This month in our blog we are hosting WEXHE Project Director Prof. Robert Wagenaar with his insider views and reflections on the WBL status and developments at the University of Groningen. We wish you a pleasant reading!
When preparing the application for the WEXHE project I was of course aware that its topic was very current. However, I did not realize how hot it was! This became clear to me during the first six months of the project period when the documents and guidelines to get the project going were prepared. And in particular when having the first interviews! These made clear that we are dealing with a wide range of different levels of expertise and experience. Also in my own country and university. I knew that the University of Groningen is at the forefront in our country regarding the development of policies for work based learning. What is surprising that within the university the Faculty of Arts is leading. It operates a unit Communication, Career and Society building on 30 years of experience.
For the university as a whole a special service point – Career Services – (http://www.rug.nl/careerservices/) has been established. It gives access to a student portal which is tailored to each faculty (http://student.portal.rug.nl/infonet/studenten/). The websites offer a placement service, Bachelor’s and Master’s Roadmaps, information about tailored workshops, etc. In other words, a well thought through package of services! A more recent initiative is the University of Groningen Centre of Entrepreneurship (UGCE), which valorizes university knowledge for energy, health, renewal of industry, and sustainability and also offers a Minor Innovation & Entrepreneurship.
I am convinced, there will be many more examples of good practices in the Netherlands and beyond, of which we do not know the detail. It will offer a broad spectrum which we can build upon in our WEXHE project. I am looking forward to learn more about this and about experiences of the other WEXHE partners!