Alumniverhaal

Fennie van Straalen - Assistant Professor

When studying Garden and Landscape Architecture at Van Hall Larenstein, Fennie specialised in Landscape Architecture. Afterwards, she followed the Spatial Planning Master programme. After her graduation, she continued her academic career by pursuing a PhD, on “Private Property in Public Processes.” She is currently Assistant Professor at Utrecht University.

I learned a lot from coaching groups as well as individual students working on their bachelor and master theses.

Why did you decide to continue studying after your Bachelor of Applied Sciences?

"I became more interested in the depth, content and background of design processes. I could stimulate this interest at Wageningen University & Research."

During your PhD you also spent time teaching. What was that like?

"I learned a lot from coaching groups as well as individual students working on their bachelor and master theses. Giving lectures and presenting my work at international conferences also added to my teaching skills and experience."

What do you do as an Assistant Professor?

"I teach for half her time, the other half is spent on research. I teach subjects like ‘Planning for Sustainable Cities' in the master and ‘Planning Methods’ in the bachelor. I also supervise bachelor and master theses. Bachelor and master students are very different, but it is fun working towards a goal with both groups. Right now, one of my bachelor students is working on a scientific publication about his thesis, which is really cool."

Is it hard for you to combine your job with being a mother?

"Combining my work with being a mum is a pretty tough task. But the job is certainly worth the hard work. I really love the freedom you have as a researcher. You can spend your time exactly the way you want to."

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