“My university is dedicated to giving alumni the best possible start of their career”
Internationalisation, deregulation, sustainability; on intranet employees share which ‘SP-themes’ are important to them and why. Today: Katherine Versteegen, Career Officer at the Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance.
Most important themes: Interdisciplinary Collaboration and Preparing students for the labour market.
Why these themes?
“In my opinion, these themes are connected: the current labour market (and that of the future!) requires professionals who have knowledge of multiple disciplines and can work substantively well with others in projects that go beyond their expertise. For occupations such as lawyer, director, consultant and so forth, this is an absolute must. The Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance unites jurisprudence, economics and governance, which means it has all the possibilities to prepare such versatile professionals. I know other faculties are working on interdisciplinary collaboration as well.
I think we can set the bar a little higher for teaching programmes – for example by providing more room for optional courses and more Minors in the curriculum. Ask questions in such a way that students have to approach them from different angles.
‘Where do I want to make a difference and what do I need for that?’
Educational institutions don’t just provide knowledge; they mould people as well. You become an adult during your degree programme: you learn to function in society and contribute to it. You will need knowledge for that, of course, but skills and mentality are very important for that as well. Just like a realistic image of the field of expertise, by the way. What are the current problems and challenges? Where do I want to make a difference and what do I need for that? That is why preparing students properly for their lives as professionals and to successfully apply what they have learned is part of the core tasks of every educational institute.”
‘Letting our graduates stand out in the eyes of employers’
Does it recieve enough attention in the Strategic Plan?
“Both themes get a lot of attention in the SP and I’m very glad about that. It also makes me happy that the themes are often mentioned together, such as in the part ‘Education for a better future’. I see this combination as a great opportunity to make UU programmes and our graduates stand out to employers.
The fact that Utrecht University places high value on both interdisciplinary collaboration and preparation for the labour market, shows the ambition and strong dedication of my university to give alumni the best possible start of their careers. I find that very inspiring!”