Thom Tolboom

Testimonial Thom Tolboom
You gain a good understanding of complex societal processes in the past as well as the present.
Thom Tolboom
Historical Studies (research)
Study start date
Study end date
Previous education
History at Radboud University

Thom is studying Historical Studies, a Research Master's specialisation of Historical, Literary and Cultural Studies.

What do you like about the Research programme and why?

I like the fact that this Research Master's programme gives me a lot of freedom to explore my own interests and research the topics I want to know more about, while still challenging me with rather complex theoretical and methodological courses to bring my scholarly thinking and practice to a higher level.

What do you think about the atmosphere in class?

Because the group of students is rather small, you know each other even after a few weeks, which makes social contact easy and fun. Teachers seem more approachable than during my Bachelor's; the seminars feel more like a cooperative effort between students and teacher, rather than a top-down information transfer.

What do you find most challenging in your Master’s?

I guess one of the biggest challenges is shaping your own programme. You have to think ahead a lot to select courses which would fit your own interests and learning curve and which topic you would like to dedicate your thesis on. Discussing these things with your tutor can be very helpful.

Are you currently doing an internship?

I am currently in Leicester (England) for an internship on the image of Spain and Portugal in 18th- and early 19th-century travel writing.

Why do you think is it important that there are people out there with this degree?

I think the high level of academic functioning you develop during this Master's is not only helpful when pursuing a career in academia but also in a lot of other positions (policy making, cultural sector, media etc.), as you gain a good understanding of complex societal processes in the past as well as the present.

What are your plans once you've received your Master's degree?

I myself am still not sure on my plans after graduation. I am leaning towards applying for a PhD, but with my broad interests I would also fancy a position in policy making or the cultural sector.