Almost all my working life, I have been associated with Radboud University, and also as a student. I graduated in Clinical Psychology, did my PhD in Developmental Psychology, and after my PhD in 1998, I went to work in Orthopedagogy as a U(H)D. In 2013, I left Radboud because I felt I was having too little social impact with my research. I then served until 2021 as director of a research agency engaged in practice-based research. I then became an associate professor at Radboud and Tilburg University with a mission: I wanted to 'academise' clinical practice, that is, give clinical practice a more scientifically grounded basis through research (mostly external PhD projects). In 2021, as a full-time Professor and Programme Director, I returned to Radboud's Department of Orthopedagogy, and again with a mission: where I first wanted to 'academise' practice, I now wanted to 'practice' academia. I felt that while practice was moving towards science, science was only very timidly moving towards practice.
Last week, I experienced a new turn in my career at Radboud University: on 25th October, I started as interim dean at the Faculty of Social Sciences, and I already have the honour of writing a column. This speed fits the process as it has been going on over the past few days, and it has struck me in such a way that I want to share it as an ode to our university.
On Thursday, 19th October, the faculty was faced with the fact that the Dean had to temporarily resign due to long-covid. What followed was the ultimate example of a flexible and resilient organisation: within three days, talks were held with the Executive Board, the Faculty Joint Assembly (FGV) was consulted, there was coordination with the faculty, and the interim deanship was confirmed. At the same time, in the department I am Programme Director of (Pedagogical Sciences and Educational Sciences), the directorate was reshaped to accommodate my absence there. To me, all of this testifies to a commitment, togetherness, and resilience that characterises our university, words that are proving to be more than empty phrases. And once again, I notice how proud and grateful I am to work for Radboud University.
Interim dean - Faculty of Social Sciences