Alumnus of ABG: "I knew I wanted to come to WUR"
Margreet Heida's thesis research at Animal Breeding and Genomics (ABG) focused on determining the feed efficiency for dairy cows.
Margreet explains: “I knew I wanted to come to Wageningen University & Research (WUR) even before I knew which bachelor I wanted to do. I’d visited other universities as well, just to make sure I was making the right choice, but there wasn’t a single one that appealed to me in the way WUR did. Also, WUR has such a beautiful campus! All the other universities I visited just looked like a bunch of bricks; not appealing at all, haha!”
“I eventually chose to study Animal Sciences," She continues. "I grew up at a dairy farm, so the idea that I wanted to do ‘something with cows’ didn’t come entirely out of the blue. After I finished my bachelor, I immediately went on to do my master, and I also did an internship with Wageningen Livestock Research (WLR).”
Thesis at ABG
Margreet's thesis research at ABG focused on – surprise, surprise – dairy cattle! Or, more specifically, determining the feed efficiency for dairy cows: “Feed efficiency was a ‘hot topic’ in poultry- and pig farming, but there hadn’t been a lot of research about feed efficiency for dairy cows. The most important thing seemed to be that the cows gave as much milk as possible, and the rest was basically a side-issue. But feed efficiency is essential in the dairy production chain; by optimizing the feed formulation farmers can save money, we can reduce the environmental impact of feed production, and even improve the health of the cows. I’m glad that there’s a lot more attention for feed efficiency research nowadays.”
Life after university
Margreet tells: “After my master I registered at several different recruitment agencies. I also kept a close eye on the vacancy section on the website of the student organization 'The Veetelers'. That would also be the advice I would give to anyone who’s recently finished their education and is looking for a job. I eventually ended up at Diamond Genetics via Aeres Agree, one of the recruitment agencies. I’ve been employed with Diamond Genetics for a year now, and I really enjoy working here; my job is very diverse and the team is awesome!"
“What I really like is that, because of my prior education and experience, I can talk very easily to people from all the different divisions in the company. I can advise customers or help our marketing team by explaining more about the technical processes involved with our products and services. I think that’s a real bonus about having had such a thorough education.”