‘At first I was focused on the goal, but now I’m focused on the entire journey towards the goal.’

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Debora van Tricht is a Mechanical Engineering alumnus who currently works at Cost Engineering Consultancy for clients such as Heineken and Shell. After this summer she will start her Master in Supply Chain Management at the RUG.

'I actually wanted to become a pilot in the military, but then I learnt about G-forces and thought that this was very interesting. That’s when I thought that I’d rather work on airplanes than being in one. After some looking around, I eventually went to an orientation at the Hanzehogeschool and thought this was interesting.'

'I chose Mechanical Engineer because I wanted to graduate as fast as possible and start working. So when I found out there was not just a four-year program but also a three-year programme, I chose the three-year programme.'

'I really liked that the classrooms were small. If you needed extra help, you could just put your hand in the air and they would come to you. My classmates were also very nice. There was a lot of cultural exchange and your English got a lot better, because the class was filled with a lot of international students.'

'I did my graduation thesis at Shell. It was about the superstructure of a platform, which is the complete structure of a platform above water, and was mainly about how you can ensure structural integrity with the least amount of maintenance.'

'We also had a lot of projects with real clients. You learn a lot from that. For example, we did a project in the first year where we had to build a self-sustaining house in Hyvinkää. I also did a project at the Hanze Racing Division where I worked on building an electrical race car.'

'What I also learned was to quit something for the first time ever. I didn’t like my minor, so I eventually quit it and started on my graduation thesis instead. It was a difficult decision to quit something because at first I was focused on the goal, but now I’m focused on the entire journey towards the goal.'

'You should study Mechanical Engineering because you can become anything you want. You have a background you never lose and you always have a backpack with tools with you. Every time you encounter something, you can almost always link it back to something you did during your studies.'

'We need more women in mechanical engineering. I think that my time studying here would have been so much better if there would be more women. You can reflect everything to one another and not just to men.'

'Tips for new students? Time management. You should really make a timeframe of everything you should do in a year, but also really enjoy it. Also expand your knowledge by looking outside of your study. You learn a lot within your study, but also outside of it.'