Higher student satisfaction through, among other things quality improvement in education, intensive collaboration between education and research, and improvement of the regional profile and anchoring. VHL University of Applied Sciences (VHL)’s level of ambition is high. The Executive Board further elaborated its plans during the opening year of the University of Applied Sciences. The new location directors were also introduced.
The University of Applied Sciences is making the switch to location management on 1 September. To this end, Ruth van der Beek and Saskia Heins have been appointed Director of Education and Director of Research respectively for the Velp location. For the Leeuwarden location, positions are filled by Josephine Woltman-Elpers (Director of Education) and Irene van Heerde (Director of Research).
VHL has consciously chosen to give the collaboration between education and research a prominent place in the new organisational structure. Further integration between these two disciplines leads to innovative and up-to-date education and offers students the opportunity to acquire skills in research and - together with lecturer-researchers and professors - to participate in relevant practical assignments in the green-blue domain. Research has shown that there is a lot of demand for this among students.
Student satisfaction is also high on VHL's list of priorities, and the new location management will also tirelessly pursue these priorities. Last academic year, they organised several sessions in which students shared their experiences and tips. Together with input from the meetings pertaining to the study advance funds from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, this will lead to concrete improvement plans next autumn that should contribute to increased student satisfaction. Ruth van der Beek: ‘We want that VHL students eventually leave with a smile and some nostalgia. A smile because they are ready to venture into the wider world, and nostalgia for the great time they had here. That's what we're going to put all our effort into as an organisation.’
The move to location management also offers opportunities to strengthen bonds in the region and to further intensify regional cooperation in education and research. For example, more intensive contact will be made with regional upstream schools, including through-flow programmes, as well as dropout and success rate analyses. Research is also frequently linked to regional issues. A broad representation in external and/or regional networks generates more relevant research assignments for students, and thus contributes to the improvement of our quality of education.