The Goebenstift is characterized by the concept of student self-administration. The basis for the self-administration is the house general assemblies (Konvent), in which the entire house population meets twice per semester. Here we decide on the basics of our living together and hold elections for various duties.
Most residents hold an active honorary position. These offices are usually elected once a semester at the general assembly. They cover certain areas such as finances, janitorial activities or public relations. This is not only important for self-administration, but also offers the opportunity for personal development.
Even though life in the house is strongly influenced by the offices, the commitment of the entire house community is indispensable. The house has to be kept in good shape. Major house cleaning and gardening are therefore done twice a semester by the entire community. These regular devotions as well as our house parties are organized by the residents themselves and are an integral part of community life in the house. There are no limits to personal initiative – time and again, people in the house come together to form a wide variety of working groups. Thus, for more than 40 years, the Goebenstift has been characterized above all by the personal commitment of those who live and study there.
Tasks in the house
Here are some of the areas in which you can get involved at the Goebenstift (as of 2021):
Resident council “Seniorat“
The “Seniorat” consists of three people and is responsible for making decisions regarding the house and the residents between the general assembly. As the elected head of the students’ house, it decides on all questions concerning the Goebenstift in cooperation with the study inspector. It represents the residents vis-à-vis the association, keeps contact with new residents and keeps track of the offices and their tasks. Furthermore, it organizes the big events in the house and keeps an eye on our house treasury.
Vacation rental “Ferienvermietung“
If students are not in the house for some time, e.g., during the semester break, their rooms can be rented out to interested parties for interim rent at their request. The vacation rental takes care of our guests and organizes a smooth running of their stay.
Also, the area of finances is, in consultation with the association, to a large extent self-administered. It includes, among other things, the accounting and approval of in-house investments and the expenses of the offices. In addition, the overview of the rental income is kept. Furthermore, the audit of the individual cash registers of certain offices falls under the area of finance.
House and workshop
Especially in an old building like the Goebenstift, things break. As far as possible, we maintain our house ourselves and repair or renovate when necessary. We have our own workshop for this purpose. However, if major repairs are needed that we cannot do ourselves, we organize craftsmen. In addition, room handovers and the overview of the furniture cellar fall into this area.
Safety first – also in our house. In the context of fire protection, important tasks have to be fulfilled, such as checking first aid kits, smoke detectors and fire extinguishers, as well as keeping escape routes clear. In addition, two fire drills are conducted during the semester.
Keeping our building clean is a task in itself. The washing machines have to work, cleaning utensils and detergents have to be replenished, and the towels in the common rooms have to be changed regularly. In addition, there is the organization of the cleaning lists and checking the adherence to the lists. In addition, a major cleaning is organized twice a semester.
Our garden is an important part of the house and needs care. Whether it’s sowing seeds in the spring, watering in the summer, raking leaves in the fall, or tidying up the garden together with the residents on garden day – there is always something to do in the garden.
Library and post system
Our house has a lot of reading material to organize. For one, new books are bought and cataloged to keep the stock of our library up to date. And secondly, the mail and magazine subscriptions are managed.
Devotions & Church Services
The Cardinals coordinate the conduct of regularly scheduled devotions and plan the worship services at the beginning and end of each semester. They collect the semester collection and give it to charity. Meetings for exchange with the ESG (“Evangelische Studierendengemeinde Bonn”) are also organized from time to time.
This area of responsibility includes the stocking of the house liquor bar and the implementation of the weekly bar evening. In addition, the wine cellar is available for smaller celebrations in the house.
Internet and public relations
In this area, the house community is regularly informed about everything that happens in the house. In addition, the servers and the WLAN network in the house must be maintained and our alumni and church communities need to be kept in the loop e.g. by sending donation letters. Once a year our house magazine (the “Hausblick”) is published and every now and then smaller events are organized to collect donations. Finally, we take care of the maintenance of this website.
The convent (i.e. in this case the house inhabitants) gives itself Statutes (“Satzung”), similar to an association statute, in which the self-administration is regulated. There, among other things, all offices and responsibilities are listed. The Rules of Procedure (“Geschäftsordnung”) expand the Statutes to include the procedures of the convention meetings.