What knowledge and skills did you learn during your Master’s that are really useful to you now?
I think one of the main skills that I have learned during my Master's is the ability to ask critical questions. Instead of taking things at face value, my Master's taught me to approach issues with an open mind and a critical eye. This skill was particularly crucial for me as someone who was willing to pursue an academic career. In a sense, doing a Research Master's was a sneak peek of what an academic life could look like. It helped me to evaluate my career choices and options better.
What did you find most challenging in your Master’s?
In my experience, the structure of the programme depended a lot on how the students wanted to plan their study years. There was a lot of flexibility in the choice of courses, thesis topics, and internship institutions. While this structure provided a great opportunity for personal and professional development, it also had its downsides. I often felt a bit overwhelmed when planning my schedule.
Could you say a little about the job you do now?
I am a PhD candidate and a lecturer at Radboud University. Most of my time is dedicated to my research or preparing my lectures. My PhD project focuses on the plastic crisis in contemporary art. Living in an age of environmental crisis, I find the project particularly relevant. I take great joy in being able to ask the questions I find important and design my own research.
Do you have any tips/suggestions for prospective students?
I think they should look into their options carefully before choosing their programme. While doing a Research Master's is a very rewarding experience, it is also quite demanding. My advice is to think about their career opportunities and what they may want to do with their degree afterward.