoPE comes in! Translating to Scintilla’s Committee for Promotion of Electrical Engineering, the SCoPE aims to further Electrical Engineering by showcasing the subject to high school students. To directly quote a line from the CED of SCoPE, the goal of SCoPE is:

“To conceive activities, projects and other affairs to promote the study Electrical Engineering at the University of Twente.”

The SCoPE fulfilled this purpose in order to show highschoolers how fun Electrical Engineering is and hopefully increase the influx of EE students at the university. The SCoPE also worked closely with the introduction programme of the study Electrical Engineering at the university, it stood close to the Scintilla members (who happen to be experienced EE students) and received suggestions and feedback on what to add or change to the introduction to EE. The SCoPE aims to give a fresh and new input to the organization of the introduction programme in order to improve the image of Electrical Engineering.

The SCoPE mainly organized little workshops and guest lectures to explain basic concepts of Electrical Engineering, such as the working of a capacitor or transistor. An example of a practical that the SCoPE organized was an engineering contest. In this contest teams attempt to create a projectile that can launch as high as possible using the energy stored in a single AA battery. The height of the projectile was measured by tracking a LED on the projectile using an angle measurement.

Eventually, the SCoPE also met its fate, this happened in the year 2012. I believe this could be due to the uprising of the Pre-U, back in 2012 known as Twente Academy, which had the purpose of organizing educative workshops and more. Around 2012 the Twente Academy expanded its horizon by focusing more on educating high school students. I think that during this period the Twente Academy has taken over the responsibility of study associations to promote their subjects, and thus the SCoPE slowly lost its purpose.

Tombe – Tombe-commissie

Before I go into describing what the Tombe-commissie is I will first provide a small history lesson. Before Scintilla settled on the lovely balcony in the Zilverling (alongside Inter-Actief and Abacus), the Scintilla Room used to be stationed in a building named the Hogekamp. Back in the day it used to house many offices, a bunch of lecture halls and an electronics lab, enough for the study Electrical Engineering to be stationed mainly in this building. Fittingly the Scintilla Room was also located in this building, right in the basement alongside the association room of our old friends: s.c.v.m.d.d.v.s.h.g. Arago. Among these rooms there was also a drinking room that was used by both Scintilla and Arago, this room was named “De Tombe”, aka The Tomb.

You may see a few parallels between the old and new location of Scintilla: a floor shared with other associations and a common drinking room, because the same can be said with our current balcony and the lovely Abscint/MBasement underneath. The parallel is not complete without the management of the drinking rooms, which is currently done by Stichting Borrelbeheer Zilverling (SBZ), and this is where the Tombe comes in to maintain the parallel: the Tombe-committee is the management organ of the Tombe, consisting of members of both Scintilla and Arago, who share the drinking room “De Tombe”.

As management organ of De Tombe, the committee was responsible for several tasks that made activities in the drinking room possible:

  • Management of the logistics and inventory of De Tombe
  • Financial administration
  • Management of stock
  • Granting permission for activities held in De Tombe

A crucial aspect of this committee is that De Tombe is shared with a second study association, this is why the Tombecommissie consists of an equal blend of Scintilla and Arago members (or at least a blend as equal as possible). One of the main rules of the Tombecommissie is to keep matters equal and fair between Scintilla and Arago, both financially as with usage of De Tombe.

But obviously, the Tombecommissie met its fate when Scintilla moved to the Zilverling. We had to say goodbye to the Hogekamp and the Tombe and instead found our place in the Abscint and MBasement with new neighbors, soon enough SBZ took over the role that the Tombecommissie had in our original drinking room. But not all is lost from the Tombe, sometimes the old bar from the Tombe (the Tombetap) appears on unique occasions, such as the yearly introduction camp.